Sanctuary One has received a bequest of more than a quarter of a million dollars from the estate of a New York surgeon.

Sanctuary One has received a bequest of more than a quarter of a million dollars from the estate of a New York surgeon.

The non-profit Applegate Valley care farm received the $260,000 bequest from the estate of Dr. Jeanne Pamilla. The gift is the largest bequest the Sanctuary has received to date, said Della Merrill, program manager for Sanctuary One at Double Oak Farm.

Merrill described the gift as an inspiration.

"The funds will go towards our greatest needs, which includes providing animal care, education programs for people and volunteers, our garden program, and general care of our facility," Merrill said.

The executor of Pamilla's estate, Kathryn Levine, is a local anesthesiology nurse in Ashland. Levine learned about Sanctuary One from her veterinarian.

"Upon hearing about us, she came out for a farm tour to learn more about what we do and to make sure that we were the right fit for Dr. Pamilla's estate," Merrill said.

Merrill said Levine told her Pamilla was "a true pioneer" who became an orthopedic surgeon at a time when there were few women in the field and at a young age.

Pamilla practiced at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, where she specialized in helping severely deformed children have more functional lives. Pamilla dedicated her career to developing new surgical procedures for children who required many surgeries over many years. She traveled the world teaching those skills, including to Russia and China when the countries were considered "enemies," Merrill said in a press release.

Pamilla also sponsored many young women financially so they could go into medical careers and gave generously to her church, community, disabled veterans and animal care organizations, Merrill said.

Sanctuary One operates a nonprofit care farm, in which volunteers work with animals and in gardening. The organization's directors say the activity provides mutual healing, with volunteers seeing improved mental and physical health and lonely people establishing therapeutic relationships.

"Dr. Pamilla's rule when giving was simple: give to those who turn a little into a lot, making Sanctuary One an obvious choice," Merrill said in the press release.

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Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or e-mail