Story by- Hollis G. Joslin
San Manuel/Oracle, AZ – Sunday, June 1, Dr. Cheryl Wathier, primary care physician of SUN LIFE FAMILY HEALTH CENTER, completed The San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon, which benefits research and treatment for leukemia. Sharing the course with wheel chair participants, amputees, and more than 20,000 other runners, the 26.2 mile trek was Dr. Wathier's first.
Among Dr. Wathier's more memorable experiences of the event were the running Elvis-s, The Marine Core marching band, and the numerous high energy local rock bands performing along the course.
For her effort, Dr. Wathier received a finisher's medal, a bouquet of flowers, and some really sore feet. The greatest reward, she says, is the satisfaction of accomplishing a personal best in physical fitness.
Citing notably lower instances of common ailments such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and depression, in patients who exercise regularly, Dr. Wathier hopes her marathon experience will serve not only as an example to the SUN LIFE family of patients and staff, but also as an inspiration.
Though Dr. Wathier's completion of the marathon is a noteworthy achievement, it is only the latest in a long list of accomplishments demonstrating her focused determination, ability, and willingness to serve and inspire others, that date back to her childhood.
Graduating valedictorian from high school, Dr. Wathier went on to earn her BS from Michigan State University. Following a brief stint in retail management she was offered an opportunity at NASA. She readily accepted and began her first successful career as a configuration management analyst for NASA's Space Shuttle program.
Dr. Wathier remained committed to NASA until 2003, when her mother, Sharon Wathier, was diagnosed with uterine cancer. Dr. Wathier left the agency to devote herself to the care of her mother and four younger siblings. Her mother's battle with the illness was brief. Dr. Wathier responded to the tragedy of her mother's passing by embracing a long held passion for healing, and enrolling in medical school.
Dr. Wathier earned her medical degree from Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine. After graduation and residency, she joined an Oro Valley medical group, where she practiced until the expiration of her contract required her to seek out other opportunities. The transition led her to SUN LIFE.
After meeting with Al Gutierrez, one of SUN LIFE'S outstanding practice managers, Dr Wathier was sold on the practice. "Mr. Gutierrez's lead by example management style reflects his commitment to a harmonious work environment where the well coordinated and qualified staff share the common objective of providing the highest quality of patient care," says Dr Wathier. She joined the practice in November of 2007.