Susan Hall and Harold Malion don’t measure their commitment to UNC Lineberger in dollars and cents, but rather by the potential for good that they believe research can do and what they see in the future for cancer patients at the North Carolina Cancer Hospital, the clinical home of UNC Lineberger.
Hall of St. Pauls, North Carolina, and Malion of Fairmont, North Carolina are cousins, born and raised in the state, and it’s important to both that they support their fellow North Carolinians and the challenges imposed by a cancer diagnosis.
“I’m impressed by our cancer research in North Carolina, and it’s just outstanding for our state and for the country. I like to support local,” Hall, 72, said. “What I give is not but a little bit; it’s not a great amount, but any little piece can be part of a big piece. That’s what I do. I want to be part of helping someone else.”
Malion, 76, a graduate of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, comes from a long line of health care workers, and as a pharmacist, he often saw first-hand the benefits of research on people’s health. “Any little bit of help that you can give to enhance the research and keep it going is important,” he said. “The more you give, eventually something will benefit from what you give.”
Malion gives to the School of Pharmacy and to UNC Lineberger, and with Hall, now supports the Urologic Oncology Fund for Excellence and the work of UNC Lineberger’s Angela Smith, MD, MS.
“What I give is not but a little bit; it’s not a great amount, but any little piece can be part of a big piece. That’s what I do. I want to be part of helping someone else.”
Supporting urologic oncology research
Hall said she wants to support Smith, and that her work has really impressed her. “I have known Dr. Smith for several years, and her research is brilliant,” Hall said. “She’s a tremendous asset, not only to us in North Carolina, but anywhere in the world. We’re lucky to have doctors like her here.”
“I’ve been impressed by all the different aspects of treatment in urological cancers,” Malion said. “The research is exciting, and as long as they can do that research and continue to make improvements in cancer treatment, I think it’s a worthwhile cause.”
Malion said he knows that grant funding doesn’t often fill all the needs researchers have, and he wants to help fill in those blanks. “There’s never enough funding to go around,” he said. “And cancer is one thing that’s been around forever, and there are some cures, but there’s still room for more improvements. [Smith] has achieved some tremendous goals, and I want to support that.”
Hall and Malion said their families were always there to lend a hand to someone in need while they were growing up, and they hope that their children and grandchildren see the example they’ve set and follow in those same footsteps.
“My parents have always said ‘we need to respect everything and look out for situations.’ Helping others was a normal thing that they did. I’m really proud of them for doing that ahead of their time. That’s what they taught me to do,” Hall said.
Malion said his college-age grandson might go into research, something that makes him proud. “Giving is a priority for us, and I hope my children will continue what we’ve set up, and I think they will. We’re fortunate to be able to give something, that’s what’s important,” he said.
Hall and Malion said they are lucky and fortunate to have such top-notch care and advanced research at UNC Lineberger, and they hope others follow their lead and consider supporting the cause.
“If you feel like you can give, and it’s the right thing to give to, give what you can,” Malion said. “Even if it’s just a dollar, it counts. Give from your heart, and hope it can make a difference.”