Special Dayton snow globes given to thank health care workers

Kettering Health Network employees will soon receive a special memento of the Gem City from one of Dayton’s biggest cheerleaders.

In honor of National Hospital Week, which starts today, Kelly and Joe Lehman dropped off 200 Global Love Dayton snow globes to Rick Thie, president of the Kettering Medical Center Foundation, to be delivered to employees.

Each globe is packed with a note thanking hospital workers for their hard work, even under tough circumstances.

“The compassion, courage and selflessness you demonstrate is worth recognition. This gift is a small token of our appreciation for the amazing care and service you provide,” the note says. “With gratitude and faith that better days are ahead when we all can, once again, visit the beloved treasures of our community and enjoy time with families & friends.”

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Raised as an Army brat, Kelly Lehman grew up moving around the states and even lived abroad.

“But to me, Dayton was this shiny beacon on the hill called home,” Kelly Lehman said.

In 2017, the Lehmans started Global Love Dayton, selling detailed snow globes containing iconic Dayton landmarks to highlight the region and give half of net proceeds to the Stewardship Resources Foundation Fund at The Dayton Foundation.

“This pandemic has brought up a lot of what is really important to me and last week, I just started praying,” Kelly Lehman said. “Where can they go and do some good? Where can they make people’s hearts happy? Where can they heal people who feel unappreciated?”

Kelly’s mother passed away in 2014, her father in 2016. Both received care through Kettering.

“Three generations of my family have been cared for at Kettering,” Kelly Lehman said. “My grandma was a fragile diabetic in the 1960s and I have so many photographs of myself in my cute little Sunday ‘go-to-meet-(grandma)’ clothes, standing in front of the Charles F. Kettering Memorial Hospital water fountain back in the day.”

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The Lehmans’ gift of the snow globes to the health network was done with intention at every step. At first, only front line health care workers were going to be sent a globe, but Kelly said she knew her mother would not have let her forget the other workers doing their part to fight the virus.

“I imagine the house keeping staff has raw fingers,” Kelly Lehman said. “I mean, I get raw from washing my hands and I’m not cleaning like they are all day. The cafeteria staff, anyone — I want it to go to everyone. … I wanted to do something, but I couldn’t write a big check. But I had snow globes.”

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