SHELBYVILLE, IL -- On July 4, 1918, after a year of hard work, Shelbyville witnessed the opening of Shelby County Memorial Hospital. It was built by concerned citizens who felt that 40 miles were too far to travel by horse and buggy or train to get medical attention.

In January of 2017, the hospital became the newest affiliation with Hospital Sisters Health System, and the name changed. HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital will celebrate its centennial birthday this year. For 100 years, the hospital has been the cornerstone of the community, providing around-the-clock, quality health care close to home for its neighbors.

During the next several weeks, HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital will share stories of those who have celebrated more 25 years serving in this community as a hospital colleague. This longevity of service bears personal witness to much of that centennial history. These colleagues will talk about positive changes they have seen in the hospital throughout their tenures.

Mary Bieber began her career at the hospital 30 years ago. She wanted a job that would provide a little extra cash to help her three children as they began their college careers, and the hospital’s part-time dishwasher position seemed to fit the bill nicely.

Though she originally planned for the job to be short-term, she enjoyed the work and continued serving in her dietary role. Through the years, she has worked every job in the department and was eventually promoted to the dietary manager. Since that promotion, Mary has spent at least 25 years as her department’s manager. “I never viewed myself as ‘the boss’ but a leader who served with my colleagues,” Bieber said.

At the beginning of her career, the cafeteria was located on the basement level without a dining room facility, and she served her customers through a small window in the wall. The lunch line leading up to the window could hold as many eight people with trays as they waited.

Bieber recalls, “Eventually, two small dining rooms were added, and our cafeteria saw an expansion in their business. Then in the 2012 redesign of the hospital, the cafeteria moved to the second floor, and we gained this beautiful, bright new facility. We added a large dining room with the capability to hold a private meeting and a combination stove. Everyone in the dietary department was excited about the changes.”

“Throughout the years, I have loved the contact with people every day. And each day, my job is different. Each day comes with a challenge which makes the work rewarding,” Bieber said. “Since we moved upstairs, we have seen our business improve. We have people who come in from the community on a regular basis. We love to take care of them, and it’s nice.”

On March 30, 2018, Bieber will retire. As she looks forward to her retirement, she laments, “I have worked with wonderful people over the years. I couldn’t ask for better.”

The hospital would like to invite friends, family and present and past colleagues who have worked with Bieber to join them as they wish her the best at her retirement party on Friday, March 30 from 3-4 p.m. in Classroom A at HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital.
About HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital
Since its inception in 1916, HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital in Shelbyville (GSS) has been dedicated to excellence in healthcare for those living and visiting their communities. GSS has accomplished this by providing comprehensive health services and meeting the needs of patients served through their compassionate care, business integrity and community responsibility. GSS provides a 24/7 emergency department that is fully staffed by physicians and highly-trained nurses, and also features inpatient and outpatient services, including a 24-hour laboratory and an imaging department that meets today’s highest standards for diagnostic imaging technology. GSS has an advanced surgery department and an acute inpatient care unit. Dedicated to being a hometown hospital, GSS’ home health and rehabilitation departments are committed to excellence with a team of professional nurses and therapists providing a variety of medical services and rehabilitative therapies, all designed to help patients heal in their own environment. The group of visiting specialists in the outpatient clinic works closely with GSS to help keep the healthcare services local even if a specialized procedure or exam is required. GSS strives to be the first choice for the community’s healthcare needs. For more information about HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital, visit   
About Hospital Sisters Health System
Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) mission is to reveal and embody Christ’s healing love for all people through our high-quality Franciscan health care ministry. HSHS provides state-of-the-art health care to our patients and is dedicated to serving all people, especially the most vulnerable, at each of our 15 local systems and physician practices in Illinois (Belleville, Breese, Decatur, Effingham, Greenville, Highland, Litchfield, Shelbyville and Springfield) and Wisconsin (Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Oconto Falls, Sheboygan and two in Green Bay).  HSHS is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, and Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the founding institute. For more information about HSHS, visit For more information about Hospital Sisters of St. Francis,

Media Contact

Andrew Dilbeck

HSHS Illinois
Office: 217-464-5610

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