A Tribute to Sally Buckwalter from Schreiber President James DeBord

I was saddened last week to learn of the passing of a wonderful friend of Schreiber Mrs. Sally Buckwalter. If ever there was a person who personified kindness, generosity and a deep sense of human decency, actively demonstrated to others throughout her life it was Sally Buckwalter.

In my 12 years here at Schreiber there is a list of people who have helped bring transformational change to this amazing place and Sally’s name is near the very top of that list. As an active engaged philanthropist with a full schedule connecting her to many amazing non-profit causes in our community Sally was never too busy to take the time to come visit Schreiber and let us share with her our latest vision or plans. From the building of a dedicated Infant Care Room, allowing us to provide childcare services to children as young as six weeks old to building a new, higher portico that would no longer be damaged by regular strikes from transport busses or delivery trucks, regularly putting our main entryway out of commission, Sally quietly came forward to make it possible. She never wanted recognition for her efforts, just the satisfaction of knowing things would be made better for the thousands of children and their families who we serve.

More recently, while still battling the challenges caused by COVID in early 2021, I had a long phone call with Sally telling her of the need to create more therapy space for our growing number of staff and the increased numbers of children they would need to see again in person once the pandemic restrictions were eased. Without hesitation Sally’s reply was to say, “Please just let me know what you need and we’ll help get this project going.” It was a classic Sally moment where she didn’t ask for elaborate details or create a lot of hoops to jump through, she quite simply just always helped to get things done. She remarked to me one time, “I see all the good that is done here at Schreiber, so if I can help build on that then I’m happy to be a part.” As a result of her very early support, Schreiber is in the process of completing the largest expansion and renovation in our nearly 90 year history. This project stands as a testament to Sally and her caring for others.

For all the kindness and generosity she showed to so many and the lives she helped to change for the better now and long into the future, I along with everyone here at Schreiber will remain eternally grateful for the wonderful life of Sally Buckwalter. We hope that these words will serve as a comfort to her family and friends as they recall her truly amazing life.

– James DeBord

As a nationally recognized pediatric facility, the Schreiber Center for Pediatric Development provides family-centered education and therapy programs for infants, children and adolescents with disabilities, developmental delays, and acquired injuries. Our goal-oriented approach maximizes each child’s ability to function independently within the community.

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