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Brent’s Story


At St. Mary’s General Hospital, we consider ourselves blessed to have benefitted from the incredible support of this great community for 90 years. In that time we have had the opportunity to meet numerous donors who have often thought of great fundraising ideas to help us out. From the initial $150,000 raised to build our hospital in 1924 to the numerous bake sales, golf tournaments and even bingo nights, we’ve have had the privilege to see it all.

Most recently though, it was a young donor who reminded us of what it means to be a philanthropist. Brent Thornton, a manager at a local high-tech company, wanted to give back to the community that has been good to him and his family. With February approaching, he and his friends decided to throw a party for Valentine’s Day and raise money for the Cardiac Care Centre at St. Mary’s.

Brent explains why he and his friends—co-event planners Mike Civak and Shawn Fuller—decided to hold an event for St. Mary’s. “We wanted to find a way to have a good time while giving back to a local charity. Holding a Valentine’s Day event for our local cardiac centre made perfect sense,” says Brent.

He added that for people of his age and stage in life, the ability to make a large personal donation is not easy. “Most people our age are still busy raising their families, securing jobs and paying their mortgage so the ability to make a large personal donation to charity is difficult. By bringing people together at an event like this with a reasonable ticket price and some great silent auction items, we had a much larger impact than any of us could have had on our own.”

While the event required a lot of hard work and planning, they were ecstatic about the results. The turnout was great and they raised over $2,000, which was more than double what they had hoped. The support and generosity from their friends, family and community Brent describes as “incredible.”

Brent, Mike and Shawn look forward to potentially making their “party for a purpose” an annual tradition. Brent hopes to inspire other young people to start their own fundraising initiatives and will happily lend a helping hand to get them on track.

By being creative, innovative and goal-oriented, Brent proves that everyone has the ability to do their part and give back to the community. “Just keep the feel-good goal in mind and you will succeed,” he says.

At St. Mary’s, we’ve been fortunate to have people like Brent helping us out for 90 years and it is because of them that we have been able to serve our community for generations.