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Published on August 20, 2020

Health heroes honored by cancer fundraising group

Soiree on the Bay

Like so many other events this year, the annual Soiree On the Bay fundraiser for local cancer care was put on hold until next year. But the event’s organizers haven’t been idle.

The organizing committee decided they wanted to “Save the Spirit” by Soirée-ing a new way. They turned their focus to local healthcare workers and pay tribute to each and every employee of Cape Cod Healthcare for their work in this most challenging year.

“We were disappointed that we couldn’t do the Soiree this year, so we decided that we wanted to find some other way to show our support,” said committee member Melissa Marchand. “We decided that the best thing we could do would be to honor all the people who are giving 100 percent. We wanted to be there for the Cape Cod Healthcare employees, the way they have been there for us.”

So, the committee selected all team members of Cape Cod Healthcare as their 2020 Soirée on the Bay Honorees - and they meant everyone.

This week, all CCHC honorees will receive a specially-designed reproduction of the committee’s signature Cotuit Bay at Sunset photograph taken by Marchand and enhanced and inscribed by former White House chief calligrapher (and Harwich native) Rick Paulus. The volunteers on the Soiree committee chipped in to have 6,000 copies of the cards printed.

The card includes the Soiree’s theme to, “Live, Laugh, Love.” The message on the card reads, in part: “To the courageous team at Cape Cod Healthcare, our hearts are filled with gratitude for your dedication during this pandemic. … We are forever grateful for your endless efforts to ensure our community’s health and safety.”

The committee also included language on the back of the card commemorating the 100th anniversary this year of the founding of Cape Cod Hospital.

Along with Marchand, committee members Alice O’Neill and Sharon Kennedy joined Cape Cod Healthcare President and CEO Michael Lauf on Wednesday, Aug. 19 to present the original artwork to be displayed in the lobbies of Cape Cod Hospital and Falmouth Hospital, allowing all who enter to join in their celebration of the 2020 Soiree Honorees.

Lauf called the committee members “big thinkers” who have the interest of their fellow Cape Codders at the heart of all they do. He commended their dedication and drive to raise funds for cancer care and to honor healthcare professionals.

“I hope everyone who comes into our hospitals sees what I see when they look at this special print,” said Lauf. “It’s easy for me to say thank you to our workers, but it’s important – and meaningful – for them to hear this from the community.”

In addition to the framed prints that will hang in the Cape Cod Hospital and Falmouth Hospital lobbies, the committee presented a third commemorative photo to Lauf as a token of thanks for his leadership and support, particularly during the COVID-19 crisis.

“We have felt safe in all of this because of your leadership,” O’Neill told Lauf.

The slideshow below features some of the CCHC clinical employees who are being honored by the Soirée On the Bay Committee. 

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Soiree Background

The committee for Soirée On the Bay, To Live, Laugh, Love, is a volunteer group that has raised funds to support Cancer Services at Cape Cod Healthcare for more than 17 years. Last year’s event was a record breaker, raising almost $220,000 to support Cape Cod Healthcare's oncology nutrition, transportation and lodging programs, as well as an endowment fund for Alice’s Classroom, an informational and educational resource for people with cancer, named in honor of Alice O’Neill.

“The event has evolved over the years, and we’re delighted that all of the proceeds will stay local and help our Cape Cod neighbors,” said Kennedy.

The Soiree is organized by a team of local volunteers. In addition to Kennedy, O’Neill and Marchand, the committee includes Phyllis Connelly, Barbara Dunn, Susan Ellis, Kathryn Norton, and Diane Salomone.

Those who wish to join the committee members in their salute to local healthcare workers may do so in two ways:

  • Write a letter of appreciation and mail it to Cape Cod Healthcare Foundation, P.O. Box 370, Hyannis, MA 02601.
  • Donate to the CCHC Employee Hardship Fund, which is subsidized by voluntary charitable donations. Donations may be made online on the “Ways to Give” section of the CCHC website, or can be mailed to the Cape Cod Healthcare Foundation, P.O. Box 370, Hyannis, MA 02601.

Image (left to right): Cape Cod Healthcare President and CEO Michael Lauf, Soiree on the Bay Committee members Alice O’Neill, Sharon Kennedy and Mel Marchand present artwork dedicated to healthcare workers at CCHC.