Nurse Becky Gaffney describes the new chapel at the expanded Lackey Free Clinic.

Jim Shaw showed what he used when he started offering free medical care. It all fit into a cardboard box.

Shaw, the doctor who with his wife Cooka founded the Lackey Free Clinic, used to carry all of his supplies in and out of the back of Rising Sun Baptist Church in Lackey. He started that work one night a week 18 years ago, and contrasted it sharply with the clinic's state of the art renovation and addition celebrated last week.

The clinic opened its own facility on Old Williamsburg Road in 2003. It serves uninsured patients who live in Newport News, York, James City, Poquoson and Williamsburg at no cost.

"Who would have predicted this 18 years ago when the two Shaws and a volunteer opened the back of the church for health care," Jim Shaw said. "This was all God's vision and all the glory goes to him."

Green and white balloons festooned the grounds as invited guests listened to remarks, watched a ribbon cutting and took tours of the facility on Friday. The existing building was renovated and the 6,000 foot F. Dewey Gottwald Addition brings the total to 10,000 square feet.

The addition was named after Cooka Shaw's late Uncle Dewey, and his son Floyd D. Gottwald Jr. made remarks as did both Shaws. Del. Michael Watson, R-James City County, York County Board of Supervisors Chairman Walt Zaremba, Williamsburg Community Health Foundation President and CEO Jeanne Zeidler and Virginia Health Care Foundation Trustee Charlie Hill also spoke. Zaremba read a resolution from York County.

Williamsburg Community Chapel Pastor Travis Simone presented a plaque to dedicate the clinic's new chapel in the Shaws' honor.

The $1.4 million clinic addition expanded the number of medical exam rooms from four to 10, and the number of dental exam rooms from one to five. Two sizable education rooms for group classes, a chapel, four eligibility screening stations and staff offices were also added, according to Lackey Free Clinic spokeswoman Kelly Cash. An enhanced pharmacy was funded by the Virginia Health Care Foundation.

Construction began in May of 2012, and required temporary rearranging of some clinic space and services to allow for all of the work. Several dentists who volunteer with the clinic saw patients at their offices during off hours once a month because the clinic could not provide on-site dental services during the renovation.

The clinic hosted more than 12,000 patient visits last year, said Becky Gaffney, one of three staff nurses at the clinic and a tour guide for the day. The new facilities will allow the clinic to accept more than a thousand new patients over the next three years, according to officials.

Williams can be reached by phone at 757-247-4644.

Lackey Free Clinic

The Lackey Free Clinic, an outreach of Olivet Medical Ministry, is located at 1620 Old Williamsburg Road, Yorktown. The phone number is 886-0608 and website is lackeyfreeclinic.org.

More online

To see video and a photo gallery from the Lackey Free Clinic event, go to dailypress.com.