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The Rotary Club of Malvern honored Dr. Andrew Opritza with a Paul Harris Fellow award at its meeting on Monday, April 10, at the Malvern United Methodist Church.
Opritza is the author of three books and is currently working on a fourth. He read several selections from his latest manuscript to the Club.
Roger Bartley, a member of the Club, presented the Paul Harris Fellow award which he had purchased to Opritza to honor him for his insights about life and writing which he has offered in a writer's group in Carrollton which he attends.
Opritza began publishing, in part, as an outlet for his grief over his wife descent into Alzheimer's disease ten years ago. The two have been married 65 years, and Opritza wrote his first book Descent into Shadows to talk about his experience of caring for her during her first five years of the disease. His other books are collections of short stories, "mostly autobiographical," about his reflections on life.
Opritza told the Club that one of his motivations for entering the medical field was because of his mother's death. She died a year after his birth when she was refused medical care because of her inability to pay. When he became a doctor he vowed that he would never refuse anyone treatment for that reason.
A Paul Harris Fellow award is a Rotary International award which is given to donors of $1,000 to the Rotary Foundation.
The Rotary Foundation was started by Arch Klumph in 1917 to support Rotary projects around the world.
Donations to the Foundation are held by Rotary International for three years. The interest received pays for all of the Foundation's administrative expenses. Then the full $1,000 is divided between Rotary International and the local Rotary District to be used for projects.