Hospital Support | Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa

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Blank Children's Hospital

History of Giving

At Blank Children's Hospital, we are fortunate to have the generosity of so many others in supporting our mission. While each and every gift to Blank Children's makes a difference in the lives of children, the following stories share how some families have chosen to generously support the hospital.

The Blank Family

The Blank family has been leading the way for Blank Children's Hospital from the very beginning. From creating the original Raymond Blank Memorial Hospital for Children in 1944 to seeing it renovated in 1981, and renovated again with an expansion in 2001, the Blank family has always led the way.

A.H. and Anna Blank built the original Blank Children's in honor of their son Raymond, who died at an early age. A.H. and Anna Blank cared deeply about the health of young children. A.H. was a regular at the hospital, visiting patients and providing support for many years.

Myron (Raymond's brother) and Jackie Blank, were also very supportive of Blank Children's. They were the first to step forward with a donation for the 2001 renovation of Blank Children's, and have continued their family's legacy of caring. Another generous bequest was left to Blank Children's after the death of Myron and Jackie.

LaVerne & Blaine Briggs

It was after LaVerne and Blaine Briggs' teenage son, Jim, died of leukemia in 1968 that the Briggs family turned their charitable attention toward Blank Children's Hospital. Even after relocating to California, the Briggs' affection for Blank Children's endured.

When the hospital announced its plans to renovate and expand in2001, the miles between the Briggs' and Blank Children's seemed to disappear. LaVerne and Blaine Briggs sent a gift in honor of the many children who, like their son, need the specialized care that only a children's hospital can provide.

Variety - The Children's Charity of Iowa

Since its first telethon was held in 1975, Variety - The Children's Charity has been one of Blank Children's Hospitals most ardent supporters. Variety's first gift to Blank Children's created the Variety Club Neonatal Intensive Care Nursery, which provided specialized, lifesaving care to thousands of premature and critically ill newborns. To help build a new Intensive Care Nursery, Variety again responded with a significant gift.

Over the years, contributions made through Variety have supported numerous projects throughout Blank Children's, including the John R. Grubb/Variety Club Children's Health Center, the Variety Club Pediatric Therapy Department, the Variety Club Pediatric Emergency Department, the Pediatric Surgery Center and the Neonatal & Pediatric Critical Care Ambulance.

Helen M. Johnson, 1911 - 2009

Helen M. Johnson, from Webster City, left a generous estate gift in her will allowing for the largest gift ever received at Blank Children's Hospital. More than $5 million was given to the Wishes Endowment Campaign. Her substantial gift will establish the Newell S.& Helen M. Johnson Endowment and will support priority needs at Blank Children's Hospital for generations to come.