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Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt celebrates 20 years

It's a (weeklong) birthday celebration!

by February 13, 2024

Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt staff take a celebratory birthday photo with hospital mascot Champ while wearing their commemorative 20th birthday T-shirts. Photo by Susan Urmy. 

Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt turned 20 on Feb. 8.

The hospital marked the occasion and celebrated two decades of caring for children and families with a little help from some friends (actually a lot of friends).  Patients, families and employees enjoyed a weeklong birthday party that included music performances, mascots, cookies, birthday bingo and so much more.

Monroe Carell opened in 2004 as the first full-service comprehensive children’s hospital in Middle Tennessee.

Take a look at some of the “little big moments” celebrated from Feb. 5-9.

Julie Carell Stadler, daughter of the hospital’s namesake Monroe Carell Jr., and award-winning country music artist Kix Brooks, play birthday bingo with patients and families to celebrate 20 years. The Carell family was at the hospital throughout the week to participate in birthday events and say thank you to employees. Photo by Donn Jones.

Viviana Ramirez, 6, joins hospital mascot Champ and his local sports team mascot friends for a birthday party at the stage of Monroe Carell. Photo by Brian Hallett.

Staff at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital Vanderbilt Surgery and Clinics Murfreesboro take a team photo for the hospital’s Feb. 8 birthday celebration. Submitted photo.


Nashville City Council member Tom Cash designates Feb. 8 as “Monroe Carell Jr. Childrens Hospital at Vanderbilt Day” in Nashville, presenting a mayoral proclamation to Meg Rush, MD, MMHC, president of Monroe Carell, and Julie Carell Stadler, daughter of Monroe Carell Jr. Photo by Susan Urmy.

Friends of Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt volunteers hold a pep rally to thank hospital employees for their work to care for children and families. The Friends group also provided a complimentary coffee station for employees. Submitted photo.

Chris Lee, Chief Operating Officer for Pediatric Ambulatory Services, hands out cookies to staff on the hospital’s birthday. The family of the late Monroe Carell Jr., the hospital’s namesake, generously donated the cookies for staff and helped with the handout. Photo by Susan Urmy. 

The Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball team visits with patient Mustafa Alburghain during a pep rally for Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt’s 20th celebration. Photo by Susan Urmy. 

Build-A-Bear donated stuff bears to patients and held a birthday bear party at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Photo by Andrew Nichols.

It’s a mascot party! Nashville Sounds mascot Booster, Vanderbilt’s Mr. Commodore, Nashville Predators Gnash, Nashville Soccer Club’s Tempo and Monroe Carell mascot Champ presented the hospital with a mascot-sized “happy birthday” card. Photo by Brian Hallett. 

The Junior League of Nashville participated in the birthday celebration by hosting a complimentary coffee station for employees. The foundation for the Monroe Carell facility and pediatric health care in Nashville began in 1923 when the Junior League of Nashville opened the Home for Crippled Children, establishing a partnership with Vanderbilt, to provide convalescent and rehabilitative medical care for children with polio and other diseases. Photo by Jessica Pasley.

Kasey White, a patient at Monroe Carell, participates in the “heart ceremony” to make her Build-A-Bear her very own during the hospital’s birthday celebration. Photo by Donn Jones.

Bearemy, the Build-A-Bear mascot, makes a special appearance at the Monroe Carell 20th birthday celebration. Photo by Donn Jones.

Patients pick out the heart for their Build-A-Bear “heart ceremony” during the Monroe Carell birthday Celebration. Photo by Donn Jones. 

Bearemy poses for photos with patients during the Monroe Carell birthday festivities. Photo by Donn Jones.

Nashville Soccer Club players Brent Kallman and Taylor Washington helped celebrate the 20th birthday celebration with a special interview and games in Seacrest Studio followed by a meet and greet with patients and families. Photo by Erin O. Smith.

Monroe Carell patient, Grant Cole, 7, poses for a photo with Nashville Soccer Club players Taylor Washington (left) and Brent Kallman. Photo by Erin O. Smith. 

Award-winning country music artist Kix Brooks shakes up the bingo ball cage during a special edition of “Birthday Bingo” to celebrate 20 years of Monroe Carell. Photo by Donn Jones. 

Kix Brooks and Squid, the facility dog for Monroe Carell, take a photo during the birthday celebration festivities. Photo by Donn Jones. 

The paper dolls in front of the hospital adorn special birthday hats to honor 20 years of Monroe Carell as a full-service children’s hospital. 

Monroe Carell teams took photos during the weeklong celebration at a paper doll logo photo booth on the hospital’s second floor stage. Photo by Donn Jones.

Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt, Junior League of Nashville, Champ, Julie Carell Stadler, Friends of Monroe Carell, Meg Rush, Kix Brooks, Nashville Soccer Club