PEORIA - A longtime nurse is sharing her memories of the man who brought part of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital to Peoria.
Jim Maloof founded the Midwest Affiliate and served as a chairman of the board until his death Saturday night.
Nurse Ruth Kuhrts said she'll always remember how Maloof put his heart and soul into helping the children. She said Maloof's legacy will live on through the hospital and through the many children who've received its care.
Kuhrts remembers how hard Maloof worked to bring part of the St. Jude Children's Hospital to Peoria.
She said, "Jim Maloof has been here from the beginning. If it wasn't for him, we wouldn't have the affiliate here."
Maloof was a part of the
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital from the very beginning. He had a hand in
starting the first hospital in Memphis, and many said his proudest achievement
was founding the Midwest affiliate here in Peoria. Kuhrts said, "I just think
his heart and soul is in this clinic and it will stay in this clinic."
She said she'll remember Maloof for his dedication to the kids. She said he knew every patient by name, and he always brought a smile. "He was just a friend to everyone. He loved every child he ever saw. He was warm, generous."
Many agree that because of Maloof, thousands of children will get the care they need, and many will beat the odds. Kuhrts said, "We will forever be grateful and I think the kids, we will always keep him in our heart and spirit of the clinic."
Kuhrts said she'll miss Maloof's positive personality and his ability to dream big.