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Burn survivors help celebrate UPMC Mercy Burn Center's golden anniversary

| Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017, 3:18 p.m.
Nate Smallwood | Tribune-Review
Kendra McAleer, 9, of Johnstown poses with Sparky the Fire Dog during UPMC Mercy's Annual Burn Survivor Sunday on Feb. 12, 2017.
Nate Smallwood | Tribune-Review
An arts-and-crafts station is set up inside of UPMC Mercy hospital in Pittsburgh during its Annual Burn Survivor Sunday on Feb. 12, 2017.
Nate Smallwood | Tribune-Review
A cake celebrating the 50th anniversary of UPMC Mercy's Burn Unit opening sits on a table during the Annual Burn Survivor Sunday event on Feb. 12, 2017.
Nate Smallwood | Tribune-Review
Brody Visis, 7, of White Oak, plays with his brother, Noah Visis, 11, during the UPMC Mercy's Annual Burn Survivor Sunday on Feb. 12, 2017.

The UPMC Mercy Burn Center on Sunday celebrated its 50th anniversary, marking the occasion in conjunction with the annual Burn Survivor Sunday.

About 100 burn survivors, first responders and caregivers gathered at the hospital's Uptown campus along with balloon artists and therapy dogs.

Burn Survivor Sunday is celebrated as part of National Burn Awareness Week and reunites burn survivors with members of their care team, including doctors and nurses.

Mercy's Burn Center admitted about 30 patients during its first year in 1967. Today, about 350 patients each year are admitted and more than 2,500 others are treated on an outpatient basis, according to UPMC.

Nate Smallwood is a Tribune-Review photographer. Reach him at nsmallwood@tribweb.com.

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