IRMC Has Come So Far
More than 20 years ago, Tony and Joyce Caldarone left Massachusetts aboard their sport-fishing boat looking for Florida's perfect retirement spot. After docking just one night at the former Riomar Bay Yacht Club, Joyce convinced Tony they needed to go no further. "The chemistry was great," Tony admitted. But before making their final decision, they needed to know more about the community. Paramount among their concerns was the hospital. "We wanted a quality hospital in our backyard if we were going to spend our retirement years here," Joyce explained. "Back then, we had some concerns that we may need to go elsewhere when health issues arose."
But, thanks to the generosity and foresight of many IRMC supporters over the past two decades, those concerns have been alleviated.
Today as residents and members of The Moorings, Joyce and Tony are exceptionally pleased with their waterfront home and also with Indian River Medical Center. "The hospital has made tremendous advancements," Tony said. "And, of course, the medical center will continue to excel thanks to the affiliation of our Heart Center with Duke University Health System, the excellent work being done by Dr. Cary Stowe and his team, and the leadership provided by medical center CEO Jeff Susi."
The Caldarones understand well that philanthropy has played a major role in such advancements. They both have a special appreciation for the importance of philanthropy because their son, Christopher, is a highly regarded pediatric heart surgeon. "Without philanthropy, it's not possible for community medical centers to keep up with advancements in technology and capital needs," Tony explained.
That belief was reinforced after Tony joined his son on a special humanitarian mission. Tony was by his son’s side as he led a medical team to China to treat children with congenital heart defects and to teach the latest techniques to local surgeons. "It was a marvelous and overwhelming experience," Tony recalled. "Parents from all over the province brought their small children, hoping and praying they would be selected for surgery." The condition of the hospital was less than sanitary, he observed. "We take so much for granted and often fail to appreciate how accessible and advanced our own medical care is."
Committed to keeping the latest, most advanced technology in their community, Tony and Joyce have been proud supporters of IRMC, are members of The Eagle Society, and were generous contributors to The 21st Century Campaign. They also actively encouraged their friends and neighbors to join them in getting involved in a meaningful way. "We have come so far and we need to keep the momentum going," Joyce said. "We can't stand still. We must continue to improve."