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Past Heroes – 2003

RARE Everyday Hero Stories


2003 - Dr. Valerie Castle
Cancer Research
2003 - Sister Mary Ellen Howard
Everyday Hero
Dr. Valerie Castle
Chief of Pedatric Medicine, University of Michigan Children’s Hospital

About this Everyday Hero

Dr. Valerie P. Castle, M.D. was selected for her dedication to the clinical care of children with cancer as well as her efforts in cancer research; and because she led the effort to establish the Late Effects Clinic for Childhood Cancer Survivors at the University of Michigan’s Comprehensive Cancer Center. The clinic was established to help an emerging generation of adults who survived childhood cancer with their continuing care. In addition to providing comprehensive follow-up treatment, the clinic has become an advocate for childhood cancer survivors who face discrimination in attaining employment or health insurance.

According to her colleagues who nominated her, "Countless young people have been touched by Val’s remarkable gifts. Without a doubt children and teens who struggle each day will find hope and courage to pursue their dreams.In her work ethic and her interactions with others, she’s an unbeatable model for young people to emulate."

Everyday Hero
Sister Mary Ellen Howard
Executive Director, St. Frances Cabrini Health Care Clinic

About this Everyday Hero

The Cabrini Clinic in Detroit’s Corktown is the oldest free clinic in nation, and annually serves over 1,500 uninsured. As its Director, Sister Mary Ellen does virtually everything from assisting in the pharmacy, to counseling patients, to raising the funds to keep the Clinic operating. She is driven by an "absolutely unabating commitment to service for the poor", said her Nominator, Rick Young, a local health administrator and member of the Cabrini Board. "She approaches her mission with extraordinary passion, she is an advocate for her patients and the community, and has been successful in giving hope and making a difference in the lives of thousands of people each year".