Memories and everything else, Mr. Hillman
Thanks for the
Regarding Henry Hillman (“Billionaire Financier Avoided Spotlight But Was One of the City’s Most Generous Benefactors,” April 15 news obituary):
For almost 30 years, my dad has worked for The Hillman Company. When I was growing up, the annual company picnic took place at Seven Springs, which included games, crafts, minigolf and alpine slide vouchers, and a celebratory banquet. My brothers and I anxiously awaited dinner’s end, as every child of every employee received a gift. To my knowledge, Henry Hillman was never there, but I left every year wondering who this mysterious Mr. Hillman was, amazed by his generosity. To him, I owe so many happy family memories.
This is just a small example of who Henry Hillman was and always will be to Pittsburgh. From the Hillman Cancer Center, Hillman Library, the Center for Future-Generation Technologies and the rink at PPG Place to countless donations around the city for the benefit of its people, he has contributed to our lives without knowing us or us knowing him. For these gifts, our city shall be eternally grateful.
As kids, we curiously asked how much money Mr. Hillman had. My dad, a loyal, type-A accountant, never told. Mr. Hillman was described as a no-showing-off kind of guy. In the last few years I realized Mr. Hillman’s personal impact, as my dad’s tone regarding Mr. Hillman changed from respect and appreciation to include friendship and admiration.
We often heard stories of how Mr. Hillman, in his 90s, still worked the treadmill, poked fun at himself and maintained a pragmatic approach to life. Mr. Hillman didn’t treat my dad like a worker; he treated him like family. Mr. Hillman will forever be a role model to him due to his enthusiastic character and tireless resolution. My dad will always be proud to be a part of the organization Mr. Hillman created.
Thank you, Mr. Hillman, for being a mentor and friend to my dad. Thank you for making my city what it is today: a place to raise children and a place to visit, rich in culture, medicine and technology. Thank you, Mr. Hillman, for being you. JULIE JACKSON