August 21, 2009
Lafayette Family Cancer Center
Local Family Commits to Champion the Cure!
(Brewer, ME) – Danny and Carla Lafayette always hoped they would be in a position to help their community in a lasting way, and now the Hampden couple has managed to assemble extraordinary support for a new cancer and research center being built in Brewer, “We can have a world class center here, we all deserve it, and we can also find a cure for cancer right here if we are just given the resources and talent to do it,” they said.
The promise of endless possibilities and hope motivated the Lafayettes to pledge a campaign altering gift to the Champion the Cure capital campaign for EMMC’s CancerCare of Maine and the Maine Institute for Human Genetics and Health. “This gift is not going to be easy for us,” comments the Lafayettes. “We took a vote among our 30 hotel managers and executive team and it was unanimous – they all wanted to be part of making this happen. So when we say family we really mean our extended family too – staff and customers,” they add.
The Lafayette gift will be made through various fundraising efforts at their hotels over a number of years and through their estates. The Lafayettes also divided their very generous gift equally into two parts, one to help build the new CancerCare of Maine facility and future home of the Maine Institute for Human Genetics and Health, and the other to support research in finding a cure for melanoma, the form of cancer their son, Ramsey, was diagnosed with in his teens. Because of this very personal connection, Danny and Carla Lafayette are committed to this campaign.
“No parent should ever have to bury a child because of cancer or any other disease. Thankfully our son, while still facing complications and checkups, has a favorable chance of survival because we are getting research going in the Bangor-Brewer area to cure melanoma and other cancers. Our son is healthy and is a junior at Harvard now – but this didn’t happen without quality medical services being available for our family right here at home. This new CancerCare of Maine facility will offer technology so leading edge that, in some cases, this is the only place in the state to have it! We deserve this in our area - it’s been a long time coming, and our family and staff are thrilled to be a part of it.”
Cancer is a health concern for many Mainers and rightly so as our state has one of the highest cancer rates in the country. That is why the EMMC Board of Trustees and the physician leadership and executive team lead by Deborah Carey Johnson, RN, president and CEO, have identified state-of-the-art cancer care as a priority. EMMC’s CancerCare of Maine will relocate to its new building in the EMHS Professional Center in Brewer at the close of this year. The new facility will allow EMMC’s oncology doctors and staff to better serve the more than 7,000 patients we treat each year. “We are profoundly grateful for the Lafayettes tremendous generosity, but not surprised,” remarks Johnson. “They are long-time supporters of EMMC and our community, and it truly is heart warming to witness their commitment to our shared vision of the potential for discoveries in cancer treatment and prevention.”
EMMC will collaborate with the Maine Institute for Human Genetics and Health to reduce Maine’s top rating for cancer incidence.
The Lafayettes called their gift an investment in Maine and beyond, “We believe Maine is great and this is one way we can encourage others in Maine and beyond to believe that too.”