Dr. William J. and Dr. Charles H. Mayo took the legacy that their father, Dr. William Worrall Mayo, started and transformed Mayo Clinic into a health, research and education center known around the world.
The brothers donated their property to create what is today Mayo Foundation, leaving much of their personal savings and the clinic's assets to a perpetual nonprofit, they wrote, "the success of the Clinic, past, present and future, must be measured by its contributions to the general good of humanity."
Thus, Mayo's sesquicentennial exhibit, currently on display in Rochester's Peace Plaza, is titled "Mayo Clinic: 150 Years of Serving Humanity."
During the Depression, the Mayos often ignored how long it took patients to pay their medical bills. Some patients found the surprise words "paid in full" handwritten across their bills by one of the brothers.
Years later, as the country's financial strength returned, grateful patients eventually repaid the kindness of the Mayo brothers by taking care of missed payments — and by becoming Mayo Clinic benefactors.
This article originally appeared in the Post-Bulletin. Click here to read the full article.