From tragedy, a positive impact

Good Samaritan Health Clinic recognizes contribution of Stephen K. Griffith Memorial Fund to mental health services

Two plaques were presented to Stephen Griffith’s children Monday evening; two others will hang at Good Samaritan Health Clinic and Haven Counseling Services. Left to right are Griffith’s son Wyles Griffith, Haven Counselor Mandy Wilhite, Good Samaritan Executive Director Jolanda Hutson and Griffith’s daughter S.F. Lovell. (W.C. Mann for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – Good Samaritan Health Clinic on Monday presented plaques to the children of Stephen K. Griffith for the contributions of the fund named in their father’s honor to the charitable clinic’s mental health services. Griffith, a prominent Cullman attorney, was murdered in 2017 by a man suffering from severe mental illness. The next year, Griffith’s family started the Stephen K. Griffith Memorial Fund to provide mental health services to Cullman County residents who cannot afford services or lack insurance.

Good Samaritan Executive Director Jolanda Hutson told the family and members of the fund’s governing board, “We really appreciate that you all are allowing the tragic experience that y’all went through to be the motivation and the inspiration to really make a positive impact on so many in our community.”

Hutson said the Cullman community has a great need for mental health services, and the partnership with the fund is “a steppingstone and a starting point” for giving people the help they need.

Mandy Wilhite, a licensed counselor who operates Haven Counseling Services, provides Good Samaritan’s mental health services.

She told the group, “Through tragedy, we have made numerous touches throughout our community, touches that would not be possible without the support of the Good Samaritan Clinic and the Stephen K. Griffith Memorial Fund. Programs such as this are what makes Cullman among some of the most blessed places just to live. We are currently in a society where mental health assistance is often overlooked, not accepted, unavailable or unachievable due to financial constraints. Through this memorial fund, we are readily available to help those in need through the Good Samaritan referral system, that would not otherwise be able to receive these services. We are a community blessed with many talents, services and those willing to go above and beyond their calling.”

Plaques were presented to Griffith’s children Wyles Griffith and S.F. Lovell. Additional plaques will hang at Good Samaritan Health Clinic and Haven Counseling Services.

The Stephen K. Griffith Memorial Fund is administered by Stephen Donaldson, Steve Glasscock, Shawn Nelson, Shay Persall and Dr. Tom “Big Doc” Williamson, with advisors Charna Brown, Fess St. John and Jeb Williamson.

For more on Good Samaritan Health Clinic’s services, which include primary medical care, certain dental procedures and now mental health services through Haven Counseling Services, visit

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W.C. Mann