LeJon Poole wrote -Pungo District Hospital will be closed as of July 1st, 2014 unless there is a groundswell of political and financial support. This hospital has been open for over 60 years and serves several counties in rural North Carolina, particularly Beaufort & Hyde Counties. There are at least 25,000 rural residents that will be forced to drive or be transported between an hour to an hour and a half on winding back roads to get to the next hospital with an Emergency Department. Without this hospital many of the most vulnerable North Carolinians will die. Especially vulnerable are a disproportionately large number of Veterans, people of color, the poor, and women.