- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Loudoun Hospital Center officials said yesterday they have received a $13 million gift from a longtime benefactor whose older sister spent her final days there.

The first experience Ruth Martine Lunn had with the hospital was in the early 1990s, when her older sister, Margaret, was in the nursing and rehabilitation center dying of multiple sclerosis, said David Goldberg, a Loudoun Health Care vice president.

He also said Miss Lunn felt a great deal of appreciation for the care her ailing sister received and that she randomly would come through the hospital just to see how things were going.

The gift is the largest in the center’s history.

Miss Lunn died Feb. 12 at age 87 and left the hospital her entire estate — including liquid assets, securities, three rental properties and her Arlington home. The hospital will also take full ownership of 40-acres she gave for the Lansdowne campus in Leesburg.

A charitable land trust she established for the hospital in the early 1990s provided the land the hospital used in 1997 to build the Lansdowne facility.

“What she has given us the ability to do is improve services, shore up our finances and expand care,” Mr. Goldberg said.

He said the money will help the hospital better serve the county because it can pay debts, which will make money available to expand cancer-care and add cardiac-care services. Mr. Goldberg said the money also will help the hospital expand services throughout the county.

“We’ll be very diligent with all dollars,” he said. “But this gives us much more flexibility.”

The real estate that Miss Lunn left, except for the plot on which the Lansdowne center is based, will be sold quickly, pending board approval, so the hospital can start expanding services, Mr. Goldberg said.

He recalled a story of Miss Lunn walking through the hospital, pointing out spaces that weren’t being used and saying the hospital was wasting space that could go to patients.

“She had her host of positions, and she shared them with all,” Mr Goldberg said.

Miss Lunn was a psychotherapist in the District in the 1950s, but in her ‘60s she switched careers and become involved with real estate.

She was proud of the hospital in good times and very concerned with it in rough times, but she always wanted to know specifically what was going on and how the hospital was progressing, Mr. Goldberg said.

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