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Cancer center fundraising effort reaches halfway mark

The fundraising effort for a $5-million regional cancer treatment center that will be built on property adjoining the Uvalde Memorial Hospital campus has exceeded the halfway point thanks to a $100,000 gift from First State Bank of Uvalde.

Cancer center fundraising effort reaches halfway mark

First State Bank of Uvalde board members (left to right) Joe Parker and Dr. John Shudde present a check for $100,000 to Savings Lives Close to Home Capital Campaign member Jim Buckner as committee members Carol Kothmann and Sheri Rutledge look on.

The fundraising effort for a $5-million regional cancer treatment center that will be built on prop­erty adjoining the Uvalde Memorial Hospital cam­pus has exceeded the halfway point thanks to a $100,000 gift from First State Bank of Uvalde.

“The First State Bank of Uvalde feels that this one of the most impor­tant projects the citizens of Uvalde and the sur­rounding area have been asked to make a reality in a number of years,” said Lewis Bracy, chairman of the board and chief exec­utive officer of the bank of the gift to the Saving Lives Close to Home fundraising campaign.

“It will make cancer treatment so much more available to many people of Southwest Texas. This is not just a Uvalde effort, but one that involves and will benefit a wide area,” Bracy said of the center that will serve Uvalde, Dimmit, Edwards, Kinney, Maverick, Me­dina, Real, Val Verde and Zavala counties.

“We greatly appreciate this level of commitment by this outstanding bank and friend,” said Jim Buckner, a member of the Saving Lives Close to Home Capital Campaign committee.

“This challenge gift will have a significant impact in expanding the healthcare services avail­able in this part of South Texas in the very near future and – most im­portantly – in improving the lives of patients. Our hope is that this center will serve in meaning­ful and sustaining ways to serve our communi­ties just as First State Bank has done for gen­erations,” said Buckner, who is CEO of Uvalde Memorial Hospital.

The new facility will, among other things, offer radiation therapy for can­cer patients in the region who currently have to travel to San Antonio for the service.

“Having experienced the effect of cancer on family life and the daily travel to receive radiation therapy, what a generous gift from the First State Bank. This represents a strong commitment from the First State Bank to bring better medical care to our area. I appreciate this gift immensely,” said Roger Berry, co-chair­man of the capital cam­paign committee.

The donation was made in the form of a challenge gift, intended to challenge other finan­cial institutions in Uvalde and Southwest Texas to collectively pledge an ad­ditional $100,000 toward the 20,000-square-foot center. Dr. John Shudde, who serves as co-chair­man of the committee, encouraged other banks to contribute to the fund­raising effort.

“We appreciate the leadership role the banks provide in our commu­nities. This challenge represents a wonderful opportunity for them to work together towards a common goal of providing the first radia­tion therapy center west of San Antonio for the cancer patients and their families that live in our region,” Shudde said.

The bank’s gift is added to a $1.2 million gift from former Texas Gov. Dolph Briscoe and his family given in memory of Briscoeʼs granddaughter, the late Kate Marmion, and a gift of $1.2 million given by the Archie Jones estate to Uvalde Memorial Hospi­tal, which the board vot­ed to use for the center to show the hospital’s com­mitment to the project.

The center will be lo­cated on land donated by the late Joseph Puccini, who was a Uvalde native and maintained his ties to the area throughout his life. Area businessmen have made in-kind con­tributions including site work, and surveying.

Additionally, numer­ous individuals have already made pledges, bought tickets for a truck raffle and donated me­morials in the amount of $105,000, bringing the total raised for the project to over $2.6 million.

Briscoe and his daughter, Janey Briscoe Marmion, are serving as honorary chairpersons for the Saving Lives Close to Home Capital Campaign Committee.

Others serving are co-chairmen Berry and Shudde, Bracy, Vicente Gonzales III, Bill Kes­sler, Carol Kothmann, Rene Nolasco, Joe Park­er, Alexis Petty and Janet White.

Uvalde Memorial Hospital staff members on the committee in­clude Buckner, project development coordinator Sheri Rutledge and cost accountant Rose Puente.

For more information on the project or to make a donation contact Rut­ledge at 278-6251, ext. 1616.

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Project team

Honorary Chairs

The Honorable Dolph Briscoe, Jr.

1923-2010

Janey Briscoe Marmion


Co-Chairmen

Roger Berry
John L. Shudde, MD

Committee Members

Lewis E. Bracy, Jr.

1924-2009

Vicente Gonzales, III

Bill Kessler

Carol Kothmann

Rene Nolasco

Joe Parker

Alexis L. Petty

Janet White


UMH Advisors

Jim Buckner,Administrator
(2004-2013)
Sheri Rutledge, Development Coordinator
Rose Puente, Cost Accountant