In Memory of Palma Lavalle, Family and Friends Donate to Humber River Hospital

February 13, 2019

Palma and Rocco

Palma Lavalle emigrated from Italy in the early 1950s to be with her late husband Rocco, the love of her life. She was the proud mother of three children, and a caring Nonna to six grandchildren. Palma was family-oriented and over the years, her home was full of laughter and family dinners. When Rocco passed away twelve years ago, their family raised money for Humber River Hospital.

As a donor, Palma was particularly proud to have the new Hospital in her community.

“Humber was her hospital,” says Palma’s daughter Jacqueline. “She referred to it as ‘my hospital.’ When she was an inpatient on the eighth floor, she could look out the window and see her house.”

Palma was known for her elegance. In her final years, even as her COPD and CHF became increasingly difficult to live with, she loved getting her hair done and having manicures.

Palma was 87 years old when she took a turn for the worse in July 2018. She started having trouble with the small chores that used to keep her busy. She would doze off and wake up confused. Her oxygen levels started to drop dangerously low. She was admitted to the Hospital several times. By then, she had moved in with her daughter Jacqueline in Maple, and despite the distance, the family insisted on making the trip to Humber River Hospital – Palma’s hospital.

Palma and her children

Palma and her children

“I can’t say enough about each and every staff member on the eighth floor,” says Jacqueline. “They remembered our family. They were so compassionate and kind.”

In November, Palma was at home when she suddenly fell out of her chair. Her family tried to help her get comfortable but she was in too much pain. Jacqueline called an ambulance and begged them to take Palma to Humber River Hospital.

That night, Palma went into a quiet sleep and passed away the next day at 88 years old.

Palma’s children chose to ask friends and family to donate to Humber River Hospital Foundation in memory of her, just as the family had done for her late husband Rocco years before.

Palma and grandchildren

Palma and grandchildren

“Humber River Hospital is a part of us,” says Jacqueline. “My mom would be so proud we did that for her.”

Tribute gifts are one of many ways families like Palma’s choose to honour and remember their loved ones. The community benefits from the enhanced care provided by staff and physicians at Humber River Hospital, and the family of the person memorialized benefits from the knowledge that their loved one’s life, achievements, and beliefs have made a difference to the health of their community. Upon receipt of tribute gifts, an e-card or printed card will be sent to the honouree’s next of kin to acknowledge your special gift. To make an In Memory donation, click here or contact Saneh Singh, Annual Development Coordinator, at or 416-242-1000 ext. 81517.

Thank you to Palma’s family for sharing their story, and for choosing to support Humber River Hospital Foundation.