John Fisher lost a dear friend in the 9/11 terror attacks. A decade later, when bombs ravaged the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, feelings of anguish and horror came rushing back for the native Bostonian.
That night, he sent a supportive message to his friend Ron Walls, MD, then chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
“I never expected to hear from him—but at 2 a.m., he texted me to say, ‘John, we’ve got this,’” says Fisher. “My father always said you measure a person’s character at the margin. Amid tragedy, fear, and panic, Ron showed character beyond belief through that crisis.”
Walls, now executive vice president and chief operating officer of Brigham and Women’s Health Care, gave Fisher a greater appreciation for emergency medicine in the wake of mass violence.
Flash forward a couple years, BWH has developed plans to nearly double the emergency department’s space and improve the ability to serve more patients. To pay tribute to Walls and bolster BWH’s emergency response, Fisher has stepped forward with a gift of $100,000.
“When our city is hit by an unexpected crisis, the ER is our first defense against further suffering and loss,” Fisher says. “As citizens of the greater Boston community, we need to celebrate institutions like the Brigham and the people who make them so extraordinary.”