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Hometown heart: Longtime Marshfield Clinic supporter leaves $500k legacy gift to heart research

​​​​​​​February 24, 2017

A vision for the future, a love of her home community and a huge heart inspired the late Patricia (Schreiner) Naegele to gift $525,000 from her estate to heart research at Marshfield Clinic. Naegele, who passed away July 25, 2015, was a dedicated supporter of research along with her husband, the late Robert Naegele, since 1987.

The Robert and Patricia Schreiner Naegele Endowment for Heart Research will fund continued research in heart health by Marshfield Clinic clinicians and scientists.

"Patricia and Robert's commitment to philanthropy throughout their lives is inspiring," said Teri Wilczek, chief philanthropy officer at Marshfield Clinic Health System Foundation. "Their vision for the future of accessible, compassionate care will help us advance heart research for years to come. Receiving this gift to benefit heart research during American Heart Month in February was especially meaningful."​

Naegele was born and raised in Marshfield, graduating in 1943 from Marshfield High School. She and her husband, Robert, met in Milwaukee and were married in Marshfield in 1946. After their marriage, they moved to Midland, Michigan, where they lived, worked, and were actively involved in the community until Robert passed away in August 2000. As dedicated philanthropists, the couple supported many causes throughout their lives.

Though Naegele did not spend her adult life in Marshfield, she never forgot the close-knit community she called home. Naegele's commitment to Marshfield and Marshfield Clinic remained strong, leading her and her husband to create an endowment to benefit heart research that was funded primarily through their estate.

"The Robert and Patricia Schreiner Naegele Endowment for Heart Research ensures that Bob and Pat's legacy will continue to support research at Marshfield Clinic," said Karen Piel, gift planning officer at MCHS Foundation. "Pat knew the importance of heart health in our Wisconsin communities, and she wanted to make a difference beyond her lifetime. Her remarkable generosity will make a significant impact on the future of research and patient care."

Fritz Wenzel, interim executive director, Marshfield Clinic Research Institute knew the Naegeles well and visited with them often.

"We are so pleased and grateful for the estate gift from Pat Naegele," Wenzel said. "This gift will go a long way to support heart research conducted here in Marshfield. As we move toward health services research, we are working on research areas that will translate to patient care as quickly as possible. The diseases that affect the heart are most certainly conditions where our emphasis lies. We thank all who made this gift possible."

In addition to her philanthropic commitment, Naegele played a key role for many years at Marshfield Clinic as a member of the Clinic's National Advisory Council from 1991-2013. The National Advisory Council served as consultants to Marshfield Clinic to enhance the Clinic's ability to provide high quality health care and to continue its leadership role in medical research and education, before the Marshfield Clinic Health System Board of Directors was created.

Robert and Patricia Naegele also were featured in MCHS Foundation's Legacy Book a collection of stories from Marshfield Clinic supporters celebrating Marshfield Clinic's 100th anniversary. In the book, Naegele shared, "I am one of the privileged to have been born and raised in Marshfield, and I did know the quality of life was better because of the special doctors and staff serving us at the Marshfield medical complex. Giving, doing what we can while we enjoy the fruits of what life has to offer means leaving benefits to those after we have gone."

To learn more about supporting research at Marshfield Clinic, contact MCHS Foundation at or 715-387-9249.


Marshfield Clinic Health System (MCHS) oversees Marshfield Clinic and other subsidiaries, including Security Health Plan of Wisconsin, Inc., MCIS, Inc., Marshfield Clinic Health System Foundation, Flambeau Hospital in Park Falls and Lakeview Medical Center in Rice Lake. Marshfield Clinic, with more than 50 locations in Wisconsin, serves patients through accessible, high quality health care, research and education; with more than 700 physician specialists in 86 specialties and subspecialties and more than 6,500 employees. MCHS is overseen by a Board of Directors with 13 independent members and 11 physicians who comprise the Marshfield Clinic Board.

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