Hélène Caillé Bossé’s story is intertwined with the CHUM’s history. As a young girl, she had her tonsils removed by Dr. Blain at Hôpital Notre-Dame, where she stayed several other times over the years, including a stay for jaundice. At that time, Hôpital Notre-Dame was the premier French-language secular hospital in Montréal and already a leader in healthcare.
A few years later, Hélène began her career working for a well-respected airline. She travelled the world before landing a job in marketing and advertising. In the meantime, she married Dr. Jean-Paul Bossé, then director of the plastic surgery department at Hôpital Notre-Dame.
She remembers him with admiration:
Over the years, she also visited Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal, one of the top hospitals in North America, where her grandfather was treated, and Hôpital Saint-Luc where she herself was treated for a severe inflammatory disease.
Alongside her husband, she was very involved in organizing a fundraiser at the Hôtel Méridien in Montréal in 1981 that raised over $40,000 to buy a microscope. Immersed in the medical world, Hélène developed a strong belief in philanthropy and understood early on how important donations are to supporting healthcare professionals and hospitals.
In 1996, Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal, Hôpital Notre-Dame and Hôpital Saint-Luc merged to become the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM). Two years later, the CHUM Foundation was launched.
After her husband passed away at Hôpital Notre-Dame in 2014 following several stints in the hospital, Hélène decided to write the CHUM Foundation into her will.
The CHUM continues to be part of Hélène’s story, as she visits Dr. Coutu and Dr. Reeves at the CHUM regularly to monitor her cardiac health.
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