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Susan grew up, both physically and literally, within the walls of Toronto East General and then Michael Garron Hospital. Now it feels good for her to give back through a gift in her will.
What are some of your earliest memories?
Mine are of Michael Garron Hospital and from when I was just four years old. My mother often visited friends in hospital, and she would bring me along.
I’d sit in the lobby with my colouring books feeling very much at home. I noticed people taking the time to learn names and listen to stories. Even as a little kid, I felt the warm sense of community that makes our hospital so unique.
When it came time to look for part-time work as a teenager, the hospital just felt like a natural place to start. I walked up the street from Danforth Technical School and applied for a job. That’s how it all started. I was hired in the Stavro Emergency Department to develop x-rays after school. I can’t believe that was 50 years ago!
Next chapter of my life
Over the years, I held different jobs at the hospital. After high school, I trained as an x-ray technician and then worked in medical dictation. I recently retired from a rewarding five-decade career where I’d been the assistant to the Chief of Staff for close to 30 years.
“When I worked on the Chief of Staff side, I saw that finances were hard and they’d always struggle to balance the budget. You know, equipment is expensive. Ultimately everybody’s little bit of money will become a new MRI, an oxygen stat monitor, a new OR table or a patient lift. Whatever it happens to be, it all becomes something. The more people that give their little bit, it ends up being a big bit.”
I still refer to the hospital as my second home. Over the years, I have watched my neighborhood change and evolve and the hospital expand and modernize right along with it. The thing that has always stayed constant is the welcoming community feel.
Michael Garron Hospital has been my family’s hospital in our times of greatest need, too. My loved ones received dignified, compassionate end-of-life care second to none. I think that’s the kind of healthcare that everyone deserves. Don’t you agree?
Gift in my will to honour healthcare
That’s why it was so important for me to give back to the hospital through a gift in my will. I may have a long history with the hospital, but it’s the future I’m thinking about now.
I want to ensure that this special place is there for the folks of East Toronto long after I’m gone. I know you’ll agree that this special community is one worth protecting for future generations.
“When I no longer need my money, who will? The hospital always will. The gift in my will is basically split between the church and the hospital. These are the two places where there’s another home and a community that I can help.”
Stepping away from my desk at the hospital and saying goodbye to my work family has been tough. But knowing that I’m leaving a legacy close to home – for the place that has always felt like home – makes all the difference.
If like me, the staff, care and community at Michael Garron Hospital has touched you in some way, I hope you’ll join me and consider leaving a gift in your will for this gem of a community hospital.