Inside the atrium of the newly opened Bone and Joint Institute of Tennessee stands the locker that belonged to the doctor who founded the practice in 1979.

It came over from the nearby Williamson Medical Center, where it had remained untouched since the day Dr. Craig Ferrell died seven years ago from injuries he had sustained after being thrown from a horse. To those doctors and administrators who now occupy the 121,252-square-foot facility, the locker’s place in the building is a fitting tribute to the memory of Ferrell and his vision 40 years ago when he founded what was then the Franklin Bone and Joint Clinic.

And for any of the scores of people who attended the building’s grand opening Monday afternoon who may not have been familiar with Ferrell, they are now.

“Craig had amazing hands, and he was an amazing surgeon,” Dr. Paul Thomas, senior partner with the BJI, told the crowd as he stood with Ferrell’s widow, Lorraine Ferrell. “He had a gift, the gift of healing. His locker is a symbol that represents to me that his God-given talents flow from God into that locker and into Craig’s hands.

“I want for everybody who passes that locker to look at it as a conduit of healing, that it flows from the good Lord through Craig to all of us. He touched and changed thousands of lives.”

The Bone and Joint Institute, which was formally established in 2018 and was temporarily located in the WMC tower, continues to have a significant impact on both its patients’ lives and on the region’s economy.

“In addition to the 155 people this place employs, it’s also really important because health care is such a key factor for economic development,” Williamson Inc. CEO Matt Largen said. “We are so fortunate and blessed that Williamson County has great access to health care.”

The Bone and Joint Institute includes physician offices, physical and occupational therapy, outpatient imaging services and an outpatient surgery center all under one roof to better serve patients. The outpatient surgery center, scheduled to open in the fall, is able to accommodate a 23-hour observational stay for patients. The Institute will continue to offer an after-hours injury clinic for unexpected orthopedic emergencies.

“The goal for this partnership (with Williamson Medical Center) was to maintain our legacy of 40 years of high-quality, compassionate orthopedic care that began in 1979 when Dr. Craig Ferrell opened the Franklin Bone and Joint Clinic, said Dr. John Klekamp, president of the Bone and Joint Institute. “Along with the Williamson Medical Center, we share a commitment and a culture of putting our patients first. This building provides endless opportunities for us to accomplish this shared vision.”

Others speaking at the ceremony were WMC CEO Donald Webb, Bone and Joint Institute CEO Darren Harris and Russell Little, board chairman for WMC.

The celebration also included a ribbon cutting and a tour of the facility.


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