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Cancer Center Celebrating 20-Years of Caring

On July 2, 1990, MeritCare Roger Maris Cancer Center opened in Fargo N.D. as a tribute to baseball great Roger Maris, who died of cancer. Now, 20-years later, the center continues to improve the lives of cancer patients throughout the region.

Contact: MeritCare Media Relations (701) 234-2000 or (800) 437-4010, ask for media pager #1715

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Fargo, ND) – On July 2, 1990, MeritCare Roger Maris Cancer Center opened in Fargo N.D. as a tribute to baseball great Roger Maris, who died of cancer. Now, 20-years later, the center continues to improve the lives of cancer patients throughout the region.

The center was funded completely through generous donations of the community; $5.5 million was raised through the capital campaign. The largest gift of $500,000 was given anonymously in honor of a "father and husband fulfilling his desire to support the cancer center…in recognition of the quality care and attention he received from nurses, physicians and others at St. Luke's (now MeritCare)."

While the types of cancer are vast, more and more people are surviving and going on to live full, active lives. "Roger Maris has become well-known as the place to be cared for because of the treatment success rates and quality care, including a 'Top 50 in the Nation' honor from U.S. News and World Report magazine," says Dennis Millirons, president, MeritCare Medical Center. "Roger Maris has really become a model for treating the whole person: body, mind and spirit. We couldn't be prouder of what they do for the people we serve."

In celebration of the past 20 years of care, one of the first patients of the center will be reunited with his physician and nurse today, Monday, July 12. Carl Sad of Cooperstown, N.D. will reunite with his oncologist, Dr. Louis Geeraerts and his nurse, Claudia Axvig at 12:30 p.m. 20 years ago Carl was diagnosed with testicular cancer on his 18th birthday - something he says impacted his entire life. He continues to live cancer free today, thanks to the doctors and staff at MeritCare Roger Maris Cancer Center.

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