Charitable Gift Annuity from lifelong Red Sox fan helps strike out cancer

Marilyn (Matthes) Silva

Marilyn (Matthes) Silva

As a child growing up in Massachusetts, Marilyn (Matthes) Silva developed a love for the Boston Red Sox after learning about baseball from her father. Listening to Sox games on the radio and visiting Fenway Park with her dad are cherished memories for Silva, who is still an ardent Sox fan.

"I went to my first game at Fenway with my dad when I was 12," she said. "I remember the walk from underneath the grandstand and up the ramp, and then seeing the whole park suddenly spread out before me."

The Red Sox have not only been a source of entertainment for Marilyn, but also one of inspiration: the team's partnership with Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund for the last 60 years led her to establish a Charitable Gift Annuity (CGA) to benefit Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund's ultimate mission to end cancer.

"The CGA for the Jimmy Fund made so much sense," she said.

Marilyn's CGA was created with a one-time gift to Dana-Farber. In return, she receives a steady income at a fixed rate for her lifetime.

"It is pleasant to receive a little extra income and know that, at the same time, a patient is being helped," Marilyn said.

As a lung cancer survivor, Marilyn wanted to help cancer patients, especially children, and the connection between the Jimmy Fund and the Red Sox was an incentive to establish the CGA.

In addition to her childhood memories of the Sox, Silva also relishes the night of July 24, 2004. As the Sox battled their archrivals, the New York Yankees, competition between the teams fueled a contentious game. The Sox, rallied by the leadership of catcher Jason Varitek, earned an 11-10 comeback win during a season that would culminate in the Sox's first World Series Championship in 86 years. That exciting July night was also Silva's 75th birthday!

Through wins and losses, her support of the Red Sox remains steadfast—just like her support of Dana-Farber and the Jimmy Fund.

"It's important for people to remember that when the Sox have a bad season, we can always say, ‘Wait ‘til next year,'" said Marilyn. "For a child with cancer-without the support of the Jimmy Fund-next year might be too late."

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