When I first began volunteering at Riverside Walter Reed in 1977, I knew that I had found a special place. Looking back my mind is flooded with fond memories and gratitude towards the doctors, the nurses and the generous people that make this hospital so exceptional. I can tell you from first hand experience that donations make a difference. Everything from state-of–the-art CT scanners to wheelchairs and patient beds have been purchased with money donated by our community.

This year, if you choose to give, your donation to the Tree of Lights fundraiser will go towards building a much-needed Healing Garden — a serene, quiet place where cancer patients can find peace and encouragement. The Riverside Walter Reed Volunteers have already made a $5,000 donation to make this garden a reality in hopes that it will inspire you to support this worthwhile cause.

Your donations to The Tree of Lights can be represented as a single light for $15 or a light on the star for $35. These symbolic adornments will fill a lavish tree that will be unveiled at The Tree of Lights Grand Illumination on December 12 at 6:00 p.m. on the Riverside Walter Reed campus. Please consider donating a light in honor or memory of a loved one, doctor or caregiver that had a positive impact on your life. To show our thanks, the volunteers will send a personalized Holiday Card to those you choose to honor. Imagine the joy they’ll feel when they realize they were the inspiration for your gift: a gift that will help others in such a profound way.

Your donations are needed now more than ever! Did you know that last year Riverside Walter Reed Hospital provided over $10 million in charity care to those in desperate need and that staggering number continues to grow? Please remember it is fundraisers like this and the kind hearts of people like you that make it possible for us to always be here for our neighbors and friends.

This year’s campaign is dedicated to the memory of Gayanne Lamos. Gayanne served 34 years as a volunteer of Riverside Walter Reed Hospital. Her spirit of service continues to inspire us all. She reminds us that life is about what you can give to another person and the importance of thanking the people in your life who make a difference. And this year, she’s my star on the tree.

Earline Miller
RWRH volunteer

p.s. I hope to see you at Riverside Walter Reed Hospital on December 12th and together we will celebrate The Tree of Lights 30 years of giving!

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