PERTH AMBOY — Employees at Raritan Bay Medical Center (RBMC) since 1971 and 1973 respectively, Linda and Erich Kreher have certainly seen healthcare evolve and both have contributed to the growth of the medical center over four decades. On a personal side, this 39-year married couple has their second family at the medical center to thank for getting them together in the first place.
“It’s true there was a little matchmaking involved,” recalls Linda, who spent her RBMC career in the Communications Department as a systems administrator. Erich, who is retiring as the medical center’s Senior Vice President and General Counsel, was first employed at RBMC as a supervisor in the microbiology lab. “The lab, where pathology studies were conducted, and the Communications Department shared the same hallway. Passing by every day, I couldn’t help but notice this very attractive woman in Communications. Eventually, my boss and my to-be wife’s boss said, ‘Why don’t you just ask her out? It’s not like you have to marry her.’”
The couple did in fact marry in 1974 and Linda and Erich continued to work at Raritan Bay. That same year, Erich began night school at Seton Hall University Law School, graduating four years later and eventually becoming the medical center’s Director of Legal and Risk Management. “The titles have changed over the years,” said Erich, “and the responsibilities have increased and the scope of work has certainly grown as healthcare has become more complex. I’ve been involved in several building projects, the development of our corporate compliance program, the formation and operation of our captive insurance company, and the beginning of our enterprise risk management program.”
Linda chuckles when she recalls that for many years, some RBMC staff didn’t even know the two were married. “We never had lunch together,” said Linda, “and believe it or not, we did not discuss work when we got home. With a growing family, we had so much else going on when we weren’t at the hospital.”
Linda’s department manages phone operators, internal phone systems, physician practice answering services and similar communications areas throughout the medical center. “As RBMC has grown, so has our department,” said Linda. “With new technology and many expansions, the work has always stayed interesting and exciting.” Both Linda and Erich agree that they have made many close friends over the years at Raritan Bay Medical Center. “It’s been a good run,” says Linda, “and now we are looking forward to a new phase of our lives together.”
Nearly forty years, two sons and two grandchildren later, Linda and Erich will soon take leave of their caring friends and co-workers at RBMC. The former Lincroft residents are counting the days until they depart for South Carolina to enjoy sunny days filled with golf, gardening and visits from children and grandchildren.
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