Myrtle Warneke, RN, repre­sents the finest appli­ca­tion of the training, princi­ples and ethics that consti­tute the profes­sion of nursing. A 1922 graduate of St. Joseph’s School of Nursing in Tacoma, Myrtle pursued post-graduate work in anesthe­si­ology at St. Joseph’s and later under the direc­tion of Dr. Lundy, chief of anesthe­si­ology, at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.

During World War II she returned to Seattle to work as first assis­tant to Dr. H.J. Wycoff, and she purchased the Seneca Summit Hospital. She later sold it in 1951 to assist in the financing of the North­gate project, that was to be the first shopping center in the United States, and would include North­gate General Hospital. The Hospital occupied the second floor of the three story medical building and the balance of the space was to house the pharmacy and hospital physi­cians. When leasing started, the first four or five contracts went to dentists, which spelled doom to Myrtle. After speaking with Mr. Douglas, presi­dent of the North­gate Company, the two agreed that survival of the project required that only physi­cians be housed in the medical building. Doctors occupying downtown offices began to move to the north end, and they were carefully screened to include all practices of medicine, in turn making up the ideal hospital staff.

North­gate General Hospital, with its 42 beds, opened April 4, 1952 with the admis­sion of its first patient. The lean years, had little or no fat attached to them, but as the new shopping mall and doctors practices grew, the pharmacy began to make ends meet and ultimately a shortage of beds and office space became reality. Myrtle negoti­ated with Allied Stores to update the existing Hospital and double its size. The end result was a new addition to North­gate General Hospital.

Myrtle’s input into business proceed­ings led to positive change. The south wing with the OB unit and the nursery was running into the red since less families were having children, so the wing closed and was replaced with a new inten­sive care unit vital to surgery and cardiac patients.

Myrtle is to be commended for her devotion to the nursing profes­sion, and her demands of strict adher­ence to ethics from nurses and staff. The best patient care was her goal, and her warm smile, fairness, and exper­tise won the love and respect of her patients and profes­sional colleagues.

Miss Warneke dreamed of opening a facility where an all RN staff would provide total care of people north of the canal. Her dream came true, and at the time of its opening, there was no other general hospital between the canal and Everett.