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Legacy gift honors husband and medical pioneer

August 13, 2019
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In her final months of life, Aroxy Zacarian thought about what mattered most to her – four beautiful and accomplished children; nine wonderful grandchildren; one great-grandson; three siblings; and a dear husband of 51 years, Dr. Setrag A. Zacarian.

Aroxy had devoted her adult life to volunteerism, the arts, and the medical community. She also loved watching her husband’s career grow and thrive through the 41 years he practiced medicine in western Massachusetts.

Dr. Zacarian became a world-renowned pioneer in the study of cryosurgery, which involves the use of extreme cold to destroy abnormal tissues, such as tumors. He also brought the best in care to his patients and to the medical students he proudly taught.

When Dr. Zacarian passed away in 1998, his colleagues at New England Dermatology and Laser honored his memory and commitment to the advancement of medical knowledge by establishing an endowed fund at Baystate Health Foundation in his name. It meant a great deal to Aroxy knowing her husband’s legacy would be recognized for generations.

The Dr. Setrag Zacarian Memorial Endowed Lectureship brings experts in dermatology to Baystate Health to speak on best practices, new treatments, and exciting breakthroughs. As Aroxy and her children thought about her own legacy, one of her final acts of kindness was to include a gift in her estate plan to help the Zacarian endowment continue to grow and make a difference.

“Our region benefits from having highly trained and skilled physicians, who are current in the latest treatments and diagnostics and committed to teaching the next generation of doctors. Dr. Zacarian was clearly such a role model in his area of expertise,” notes Dr. Abraham Thomas, chair of medicine for Baystate Health.

“Endowed funds, such as the Zacarian Memorial Lectureship, help attract individuals to teach our local providers to remain at the leading edge of medicine. Thank you to the Zacarian family, the physicians at New England Dermatology and Laser Center, and community members for giving back to support this education,” said Dr. Thomas.

Learn more about how you can leave a legacy through gift and estate planning.