It’s an end of an era but not an ending as Dr. Linda Cosgrove passes her chiropractic practice to Dr. Krystle Moreland-Pace, her associate of several years now. Moreland-Pace will now be the chiropractic clinic’s owner, with Dr. Michelle Jefferson as her associate.
“I’m handing off to two capable doctors the people I’ve cared for and loved through the years,” Cosgrove shared with the Sun in an interview this past week, her last week of practice.
After 30 years, Waxahachie “will always be my hometown,” said Cosgrove, who’d been thinking of retirement for about a year-and-a-half now. “I’m just ready.”
The work of a chiropractor is to “find the places where the joints are not moving the way they’re supposed to and to restore that mobility – and that restores the normal function,” she said, as Moreland-Pace nodded in agreement. “We keep people functional and active and what we do keeps a lot of people from having to take drugs. For many people, we are the first health professional they see and, if it’s something beyond what we treat, we help direct them to where they need to go.”
Cosgrove was in college studying for her teaching certificate when she first went to a chiropractor. “I was so impressed,” she said. “It was amazing.”
Although deep down she knew at that point she wanted to be a chiropractor, she would first go on to get a master’s in public administration before finally making the decision to follow her dream. She notes that her younger brother had already made his decision to be a chiropractor after suffering through an injury in high school and being similarly impressed with the health care.
“I thought it was too late,” Cosgrove said of when she came to the same calling. It was a discussion at the family dinner table with her parents and brother that helped her dive into what would be a lasting career. “My dad said, ‘If that’s what you want to do, we’ll make it happen.’ ”
And with that encouragement she went on to enroll in Parker College, now known as Parker University, College of Chiropractic. It’s from under the latter name that Moreland-Pace graduated several years ago.
And the school’s job board is where Cosgrove found what turned out to be another Waxahachie native in Moreland-Pace, who’s the daughter of retired coach and math teacher Isaiah Moreland Jr. and retired educator Vivian Moreland. Her brother, Isaiah “Three” Moreland III, was a member of Waxahachie’s state championship football team.
“I was so glad to have an associate from here,” Cosgrove said. “She knows this town as well as I know this town.”
Moreland-Pace was doing an internship in Mexico City when she saw the opportunity to join Cosgrove’s practice and immediately texted her to share her interest. The two hit it off from the start.
“Her attitude was the caring, compassionate attitude I was looking for,” Cosgrove said. “I told her, ‘You’ll fit in here.’ ”
For her part, Moreland-Pace felt she was home in more ways than one.
“This was the type of practice I was looking for,” she said. “I didn’t want to work in a hustle-bustle type place. I want to actually take care of patients’ concerns.”
With Moreland-Pace taking over the helm, Cosgrove said she’s confident her patients will continue to have their health needs addressed. And that has made it easier to retire, although she easily tears up at the rite of passage she’s undergoing. She’s quick to note though that she’s one of those people who can laugh and cry at the same time, an attribute on display more than once during her visit with the Sun.
She can’t say enough about the patients she’s served through her three decades of work as a chiropractor. And, indeed, the words are hard for her to express.
“My patients really stuck by me … through my maternity leave, the six months I was out with cancer treatment … . If I wasn’t sure they were going to be taken care of when I’m gone … ,” she pauses for a moment before the smile returns to her face.
Although Cosgrove’s childhood was spent in Waxahachie (she went to Northside as a first-grader), her family moved due to her father’s service as a minister. The daughter of Owen and Sue Cosgrove, there’s a bit of serendipity in how she – and they – ended up back in Waxahachie.
While she was still in chiropractic school, Cosgrove came back to Waxahachie to attend a church service. It was there she happened to hear about an opening for a minister – and that led to her parents returning to Waxahachie from Midland, with her father becoming the minister of what was then known as College Street Church of Christ, now Brown Street Church of Christ.
When Cosgrove opened her practice (her mom helped her in the office), she worked out of a space in the University Plaza Shopping Center for about eight years before buying her own building at the corner of Water and Gibson streets, renovating what was once known as Frank’s Meat Market. “I was a vegetarian at the time so how ironic is that?” she said with a laugh but also noting how, as time has passed, the building has since become known by her practice’s name.
With Moreland-Pace as first her associate and now successor, the segue from one practice to another couldn’t have been better planned. For her part, Moreland-Pace says she’s looking forward to carrying on the tradition of patient care established by Cosgrove 30 years ago.
“It’s been great,” she said. “It’s nice to be back home. I’ve had her as a guide and that’s been very nice.”
The two are in step as to the continuation of the quality of patient care, saying that, really, the only difference is that it’ll be under Moreland-Pace’s practice’s name: Progressive Pace Chiropractic.
And, as noted in an announcement about Cosgrove’s retirement, “The name of the clinic has changed. The location, the phone number and the Dedicated Professional Service remain the same.”
As Cosgrove has seen the generations come through her practice so she’s now passing the torch onto the next generation herself. She’s been in practice long enough to where she’s seen the children of her patients grow up and have children of their own now.
She recalls how one patient remarked on how his child was playing with the blocks in the waiting room like he would do when he was waiting for his parent to come out of the adjustment room. “I laughed and told him, ‘Those are the same blocks you played with.’ ”
Cosgrove said she has many happy memories from her practice but she’s made plenty of retirement plans to keep herself busy.
These include a move to Mineral Wells, which Cosgrove describes as a “peaceful, smaller, slower-paced” town. From there, she plans to do some traveling throughout the United States. She’s also looking forward to renovating some homes and learning more about landscaping, other interests she’s had over the years and will now have the time to indulge.
She’ll not be a stranger to Waxahachie, however, as she’ll continue to stop in and visit the “many, many” friends she’s made here.
“I don’t know how many patients I’ve seen over the years but so many of them have become good friends,” she said.