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Marshall Eliuk Donates $1.5 Million to BC Cancer – Kelowna

April 12, 2024

The BC Cancer Foundation is honoured to announce a $1.5 million donation from philanthropist and businessman Marshall Eliuk to help bring a new state-of-the-art systemic therapy suite to BC Cancer – Kelowna.

Named the “Marshall Eliuk Systemic Therapy Suite” in recognition of his generosity, the suite will increase BC Cancer – Kelowna’s capacity to deliver drug treatments, including chemotherapy and immunotherapy, by a critical 40%. It will also create the infrastructure to offer early phase clinical trials in the Interior – to dramatically accelerate research from lab to patients – making these life-saving treatments more accessible to local patients who currently can only participate in these trials in Vancouver.

Marshall is an Alberta-based businessman, well-known for his philanthropic commitment to his communities and passion for supporting healthcare projects. He spends part of his time in Kelowna. He was inspired to make this gift by his love for the city and after learning about BC Cancer – Kelowna’s innovative research.

Marshall’s dedication to healthcare began after he was diagnosed with aplastic anemia in the ‘90s. The rare blood disorder impacts one in a million people and affects bone marrow’s ability to produce new blood cells. At the time, the only potential cure was a stem cell transplant – impossible without a cord blood bank to find a match. Marshall came close to death numerous times over nine months, kept alive by bi-weekly platelet transfusions until he seemingly miraculously recovered almost overnight.

To show his appreciation for generous blood donors who saved his life, he donated $1.5 million to create a national stem cell cord bank. He has spent the nearly three-decades since supporting numerous healthcare projects in B.C. and Alberta to show his gratitude.

“My wife Judi and I have many beloved family, friends, past customers and employees who currently enjoy this great Okanagan Valley, like ourselves, or have future plans to move to this beautiful valley,” says Marshall. “It’s an honour to give back, especially having experienced firsthand the impact donor support has during health challenges. Cancer is far too common, but I hope this new suite brings hope to families facing this terrible disease.”

“The Marshall Eliuk Systemic Therapy Suite will not only enhance our care capabilities but also bring cutting-edge treatments closer to home for our patients in the Interior,” says Dr. Ross Halperin, BC Cancer – Kelowna’s Executive Medical Director. “We’re grateful for this transformational gift that is fueling our mission at BC Cancer – Kelowna to remain at the forefront of world-class cancer care close to home.”

Today’s announcement marks the second $1.5 million donation to the BC Cancer Foundation’s $6.1 million fundraising campaign. The first was contributed by the Bannister family in fall 2023 and was the largest gift the Foundation had received in the Interior towards this campaign at the time.

To join Marshall in transforming cancer care in the Interior, visit: bccancerfoundation.com/interior