Legacy gift reflects love for community

“The Syracuse community is a part of us. We wanted to give back. ” – Ceme Curley

A legacy gift as part of Jim and Ceme Curley’s estate plan is just one more step in an enduring relationship with the Upstate Foundation. It started more than 25 years ago, when Jim was president of McLane Northeast in Baldwinsville. The company got involved then with Children’s Miracle Network (CMN), and Jim presented a surprise check for a $100,000 donation during the CMN telethon. Over the years, the Curleys’ sons participated through the “Save the Pennies” campaign with their friends and McLane employees enthusiastically joined the effort. The company itself still participates today in CMN fundraising for Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital.

The family’s relationship with Upstate deepened when Jim served on the Upstate Foundation board of directors from 1991 to 1994. He was able to experience the other side of philanthropy by serving on the committee that reviewed funding requests from pediatric doctors and staff. He was struck by the fact that the need was always so much greater than the funds available.

Jim was transferred to Florida soon after that but it’s clear that Central New York holds a treasured place in the Curleys’ hearts as they now split their time between the two locations.

About their legacy gift, Ceme said, “The Syracuse community is a part of us. We wanted to give back. And, we respect Upstate University Hospital.”

Their planned bequest has profound personal meaning for them. Initially, their gift was going to be directed to the Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital because of their steadfast belief in its mission. However, after Ceme developed lymphoma, they decided to redirect the gift to the Upstate Cancer Center, a place she came to know well through her grueling course of radiation and chemotherapy.

Jim noted, “Once you’ve lived through cancer, you want to make this difficult situation a little easier for someone else.”


For more information about ways to create your own personal Legacy, contact your financial advisor or call the Upstate Foundation, 315-464-4416.