Heart to heart, they are united


Beth Ansell And Bud Hooven

September 23, 2001|By Sandy Alexander | Sandy Alexander,Sun Staff

Beth Ansell and Bud Hooven work on the open-heart surgery team at Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, and doing so brought their own hearts together as friends and family saw at their Sept. 9 wedding.

That afternoon at Overhills Mansion in Catonsville, the wedding began with the bride's arrival in a horse-drawn carriage. Her son, Ryder, 14, wearing a tuxedo with tails and a top hat, walked her down the aisle. There Bud waited with his daughter, Dyani Ratchford, 26. A lifelong friend of Beth's was the maid of honor, and her two sisters were bridesmaids.

The hospital rabbi performed the civil ceremony in which the two exchanged their own vows. Many of their co-workers watched the ceremony and stayed for a reception, excited that amid the long hours and intense work at the hospital, Beth and Bud had found one another.

"I think (working together) strengthens our relationship," says Bud, 49. He is a physician's assistant who has worked at Sinai for 10 years, taking patient histories, giving physicals, reading test results and assisting with the sur-geries. Beth, 41, is a registered nurse who joined the hospital staff in 1992 and coordinates the cardiac intensive-care unit, where patients are taken to recover after surgery.

It is demanding work with 12-hour days, being on call nights and weekends, and providing intensive care for the patients, but both say it is rewarding as well.

Finding each other was an added benefit. "When we first met, we worked together very, very well," says Bud. Then, "You start to talk about other things in life."

After their previous marriages came to an end, they found companionship and caring in each other.

He is "a true gentleman," Beth says of her new husband. He says he knew when they started to get to know each other, "This was somebody I just wanted to be around."

"She was easy to talk to, understanding," Bud says.

That understanding includes sympathy about the demands of their jobs.

And while they try to keep work from interfering with their private lives, they do take advantage of one another's expertise and information, trading ideas and suggestions about patients when necessary.

When Beth and Bud can break away from work, family time is important. They keep up with Ryder's school and sports and keep in touch with Dyani, who married last year. When they can, they enjoy downtime together, listening to music, exercising or taking vacations.

"We like quiet time," says Bud. "It's show time when you're at the hospital. ... You have to talk to families, you have to talk to patients. At home, that's why nonverbal communication has worked so well for us."

After a two-week honeymoon in the Caribbean and Jamaica, they are looking forward to a future together that involves enjoying their family, their home in Catonsville and their work.

Beth has lots of energy to get things done, says Bud, "and it flows over to me to keep me going.

"She takes care of me."

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