$1.58 Million Bequest From Ohio Couple to Fund New Foundation Grant in 2019

The Foundation for Physical Therapy Research will offer a three-year research grant of up to $360,000 thanks to the generosity of Hungarian-born couple Magdalen and Emil Goergeny.

Magdalen and Emil Goergeny’s contribution to the profession crossed continents. The circumstances of their shared lives led them to start over in a new part of the globe with a new language three times. In 2015, the Foundation learned that the couple left a generous gift to the physical therapy profession in their estate plans. The Goergeny’s bequest is one of the largest planned gifts ever received by the Foundation for Physical Therapy Research. This year, it will be used to make the physical therapy profession stronger through research.

Both Emil and Magdalen were born in Hungary. Emil was injured and lost sight in both eyes during mandatory service in the Hungarian Army. After the war, the couple relocated to Austria where Emil endured more than 50 surgeries. The Goergenys were denied reentry into Hungary and moved to Norway. Magdalaen graduated from the Oslo Physio-Therapeutical Institute in 1954.

The couple started over once again when they immigrated to the United States and became citizens in 1960. Magdalen received her US physical therapy training and established a practice in 1971. The couple eventually found a home in Akron, Ohio. Magdalen’s practice focus was orthopedics. At the time of her death she was a Life Member of the American Physical Therapy Association. Emil and Magdalen passed away a few months apart in 2013.

With this $1.58 million gift, the Goergenys became posthumous members of the Foundation’s Legacy Society. Thanks to the generosity of their bequest, the Foundation is accepting applications for a new named grant this year. The Goergeny Research Grant will be available to any physical therapist investigator focusing on the role of physical therapy in the prevention of secondary health conditions, impairments of body structures and functions, activity limitations and/or participation restrictions.

“Though we were never able to meet the Goergenys and thank them personally, we are incredibly grateful to them,“ said Barbara Malm, Foundation CEO. “Many of our Legacy Society members cite a desire to give back to the physical therapy profession as the reason for including the Foundation in their estate plans. We believe that this altruism and passion for helping others is what motivated Emil and Magdelen Goergeny in making this gift.”

Funding applications for grants open on April 10. Visit foundation4pt.org/grants for more information about  this and other 2019 opportunities. To learn more about making a commitment to the future of the physical therapy profession by joining the Legacy Society, visit legacyfpt.org or contact us at 800/875-1378 today.


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