Ralph Wilson Jr. Leaves Footprint On Western New York Community

March 26, 2014 Updated Mar 26, 2014 at 7:16 PM EDT

By Hannah Buehler

March 26, 2014 Updated Mar 26, 2014 at 7:16 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) Ralph Wilson Jr. touched the lives of so many though his charitable work, and left a mark in the Western New York Community.

“He cared about Western New York, said Dr. Candace Johnson, PHD, Deputy Director at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. “It was very important for him to give back to this community.”

Wilson was heavily involved in medical research. Through the Ralph Wilson Foundation, he has donated more than 11-million-dollars to Roswell Park Cancer Institute since 1999.

“Mr. Wilson was very passionate about the care of patients and patient activity,” said Johnson. “This money would go to innovative research projects for our scientists”

Most recently, Wilson was a member of the “Circle of Ten” donors who came together to create the Roswell Park Clinical Sciences Center. The Center is a state-of-the-art chemotherapy center, set to open in 2015.

Ralph Wilson and his wife Mary were also very involved in giving back to the Hospice foundation. Those who knew him say he gave quietly, generously and was never looking for recognition.

“I don't think people realize how generous he was to the community...both on an individual level and an organizational level,” said Patrick Flynn, President of the Hospice Foundation of Western New York.

Wilson endowed work being done at the Hospice Impatient Unit, as well as creating the Mary & Ralph Wilson Jr. Counseling Center.

“Mr. Wilson felt so sure that he wanted to make a difference in those people's lives at the end of their lives...make sure they were really cared for,” said Flynn.

Those who remember him, remember his kind, heartfelt generosity.

“He was a humble person,” said Flynn. “It was more important to him to give quietly, and to be humble about that.”

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