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Phil's bench

June 30, 2016 | Posted in Beverly | Be the first one to comment

A Tribute to My Brother, Dr. Philip Hanapole

It has been a year and 3 months since my brother retired.  Some of you may know that though his retirement was forthcoming, it came on a little faster than anticipated.  His wife Hanna had some health challenges and he decided to stop traveling from Florida a couple of months sooner than originally planned.  The good news is that she came through that challenge with flying colors and is doing so well she is able to travel again.  They are visiting this week and the staff just got together to take them to lunch, something we had planned to do for over a year.

When the reality of his retirement became apparent, his team started to think of what we could do for him that would acknowledge the milestone and that he would enjoy.  If you know him well, you know that as quick as he is to gift others for every/all celebrations, he wants little for himself.  Every suggestion we made was rejected.  He wanted no hoopla, no gifts, no schmaltz!  He insisted that the years of amazing relationships with our patients was more than enough for him.  He felt that he was walking away having received far more than he had given.  Many of us would beg to differ!

When the town of Belmar created the “Buy a Bench” program that was a gift to us all.  To raise money to replace all the boardwalk benches that were wiped out by Superstorm Sandy, Belmar “sold” benches to those who wanted to help support the cause.  Buying a bench meant that you were able to have 2 lines of 30 characters engraved along the  back.  We no longer needed to stress over what to do for him, this was the perfect solution.  Through the years my brothers’ idea of a perfect lunch was to grab a salad or sandwich and take it down to the beach and enjoy the peace that comes from just gazing at the ocean.  A bench, inscribed just for him, right on 7th Avenue in the town he had lovingly practiced in for more than 40 years, what could be a better tribute!

So finally, more than a year after the above mentioned bench was placed on the boardwalk we gathered to surprise him.  Fittingly one of our long time patients had just finished her run as we all approached and was able to take some snapshots to remember the occasion.  It was apparent when he saw the inscription he was truly moved.  So were we. 

I think you all know how proud of my brother I am.  A finer man doesn’t exist!  Every day, for over 40 years, he walked into his practice excited to care for each and every patient.  While doing the finest dentistry possible he managed to build a team and create an environment that was warm, friendly and fun.  As a young man he positioned himself to be the kinder, gentler and more patient care giver, changing the way many felt about their dental visits.  Besides being an incredible dentist he has been a friend, inspiration, mentor, teacher, counselor, cheer leader, matchmaker, coach and confidant to so many.  This is a legacy for which he should be very proud!

Though we all miss him terribly, we are thrilled that after having such a successful career he is now enjoying an equally satisfying and much deserved retirement.  He and Hanna have created a beautiful life in Florida and I don’t know 2 people who deserve it more.

We hope you are enjoying this slow to start but spectacular summer!  As always we are here to help with any of your dental needs, just give us a call.

We look forward to seeing you soon!
Beverly


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