Mr. William Dann: Loyal Donor
Spend an afternoon at a local coffee shop in Lawrence, Kansas with William Dann and you will see a humble man who finds fulfillment in helping others—especially children. A smile comes across his face and his eyes light up as you talk about strides made in pediatric healthcare and Children's Mercy.
Mr. Dann's desire to support Children's Mercy is unquestionable. Since his first gift nearly four decades ago, he has been a loyal donor. Throughout the years, he has delighted in helping fund needed equipment for many departments. His biggest gift, however, will come to the hospital through his will. On a recent visit with him at his home, I asked him why he chose to include Children's Mercy in his will. "It is the best idea because it will benefit children in need," says Mr. Dann.
As a child, he had a minor case of Bulbar Polio. He was beginning the ninth grade when he was diagnosed and suffered temporary paralysis. He believes his experience with Bulbar Polio is what has made him more sensitive to the health problems children face. He also knows how fortunate he was to have access to good care and how important Children's Mercy is to the children in the region. "Children are our most important citizens and should not be treated as second class citizens." "They should come first," he says passionately.
Thinking back, he first became familiar with Children's Mercy from hanging around Kansas City and volunteering at the Crippled Children's Home. He smiles as he thinks about talking to "the little ones". His passion for children is evident as his face lights up when he sees a child pass by or tells you the story of a little one he knows. He is truly a passionate advocate for children.
"Children's Mercy is wonderful at what Mercy does," he says with a smile. "I know the hospital will know best how to use the money." And that is why he has not designated the bequest to be used for a particular purpose. He trusts it will be used wisely and that countless children will benefit.