Volunteers Don Rigot and Olcott Pinkston form stout friendship

April 08, 2024

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Like most Denver Health volunteers, Don Rigot and Olcott Pinkston started their service as “pathfinders,” helping patients and visitors navigate our busy campus. Unlike most volunteers, they always work as a pair.

You can find Rigot, 70, and Pinkston, 71, helping new patients, and greeting the regular visitors by name, every Wednesday afternoon in the Outpatient Medical Center.

“The goal,” Rigot said, “is to have as many patient interactions as possible and to help as many people as possible. … You meet all kinds of interesting people from all walks of life.”

Rigot and Pinkston met nearly 14 years ago during training for the Boomers Leading Change in Health volunteer initiative. They became fast friends and decided to dedicate their time to Denver Health.

In the years before the COVID-19 pandemic, they drove patients without transportation to appointments at clinics across our health system – and they did it in a 2007 Ford Edge that was donated by Oprah Winfrey. During the pandemic, when that transportation service ended, they helped out at Denver Health’s vaccination clinics and eventually settled in at the OMC, where they’ve been ever since.

They’re always ready to answer the call if a patient, or employee, needs help.

“It’s an opportunity to give back to the community,” Rigot said.

So the next time you see Don or “Olcy,” be sure to say hello. You may even want to ask them for a craft beer recommendation.

Outside of helping people at Denver Health, the two share a fondness for craft brews and have monthly meetings with friends to stay up on the latest hoppenings in Denver’s beer scene.