Bringing Back the Natives
Dr. U.R. Plante Scholarship winner Darcy Desourdy Beiras has returned to the Adirondacks to practice medicine in Tupper Lake.
Darci Desourdy (now Beiras) always knew she wanted to be a doctor and she always loved kids. An honors student all the way through Lake Placid elementary and high schools, she won merit scholarships that supported her attendance at Clarkson University, from which she earned a B.S. in Biology with Great Distinction. Her transcript from Boston University School of Medicine is just as full of honors.
The connections Darci built with the Girl Scouts, where she was a leader, and St. Eustace Episcopal Church in Lake Placid, whose 2000 medical mission took her to the Dominican Republic, remain strong to this day.
Darci's outstanding academic record, humanitarian inclination, and powerful link to the Adirondacks, made her the perfect candidate for the Dr. U. R. Plante Medical Scholarship at Adirondack Foundation. Dr. Plante was a kind-hearted, extremely dedicated medical man who practiced in Massena from 1916 through the 1970s. He was the prototypical country doctor—making house calls all through the night, receiving payment in the form of homemade pickles or fresh berries. He supported the delivery of most of the babies born in the area during those years, nearly 10,000 births.
Dr. Plante's daughter, Annette, established the scholarship at Adirondack Foundation hoping that the medical students receiving the award would have the "same compassion for their patients that her father had for his." She also stipulated that awards be made only to residents of the Adirondacks or surrounding areas who are already accepted by or attending medical school en route to becoming an M.D. and who are willing to return to the North Country or practice in a remote area where doctors are needed.
Darci is the Plantes' ideal scholar. Returning to practice in the Adirondacks was always part of her life plan, and return she has. Here she intends to stay.
Paul Dooling, whose scholarship fund also supported Darci's education path, wrote of her: "Sandy and I were always very impressed with Darcy's talent and determination to do her best in various activities in the community, and then in her dedication preparing for a career in medicine."
Darci, her husband Michael Beiras, their adorable young son Kenneth Stephen (named after his grandfathers), and their two dogs live in Saranac Lake. Fortunately, Michael can do his accounting work from home, so Darci can maintain office hours at the Adirondack Medical Center in Tupper Lake. She is Tupper Lake's only pediatrician and serves as the medical director for Tupper Lake's schools.