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ALSAC/St. Jude bids farewell to Richard C. Shadyac Sr.

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Friends, family and colleagues are mourning the loss of former ALSAC CEO Richard C. Shadyac Sr., who served from 1992 to 2005. He died September 16, 2009 after battling a long-term illness.

Shadyac left an indelible mark on ALSAC during his tenure as CEO, helping to shepherd the fundraising organization through the death of St. Jude founder Danny Thomas and presiding over a four-fold increase in fundraising to support the growing needs of St. Jude.

David L. McKee, ALSAC’s chief operating officer, served with Shadyac throughout his tenure. “Mr. Shadyac always said that being CEO of ALSAC wasn’t a job. It was a love affair,” McKee said. “We will always remember his devotion, his commitment and his love for the children of St. Jude. He motivated his staff to achieve their best through his own dedication, and he invested his all into raising the funds that St. Jude needed to continue its lifesaving work.”

Shadyac, a former attorney, joined the ALSAC/St. Jude Boards of Directors and Governors in 1963 and acted as general counsel for ALSAC. He served as chairman of the ALSAC Board of Directors in the 1960s and 1970s and as the chairman of the St. Jude Board of Governors in the 1980s. In 1992, he was appointed CEO of ALSAC following the retirement of Baddia J. Rashid. He retired in 2005, but continued to serve as a member of the Board.

Camille Sarrouf Jr., chairman of the ALSAC Board of Directors, said the Board has been forever shaped by his leadership and indebted to his service. “The Board of Directors feels a great loss today. We have lost one of the legends of our organization and arguably the most tireless advocate of our cause since Danny Thomas and Mike Tamer, the first CEO of ALSAC, launched this remarkable institution.”

Joseph G. Shaker, who served as chairman of the ALSAC Board of Directors during Shadyac’s tenure as CEO, offered praise by comparing Shadyac to St. Jude founder Danny Thomas, saying “When you say Danny Thomas, the next words you say are Dick Shadyac. You can’t get any closer to living the legend of Danny Thomas than through Dick Shadyac. The entire St. Jude family is going to miss him greatly.”

Shadyac was a close friend and confidant of founder Danny Thomas, and he played a critical role in ensuring the stability of ALSAC and St. Jude after Danny’s death, which occurred shortly before he became CEO. The loss of the organization’s most visible fundraiser and champion meant Shadyac had to find a new voice to tell the St. Jude story. Shadyac found his answer in the children and families of St. Jude, and their stories have helped spread the mission of the hospital to donors and supporters across the country ever since.

Dr. William E. Evans, director and CEO of St. Jude, said Shadyac always did what it took to support the mission of St. Jude. “As a Board member and then as ALSAC CEO, Dick Shadyac was always there for us, doing whatever was necessary to ensure we had the resources to provide unsurpassed patient care and world-class research for children with catastrophic diseases. He never lost his drive or his focus--it was always on the children.”

Shadyac was known as a father figure to the patients and families of St. Jude, and upon his retirement in 2005, he spoke of his legacy and the patients who were always in his heart, saying “I hope that people think I did a good job. I hope that they feel that I gave it my best. And I want them to remember how much I love the children.”

Marlo Thomas, national outreach director of St. Jude and daughter of founder Danny Thomas, called Shadyac one of the great leaders in the organization’s history. “Dick Shadyac was a tireless champion of our mission and every child and their parents who walked through the doors of St. Jude. We are not just losing a great man, we are losing a patriarch of our St Jude family who played a critical role in the history of St. Jude and ALSAC. He is with my dear father now. I hope we make them proud as we follow the path they have set for us.”

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Records 26 - 50 of 124

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Sandra Johnson
Mon, Aug 09, 2010
We will never forget you here at St. Jude.

Kenneth P. Nasif
Sun, Jun 13, 2010
He will be remembered fondly for his tireles efforts in behalf of ALSAC. Hopefully these positive accomplishments will outshine and bury his controversial role as foreign agent for Lybia.

Jamie Farr
Tue, Oct 27, 2009
Thanks to Richard I became a member of the St. Jude Advisory Board. Richard loved life and loved St. Jude Children's Hospital. I shall miss his smile, his enthusiasm and his devotion to all things which make our world better. Jamie Farr

Nancy & Joe Shadyac
Mon, Oct 19, 2009
Our hearts and prayers are with all of you. Uncle Dick had a gracious, loving heart. So sorry to hear of his passing.

Janice Hill
Tue, Sep 29, 2009
Although I did not have the pleasure of working at ALSAC/St. Jude under Mr. Shadyac's leadership, his care and devotion to the children and our mission is palpable still today. All of us are blessed by his legacy.

Shirley Indriolo
Fri, Sep 25, 2009
Kahlil Gibran wrote: "For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one." Mr. Shadyac is indeed one with the mission of St. Jude. His strength, wisdom, and tender compassion enriched me, and I will forever remember him.

Suzanne Klein
Thu, Sep 24, 2009
I truly feel blessed to have know Mr. Shadyac having joined ALSAC/St. Jude under his tenure. Although he could be tough on us at times, it was all in an effort to bring out our best in order to better help the kids of St. Jude. He always greeted me with a smile and a hug when I would visit from the field and had a way of making everyone who met him feel special. He will surely be missed but never forgotten, and what a wonderful legacy he leaves.

