Hospital Valets Donate $1,500 in Tips to WVU Cancer Center

Employees of West Virginia University Hospitals Valet Services are giving back more than keys to the patients they serve at the Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center.  The valets will turn over the $1,500 in tips they have received since April to the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center Clinic. 

“It’s our way of giving back to the patients we serve,” Jodie Jones, a valet, said.  “None of us are here for the tips.”

 Tom Strakal, WVU Hospitals’ valet, assists a Health Sciences visitor to her car.

In fact, a sign posted at the valet station clearly states ‘no tips required,’ but that does not stop satisfied patients and visitors from tipping the staff.

“I’m very proud to have such a caring staff,” Dan Harris, parking manager for WVU Hospitals Security, said.  “The money they’ve received is a testament to the quality of their work; the donation they’re making speaks highly of their generosity.”

Valet Services parks approximately 200 vehicles a day for visitors of the MBRCC, Betty Puskar Breast Care Center, Family Medicine Clinic, WVU Dental Clinic and Student Health.  Most vehicles belong to cancer patients.  In addition to their parking duties, the valets help patients get in and out of vehicles and wheelchairs.

“I like helping people,” says Tom Strakal.  “They really appreciate the service we provide.  Often they will bring us homemade cookies, doughnuts and pizza.  We also get greeting cards and letters thanking us for being so helpful.”

“I thank the valets for their wonderful donation and positive impact they have in the overall care of our patients,” said Deborah Falconi, director of Oncology Services.  “The valets are the first people patients interface with.  They are an important part of the WVU team that’s working to help patients feel better.”

“Patients have enough to worry about without worrying about parking,” Jones, who is also a former cancer patient, said.  “I know what they’re going through and I am happy to do or say anything to help brighten their day.”  

A check presentation is set for Wednesday, July 18, at 8 a.m. in the MBRCC Clinic lobby.  For more information on the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center visit www.hsc.wvu.edu/mbrcc/.

 WVU Hospitals’ valets, like Tom Strakal and Jodi Jones, will donate their combined $1,500 in tips to the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center.

- WVU -

For more information:
Amy Johns, HSC News Service, (304) 293-7087
sls: 07-16-07

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