Marilyn Weinstein, at 90, divides her year between the two places she calls home: Green Bay, Wisconsin, where she grew up and raised her own family, and Naples, Florida, where she spends the winter. Ask what matters most to her, though, and you'll see she has a special love for a third place: Jerusalem, Israel.
"I've been there four times," she explains. "I tour the Hadassah Hospital [HMO] each time, and it's just wonderful. It doesn't matter what color you are or what religion you are—nobody is turned away. Everybody is welcome at Hadassah [HMO]."
That resonates for Marilyn, who shared a love of community with her late husband, Louis. The two met at the University of Minnesota and married in 1945, moving to Green Bay a few years later. That's where he launched his dream of opening a children's shoe store—Lou's Bootery. "He loved kids," Marilyn recalls, adding that he came to be known as "Lou the Boot." He also became a strong supporter of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Green Bay and worked for 32 years as a play clock operator at Lambeau Field, home of the Green Bay Packers.
Meanwhile, Marilyn—known as "Mrs. Boot"—poured her energies into their two children, Tom and Nancy, as well as Hadassah, which her mother had also served. When she was named a chapter president, Marilyn made her mother a life member and her father an associate. After their deaths, she memorialized them with Yahrzeit donations through Hadassah. When Lou passed away in October 2007, she added a Yahrzeit donation in his name.
A few years ago, Marilyn visited Israel with a cousin and a close friend. There, she stood at the iconic Marc Chagall stained glass windows in the Abbell Synagogue at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem—especially meaningful because she and Lou had stood there together on a trip to mark their 25th wedding anniversary, and because her gifts meant that her loved ones' names would be included in prayers recited there annually.
Recently, she added to her family's legacy by establishing charitable gift annuities with Hadassah for her children's benefit. The gifts, which she says were easy to set up, will help provide security during their retirement years by offering regular, fixed payments. Most importantly, after their lifetimes, the remainder will support Hadassah's lifesaving work.
"The hospital is known for its research," she says. "It's wonderful to know that all kinds of people—in Israel and worldwide—are going to benefit."
Honor Loved Ones
There are many ways to honor or memorialize loved ones through your gifts to Hadassah. Contact Planned Giving at 800-428-8884 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your options.