Tim Nelson
Thu, Sep 24, 2009
It was a pleasure to work for Mr. Shadyac. You will never meet a person who was more sincere than he was or who had a greater passion for the children of St. Jude. He always motivated you when he spoke and never failed to tell all of the staff that he loved each and every one of us. It was clear when he spoke that he was a man of deep faith and I hope the family can take comfort in this. He left a great impression that will always remain at St. Jude and it was a honor to know him.

Zofia Czerny Schmidt
Wed, Sep 23, 2009
I want to make sure that all of you understand what Richard Shadyac means to me. Richard was very instrumental in my son, Gregory Czerny being admitted to St. Jude. Richard's concern for the kids and their well-being was very evident in everything he did. The kids were his life, and he always let them know how important they were to him. Greg and the other kids were always happy to see him.
We will miss him terribly.

Wed, Sep 23, 2009
Knowing Richard Shadyac has been one of the blessings in my life. Working with him on a number of charities and seeing his ability to motivate was an inspiration that I carry with me always.

Wed, Sep 23, 2009
On behalf of the volunteers who started the annual All That Jazz Charity Dinner and Dance for St. Jude Children's Hospital It began with Richard and we are now in our 16th year. It was your caring for the children that motivated us to continue the promise of helping the children of St. Jude.

Chaz Corzine
Wed, Sep 23, 2009
What a great honor for me to know Mr. Shadyac. He inspired you the minute you met him. He made a difference in the lives of so many. What a great and wonderful man. Bless him.....

Leslie Davidson
Wed, Sep 23, 2009
Mr. Shadyac was born to lead St. Jude...his vision challenged everyone to do their BEST. He was my friend and the "father" I would love to have had in the 11 years we worked together. I am THANKFUL for his life and his legacy with Rick leading us now. Love to all the Shadyac Family xox

Rebecca Toth RN BSN
Wed, Sep 23, 2009
My thoughts and prayers to the family, friends and every person who's life he touched.

Christy Taylor
Tue, Sep 22, 2009
Mr. Shadyac was truly a remarkable leader. His passion and enthusiasm for St. Jude were obvious to everyone who spent time with him. He led by example and with such heart! It is an honor to have had the opportunity to work for him.

Ghassan and Manal Saab
Tue, Sep 22, 2009
We will miss you. You certainly left your footprints in so many corners of the world to remind us of you. Rest in peace knowing that you have transformed Danny's dream into one of the great charitable and medical success stories in American history.

Deirdre Prachett
Tue, Sep 22, 2009
Mr. Shadyac was a great leader. When you heard him speak about the hospital, the children and the mission, he spoke with such passion and dedication. I am proud to have met such a man and will never forget him.

Julie Butler
Tue, Sep 22, 2009
"Mr. Shadyac" is one of the greatest men I will ever know. He was a leader who CARED about everyone involved in the mission of St. Jude - patients, families, doctors, nurses, janitors, fund raisers, volunteers, donors. He welcomed us all into "his" family of St. Jude...and he treated us all like family. His guidance, encouragement, trust and leadership were the guiding forces for so many of us who call ourselves "lifers" at ALSAC. The world has lost an incredible man, but we have gained an angel to keep guiding us in the direction of helping others and giving hope to sick children. God bless you, Mr. Shadyac!

J.M. Haggar, Jr.
Tue, Sep 22, 2009
Dick Shadyac was truly a remarkable man. His leadership, inspiration and drive will be sorely missed. He was a patriarch of the St. Jude mission and having known him for many years as a board member of St. Jude, I can truly say he had a love affair with St. Jude and the children. His number one thought was always "How can we find a way to help these kids?" He will certainly be missed, but his wisdom, inspiration and energy will always remain with ALSAC and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

ESA California State Council - Chaplain
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
Members of ESA California will miss Mr. Shadyac. It was a privilege and gift to have known Mr. Shadyac and share in his love for St. Jude's. He will be missed by many, but his legacy will continue for years to come.

Martha Escobedo
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
We are sorry to hear of the death of Mr. Shadyac. Epsilon Sigma Alpha-Mid Valley Regional Council of California are thinking and praying for you.

Dore' Charbonneau
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
It has been an incredible privilege to know the great Dick Shadyac and his wonderful family.
May God bless and comfort each of you.

Keith Maples
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
Mr. Shadyac you made a positve impression on everyone you met. You have been and always will be remembered as a wonderful individual who cared more about others than yourself. Without your leadership we wouldn't be where we are today. Thank you for allowing me to work for the best organization around. You will be missed but never forgotten. God Bless you Mr. Shadyac!

Lisa Costello - ALSAC Employee
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
Mr. Shadyac has done so much to further ALSAC during his lifelong "love affair" with St. Jude. Thank you Mr. Shadyac for giving your life and soul to our organization for these beautiful kids! One of my dearest co-workers, a former patient considered you one of a kind. Thank you for the difference you made in her life times a-thousand!!

John Bedway
Mon, Sep 21, 2009
My prayers go out to the family and friends. Dick was a wonderful man and inspiration to many, but most importantly, he was a very nice man.

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