Wings of Hope ~ Hands of Healing

2020_Wings of Hope - Hands of Healing, Kent Ullberg, Sculptor, Donated by Jack and Valerie Guenther Foundation, Dedicated 2019

Wings of Hope, Hands of Healing statue
“Wings of Hope – Hands of Healing” sculpture at the main entrance to the Mays Cancer Center complex.

We are deeply grateful to Valerie and Jack Guenther for their vision and generosity to commission the beautiful outdoor art sculpture “Wings of Hope – Hands of Healing” that is erected at the main entrance to the Mays Cancer Center complex. The sculpture is a towering and inspirational symbol of the dedication and mission of the Mays Cancer Center to decrease the burden of cancer in San Antonio, South Texas and beyond.

This impressive work of art — which was designed and created by world-renowned wildlife artist and sculptor, Kent Ullberg — was donated by The Jack and Valerie Guenther Foundation to offer a visual representation of hope and healing for patients and families as they enter the cancer center.

Jack Guenther said the idea for the sculpture came to him and his wife, Valerie, several years earlier during a discussion with the former director of the cancer center. Jack stated, “We thought an institution of this magnitude should have a publicly viewable sculpture representing its mission that would serve as an inspiration to our patients, families, and health care professionals.”

Dr. Ruben Mesa, executive director of the Mays Cancer Center, with Kent Ullberg, world-renowned artist and sculptor of “Wings of Hope – Hands of Healing.”

The artist, Kent Ullberg said, “We wanted to honor all cancer patients and the medical profession with the five-foot ‘Healing Hands’ in bronze, out of which emerges the 15-foot sparkling ‘Wings of Hope’ in polished stainless steel that forms a ‘V’ for victory over cancer.”

Dr. Ruben Mesa, executive director of the Mays Cancer Center, shared, “Our patients love the beauty, serenity and symbolism of this masterpiece. We often witness patients and their loved ones taking photos in front of the sculpture. The artwork is a true inspiration of the hope and healing that it represents.”

Jack and Valerie Guenther have been longstanding key supporters and major gift donors of the cancer center since it was founded in 1974. In fact, Mr. Guenther was the attorney who drafted the articles of incorporation for the cancer center and the Urschel Tower is named in honor of Mrs. Guenther’s parents, Charles and Betty Urschel.

(Back row from left) Abigail Guenther Kampmann, Dr. William Henrich, Jack Guenther, (front row from left) Lindsay Guenther, Valerie Guenther and Mary Henrich visit after the dedication of the sculpture.

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In the 2020 issue of Mays Cancer Center Annual Report

What does the cancer journey look like? One depiction is a mosaic — a composite of the thousands of patients, family members and friends, caregivers, physicians, providers and researchers who have joined the battle to end cancer so that every cancer journey can become a survivor story. At the Mays Cancer Center, we strive every day to find new therapies, to increase the diversity of participants in our clinical trials and to expand rehabilitation opportunities to more patients, because we know that every cancer journey gives us all a reason to fight.

View the 2020 issue

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