Native Sons & Daughters of Kansas honor health care workers at banquet

For the first time in its history, the organization honored an entire industry at its annual banquet.
Published: Jan. 28, 2023 at 9:48 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Native Sons and Daughters of Kansas held their 103rd annual meeting Saturday night in Topeka.

For the first time in its history, the organization honored an entire industry at its annual banquet.

“For 100 years we’ve met to honor a Kansan of the Year, and tonight we’re doing something a little bit different in rather than honor an individual or group of individuals, we’re honoring the entire healthcare system for its response to COVID-19,” said Clint Patty, co-president of Native Sons and Daughters of Kansas.

After a two year hiatus due to the pandemic, the organization thought it would be appropriate to honor healthcare workers upon its return.

“We haven’t met for two years because of the pandemic and after everything that we all had been through as Kansans, there was a thought on the board that we ought to take a moment and mark this time to honor those health care workers who’ve given us so much,” Patty said.

In past years, the award has gone to one single person for their contributions to the state.

“We’ve had everybody from Gordon Parks to Dwight Eisenhower to Bob Dole to Bill Self to Bill Snyder just honored hundreds of Kansans who have brought a lot of respect and honor to the state and given great contributions both to this state and to the nation,” said Patty.

Patty said the contributions and sacrifices of healthcare workers are hard to put into words.

“It’s hard for us to even fully even appreciate it. Anytime there’s a major disaster or something happens in this country, we got the opportunity to volunteer, we get an opportunity to be involved in reclamation efforts. We had no opportunity to do that with COVID-19, it was too dangerous. And so these healthcare workers literally took all of that on their shoulders and beared the entire brunt of that and it means the world.”