B.M. Stanton… One Man’s Legacy

Photo of B.M. Stanton

In 1982, B.M. Stanton, a concerned and dedicated citizen of Virginia Beach, saw an immediate need to support the volunteer efforts of the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad. In an effort to raise awareness and support for this endeavor, he combined his business savvy and profound appreciation for the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad to form what would become known as the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad Foundation.

In a letter to interested parties, dated November 1, 1982, B.M. Stanton wrote:
All of us who have lived at the Beach for a number of years have had occasion to learn first hand, or thru family or friends, just what a marvelous service the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad performs for our community. Whether you have an auto accident, household accident, heart attack, or just any need for ambulance service and medical attention…the Rescue Squad is there within minutes, with medical knowledge, equipment and medical supplies, to give aid and comfort…

Rescue Squad volunteers are truly a generous, devoted group of people, dedicated to serving their fellowmen…I am so appreciative and grateful to these wonderful people for their humane service to the community…It is my hope that you, too, share my admiration and respect for the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad and that you will want to raise funds to endow the Squad, so it will have the necessary equipment and supplies, and to assure that the Rescue Squad will remain on a volunteer basis, the same as it has been since the Squad was organized in 1952.

After more than two decades, B.M. Stanton’s values and principles remain the driving force of this Foundation: to provide financial and civic support to the Virginia Beach Volunteer Rescue Squad through fundraising efforts and long-term development strategies, helping to assure the future of free pre-hospital emergency care provided by community volunteers within the City of Virginia Beach. The VBRS Foundation has no authority over the operations and administration of the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad. Members of the Foundation include anyone who contributes or who has contributed at least $1000 to the Foundation, or to the Capital Campaign, or is a life member of the Rescue Squad. Members shall not be entitled to vote.

The Foundation’s commitment extends to the entire volunteer rescue system of Virginia Beach, as exemplified by its financial support of system-wide marketing and public relations campaigns, as well as advocacy efforts. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization whose assets are based on individual and planned gifts from the Virginia Beach community. These gifts fulfill the Foundation’s goals of maintaining and increasing the endowment, which will help to secure the future sustainability of the City’s volunteer rescue squad system.

Currently the Foundation’s Board of Directors oversees more than $16 million in assets. These funds have been raised from the generosity of individual gifts and bequests and through the dedicated efforts of local Foundation volunteers.