Walk On Sunshine - May 18, 2014

"Like Steve Jobs, John Mann put a 'ding' in the Universe. His greatest joy was his wife and best friend, Bonnie and his two beautiful daughters.


Like his mother, Marylen, John dedicated his life to making the world better and, though, he left us much too soon, he left everything he touched better than he found it."

Rabbi Susan Talve

Central Reform Congregation


How many of our best and brightest must we lose before we can cure these dreaded brain tumors?  John D. Mann, like Suzy Esstman for whom Hadassah’s annual Walk On Sunshine is named, is yet another of those shining stars lost too soon –leaving a tremendous hole in the world which their extraordinary talents, commitment and drive might have filled in the years to come. 


John Mann was a individual who had time and again demonstrated both tremendous courage and extraordinary drive.  During his recovery from a near fatal brain injury at the age of 23, he not only recovered, but went on to earn an MBA, hold an executive marketing position with SBC, start an international manufacturing and importing company, revitalize a community center providing safe haven for thousands of St. Louis children and lead the effort to open the city’s first charter high school, the Lift For Life Academy, which dedicated the John D. Mann wing in his honor, and resulted in John receiving the “40 under 40” award from the St. Louis Business Journal in 1994 at the age of 28.


John has been described by many as a man with natural grace, elegance and class.  He was extremely bright and “as sweet as they come, something you don’t say about a guy”, said his childhood and lifelong friend Leland Wolff.


With so much still left to accomplish, John’s extraordinary gifts and light were extinguished in 2011 after being diagnosed at the age of 45 with an inoperable brain tumor.  He left behind a tremendous legacy of accomplishments, not the least of which are a loving wife Bonnie, two beautiful daughters, Julia and Abigail, his mother, Marylen, and a large number of loving relatives and friends.

Our Hadassah St. Louis Chapter is honored to have the John Mann family join us this year. We look forward to seeing all of you, on a beautiful spring day, to Walk on Sunshine!

Doctors at Hadassah are Conquering Brain Tumors at the Molecular Level

For Regina Golan-Gerstl, a postdoctoral fellow at the Hadassah-Hebrew University School of Medicine, the fight against brain cancer has been close-up and personal: her mother died of the disease. She has now identified a genetic protein that is directly implicated in the development of the most prevalent brain cancer--glioblastoma.

Click Here to Read the Story

Join us Sunday!
Walk-ins Welcome!!

Registration at 9:30am

Queeny Park
550 Weidman Rd, Ballwin, MO


Registration begins at 9:30am
Welcome and Walk at 10:00am

"Sunshine on a Cloudy Day"

Despite a slightly overcast sky, Queeny Park radiated with sunshine Sunday morning as Hadassah held its eighth annual “Walk on Sunshine” to benefit brain tumor research.

Families with dogs walked through the park, which was decorated with balloons; music played over a DJ’s speakers; donated items in bright bags were raffled and Ben & Jerry’s offered free ice cream to walkers who began their route at the playing of the song “Walking on Sunshine.” The atmosphere was fun and sunny, emulating the vision of Suzy Esstman, an active community member who planned the walk after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in 2004.

St. Louis Chapter Hadassah

12 Millstone Campus Drive

St. Louis, MO  63146



Hadassah intends to respect donors’ wishes regarding their gifts, however in accordance with U.S. tax law regarding deductibility of contributions, Hadassah shall have full dominion, control and discretion over all gifts.  A copy of Hadassah’s latest Financial Report is available by writing to the Hadassah Finance Dept., 50 W. 58thStreet, New York, NY 10019.


Founded in 1912, Hadassah is the largest women's membership organization in the United States. Hadassah has been given a four-star rating (highest rating possible) by Charity Navigator, and an ‘A’ rating from the American Institute of Philanthropy.  Hadassah was a 2005 Nobel Peace Prize nominee.

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