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John Jakes Donates $2 Million Gift to Mayo Clinic

Author: Mayo Clinic

Published: 2009-12-03

Synopsis and Key Points:

John Jakes has added a new chapter by making a $2 million estate gift to Mayo Clinic in Florida.

Main Digest

Family sagas that delight millions are John Jakes's claim to fame, but he and his wife, Rachel, have added a new chapter to that legacy, making a $2 million estate gift to Mayo Clinic in Florida.

Residents of Sarasota, Fla., the Jakes are long-time patients of Mayo Clinic in Florida, and their gift is in honor of their physician team and an expression of gratitude for their care, which Mr. Jakes credits with saving his life. "Mayo Clinic has become a vital part of our lives since we first visited in 1990," says Mr. Jakes.

The Jakes' estate commitment will help future patients receive the same kind of care that inspired the couple's generosity. Their gift will create a posthumous fund that supports all areas of Mayo Clinic in Florida's mission in patient care, medical education and research.

"The best patient care happens in a culture that embraces teamwork, and when the clinical practice is linked to medical education and research "that's why our logo is three interlocking shields," says William Rupp, M.D., CEO of Mayo Clinic in Florida. "We will never depart from that mission, and we are grateful for the Jakes' partnership in sustaining its future. Their philanthropy is especially important given the challenging nature of the health care economy."

Mr. Jakes is recognized as a contemporary master of the family saga. He is the creator of the legendary eight-volume Kent Family Chronicles; the Main and Hazard families of The North and South Trilogy; and the Crowns of Chicago, German-Americans whose stories interweave the history of the 20th century in "Homeland" and its sequel, "American Dreams." His 2002 novel, "Charleston," returned him to the turbulent years of the Revolution and the Civil War. "The Gods of Newport" (2004), dealing with the "queen of resorts" in the age of robber barons, became his 18th consecutive "New York Times" bestseller.

"Because Mayo has meant so much to us personally," Rachel Jakes says, "and because health care remains a national and global issue, we couldn't think of a more important philanthropic legacy than this one. We hope it will play a small part in carrying on Mayo's work in the future."

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