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Column: Legacy Of Life

Dec. 12 marked an historic occasion in Inova Alexandria Hospital’s long and distinguished history: the 140th anniversary of the hospital’s founding by Julia Johns and a committed group of Alexandria women. They saw a need and stepped forward — a tradition that has continued through the years as community members have loyally, and generously, supported their local hospital.

One of the most steadfast and visionary of these supporters is Joe Viar, chairman of the Inova Alexandria Hospital Foundation Board. Named a “Living Legend of Alexandria” by the Alexandria Gazette in 2011, Viar is our hospital’s very own living legend. Over the years he has worked tirelessly to raise funds to support advancements and expansions that meet vital community needs.

In 1989, in partnership with fellow Foundation Board member T.J. Fannon, Viar led a successful $3 million campaign to create the Inova Alexandria Hospital Cancer Center.

Most recently, he and the Foundation Board raised $25 million for Project 2010, Inova Alexandria Hospital’s ambitious effort to enhance almost every aspect of our hospital campus.

Now, he has stepped forward with perhaps his most significant gift — a $1.25 million donation through his estate to the Inova Alexandria Hospital Cancer Center. In recognition, the center has been named the Inova Joseph Viar, Jr. and Bonnie Christ Cancer Center.

Viar’s gift kicks off Inova Alexandria Hospital’s $10 million Legacy of Life campaign, which encourages individuals and families to support the hospital through estate and bequest giving. Donors not only receive recognition for their gifts, but also may direct funds to a particular medical department or area of interest. These allocations are a way to plan and earmark future donations for the hospital.

When people of vision and dedication come together, they create great things. Joe Viar and all of Inova Alexandria Hospital’s donors are no exception. Their ongoing philanthropic support has helped build a world-class hospital that touches the lives of thousands of people each year. As we usher in 2013, we thank our community for continuing this proud tradition and making Inova Alexandria Hospital a shining example of what it means to deliver excellent patient care.

To learn more about Inova Alexandria Hospital’s Legacy of Life campaign, call Mary Myers at 703-504-7770.