The Yarmouth Hospital Foundation has announced a major contribution of more than
$200,000 by Doug and Elaine Thistle to the Foundation.
When the Thistles retired two years ago and sold their business, Thistle Hyundai, and
its associated property in Dayton, the couple decided to make a major charitable
donation to give back to the community that has supported and sustained them for
“When you look at an institution in this area that affects everybody, then there is
nothing that has the impact of the Yarmouth Regional Hospital,” Doug Thistle says.
“Everybody in the area is affected by the hospital and the services it provides. A gift to
the hospital is a benefit to the community as a whole.”
Doug, raised in a tiny village in Newfoundland, met Elaine when she was teaching in
Labrador. They came to Yarmouth to raise their children, and were welcomed by the
community where, over the years, he did business from Bear River to Shelburne. “The
Yarmouth hospital serves the same people who supported us all those years,” Doug
“The urge to give back is an innate quality,” says Elaine, who ran the business side of
her husband’s successful automobile dealership. “You decide to give back because
that’s the way you were raised.”
Indeed, their gift is made in honour of Elaine’s parents, Walton and Josina Warner of
Yarmouth, who were killed in a car accident in 1970. A name plate has been added as a
testament to their contribution to the Wall of Honour located in the hospital’s lobby.
“It’s to remember all the gifts they gave to the community,” she says. Elaine also sits
on the Board of Directors of the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation and is a member of both
the HR and Finance committees of the YHF.
“When the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation embarked on the Enhancing Health Care
campaign in early 2014 to fund a new CT scanner and Medication Management
System, little did we know that one of our board directors was quietly making plans for a
very generous donation in support of the foundation,” says Board Chair Shirley
The Thistles directed their contribution toward the Future Fund, which aims to provide
significant capital resources at times of critical need. It serves as a supplement or
backup to the annual fundraising campaign which finances specific equipment and
program goals. The Future Fund helps the Foundation prepare for future equipment
They chose to donate a substantial number of high-yield shares valued at $205,000,
which offers additional tax benefits to both the donors and the Foundation.
“Elaine Thistle joined the board in 2010 and quickly embraced the Foundation’s work
and vision,” d’Entremont says. “The Thistles have been strong community supporters for
many causes, including the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation. Elaine and Doug Thistle
give new meaning to the term ‘ambassadors’ of the YHF. Their substantial gift in support
of the Foundation is just one example of the work that Elaine and Doug do for our
“On behalf of the YHF and its board of directors we are honoured to have Elaine
Thistle as part of the board of directors and so grateful for the very generous donation.”
The Thistles are very modest about their substantial gift to the hospital: “If $100 is all
you can afford to give, that’s just as important as me giving $200,000,” Doug says.
“It’s in the giving of the gift,” Elaine adds. “You get the warm fuzzies from it. You do it
with a warm heart, rather than a cold hand.”
The Yarmouth Regional Hospital serves Digby, Shelburne and Yarmouth Counties.
For more information on the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation, go to the website: