maple keys

Brooks Maple “Key”

“The legacy of grateful patients and cheerful givers”

Lynn and Jack Brooks describe themselves as lifelong learners, and they have always recognized the importance of education—for their children and grandchildren; for their local community; and for the wider world.

The cheerful giver writing on a hat.

The Brooks’ passion for new knowledge—whether it be about poetry, art, foreign policy, or medicine–is just one reason for their generous donation to the St. Marys Healthcare Foundation, specifically the Recruitment and Retention Fund. With their gift, all healthcare providers and learners at the Happy Valley Family Health Team will benefit from up-to the minute educational tools, such as evidence-based point-of-care decision support databases. Such tools allow healthcare providers to offer their patients leading-edge information on drug interactions, public health issues, and a wide range of medical specialties. St. Marys healthcare providers will also be able to use the Brooks’ legacy gift to supplement the funds provided by the Town of St. Marys to attend conferences and courses to increase their knowledge and their skillset.

One of the key aspects of this gift for software is its mobility, allowing doctors and other healthcare practitioners to access it on tablets, phones, or computers, and whether they are on a house call, in Emergency, or seeing a patient in hospital or in the clinic.

Why “Maple Key Legacy”?

Lynn tells the story of Jack being given a baseball cap by friends. Before they presented it to him, they had the cap embroidered with what they felt was his essence: “The Cheerful Giver.” This is a phrase of St. Paul’s in the New Testament (“The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.)

Lynn and Jack envision their gift seeding the continuation and further development of St Marys’ medical education program, in which all care providers, including learners will have access to educational support.All aspects of our comprehensive care, makes our program highly sought after by new doctors and learners alike.

All Canadians are aware of the maple leaf as a national symbol. The maple key, however, has special significance for the Brooks family. Also known as a “samara,” a Hebrew word that means “guardian” or “protected by God,” a maple key looks like angel wings or like two little wood sprites kissing. The maple key’s design allows the wind to carry the seeds enclosed within it far enough away from the parent tree to ensure access to sunshine and new growth.

Inspired by Nature’s wisdom, Lynn and Jack want to use these maple keys as a symbol of their hope that the Brooks Maple Key Legacy will not only benefit current patients of all ages—but also inspire other grateful patients and cheerful givers to leave their legacy in turn.

Jack’s farming background, his love of nature, his gratitude for first-rate healthcare, and his belief in the need for lifelong education all meet in Brooks Maple Key Legacy. A favourite poem of his, by David Rosenthal, suggests that trees find their place in the circle of life with a certain ease. Humans, Jack believes, need a helping hand from others, like him and Lynn, who give gratefully and cheerfully.

Trees need not walk the earth
For beauty or for bread;
Beauty will come to them
Where they stand.
Here among the children of the sap
Is no pride of ancestry:
A birch may wear no less the morning
Than an oak.
Here are no heirlooms
Save those of loveliness,
In which each tree
Is kingly in its heritage of grace.
Here is but beauty’s wisdom
In which all trees are wise.
Trees need not walk the earth
For beauty or for bread;
Beauty will come to them
In the rainbow—
The sunlight—
And the lilac-haunted rain;
And bread will come to them
As beauty came:
In the rainbow—
In the sunlight—
In the rain.

by David Rosenthal

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