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HEALTH CARE: Young family donates $1 million to Munson cardiac lab

The Record-Eagle - 5/23/2024

May 23—TRAVERSE CITY — Local philanthropists Bob and Pauline Young have donated $1 million to the cardiac catheterization lab at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City. The gift is in honor of their son, Michael, who died in 2021 from a cardiac incident in Hawaii.

The money will be used to equip three of Munson's cardiac labs with Philips Azurion 7 imaging technology, which enables doctors to perform complex cardiac and peripheral procedures using "simplified 3D visualization and measurements" during surgery.

"Mike loved the Hawaiian Islands and woodworking was one of his passions," said Bob Young. "We could not imagine a more fitting way to honor his memory than giving to an organization that has such a positive impact on people's lives, just as he did."

A sign crafted from Koa wood, unique to the Hawaiian Islands, now hangs near the cath lab to honor Michael and the Young family.

This is not the first time that Bob, 92, and Pauline, 90, have made such a generous gift in the name of a loved one, MHC officials said.

About 10 years ago, the Youngs were among the first to support construction of the Cowell Family Cancer Center with a $1 million donation in honor of Pauline's brother, Dr. Malcom Bagshaw, who pioneered radiation therapy as a resident at the University of Michigan and, later, at Stanford University.

Since the 1970s, the couple has donated funds for hospice services, women's health, an expansion of the MHC emergency department and general patient needs.

Their generosity isn't limited to medical care, however. The Youngs have also supported many other nonprofits in the area, including the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, Inland Seas Education Association and the Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation.

"Bob and Pauline truly embody the powerful impact that philanthropy can make in a community," said Ed Ness, Munson president and chief executive officer. "Their generosity and commitment to Munson Healthcare plays a vital role in supporting our mission to deliver on our exceptional cardiac care to the 500,000 people we serve across Northern Michigan."

Bob Young founded the R.M. Young Company about 60 years ago, a company spokeswoman said. Today, the firm makes precision meteorological instruments for a wide variety of applications, from weather data collection and marine climate observation to pollution monitoring and atmospheric research.

Some of the company's equipment is used by researchers at the Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire, the highest peak in the northeastern United States.

Bob and Pauline Young still live in the Traverse City area.

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