Dentist's estate gives hospital $35M

A retired dentist's estate has donated $35 million to University Hospitals (UH) Case Medical Center in Cleveland -- the largest donation the hospital has ever received.

The gift, from the estate of Dr. Donald J. Goodman and Ruth Weber Goodman, will support UH's cancer care program. In honor of the donation, UH has established the Dr. Donald J. and Ruth Weber Goodman Discovery Center for Clinical Research in the new UH Cancer Hospital.

Ten years ago, Dr. Goodman was the first patient internationally to receive a novel cancer drug, Mylotarg, as a first-line treatment for his aggressive leukemia at the UH Ireland Cancer Center, the hospital noted in a press release. Twelve days later he was cancer-free, but he succumbed to leukemia in 2007.

As both patients and benefactors, the Goodmans had a long relationship with UH and credited UH's outstanding care with saving both of their lives, the hospital noted. They were inaugural members of UH's National Cancer Leadership Council and in 2004 shared their intention to remember UH in their estate plan.

"We are honored that Don and Ruth named University Hospitals as the most significant beneficiary of the Dr. Donald J. Goodman and Ruth Weber Goodman Philanthropic Fund at the Cleveland Foundation," said Fred Rothstein, M.D., president of UH Case Medical Center, in the release. "The Goodmans were passionate about the importance of clinical trials to advancing new treatments and a cure for cancer. Their dedication, along with their family, promises to change the face of cancer care for Northeast Ohio and beyond for generations to come."

In 2008, the Goodman estate left $39 million to the Cleveland Foundation to support research at Case Western Reserve and University Hospitals.

Dr. Goodman had invested in the stock market "for decades," according to news reports, and his wife was heiress to the estate of her father, Arthur Weber, who founded Triplex Screw.

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