David Carley

Life Insurance Gift Supports Work of U.Va. Gerontologist

In life, David Carley was a force of nature, always working for positive change. Before his passing in May 2009 from liver cancer, the real estate developer and businessman made arrangements to continue his good works through a bequest. A portion of the proceeds from a fully paid life insurance policy, purchased for him by Alliant Energy while he served on the public utility’s board of directors, will further the work of Dr. Mark E. Williams in the University of Virginia’s Department of General Medicine.

“David thought it was important for Mark to have all the resources that could possibly be available to him to continue his work,” said Claire Gargalli, Carley’s widow.

Williams, the Ward K. Ensminger Distinguished Professor in Geriatric Medicine since 2001, is a nationally recognized expert in the field of geriatrics and palliative care. He became Carley’s primary care physician shortly after Carley and his wife relocated to Charlottesville from Philadelphia in search of “one last big adventure” in 2001. Carley was impressed with Williams’ clinical skills, his enthusiasm and his desire to train future physicians. As time passed, the men’s relationship deepened into one of mutual friendship.

Managing the health of older people is typically complicated. As Carley’s own health issues became more complex, Williams’ abilities and commitment became even more apparent. He coordinated Carley’s care among the various specialists, and, when the time came, arranged for hospice care.

“We knew he was a great clinician, but until David was really sick, we didn’t know how great he was,” said Gargalli. “It was a real comfort to know that somebody was thinking more about us and not the disease.”