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A Legacy of Nutrition and Style

A Legacy of Nutrition and Style
Russel and Tina Thomsen

By Rathyna Krumme

Tina Thomsen is passionate about healthy living! Her story began in her childhood where she remembers her mother giving her a glass of water with lemon to get her "juices" flowing. Her mother was always one to seek and learn ways to maintain good health and, through her influence, Tina discovered the value of the Adventist health message and the importance of Biblical health principles.

In the Fall of 1964, Tina met Russel Thomsen, a medical student at Loma Linda University. They were married ten months later and Tina supported him through his years of schooling. They were married nearly 55 years. Upon graduation, Russel chose to pursue a career as an obstetrician-gynecologist and served in the United States Army for 27 years delivering many babies around the world. After his retirement in 1994, Russel enlarged his intrauterine collection which he donated to Loma Linda University in 2014.

Russel passed away in July 2020. Soon after, Tina was listening to a Christian legal representative speak about wills, trusts, and legacies. Although she and Russel had not formally decided to leave a legacy gift during his lifetime, she thought it would be beneficial to leave her children a legacy of giving. This idea prompted changes to her estate plan. Working with her attorney, Tina designed a plan that benefitted four of her favorite charities, including Loma Linda University.

After many years of maintaining good health through natural means, the Department of Preventive Medicine's focus on healthier lifestyles through nutrition struck a chord with Tina. When learning of Tina's passion, Dr. April Wilson, Chair of the Department of Preventive Medicine, met with her to share plans to help improve lifestyle and nutritional education for students and residents.

After her conversation with Dr. Wilson, Tina's enthusiasm grew, resulting in the decision to leave a bequest for the Department of Preventive Medicine in her estate plans. Tina shared, "I just love supporting something like Preventive Medicine, especially with what our country has been going through… with Covid-19, I believe more people need to know they can maintain good health naturally. That's a real passion of mine."

Wanting to make a contribution while she was still living, Tina made an outright gift to help kick-start the lifestyle program Dr. Wilson presented to her. She plans to support the department on a regular basis. Her passion for helping others to learn to live more healthily is why she decided to leave a legacy gift to the Department of Preventive Medicine.

"A big part of living a life of Christ is to regard our bodies as His temples and to remember in order for us to truly understand God's word and how to live it out, we need to have healthy bodies. If our bodies are broken down, we don't have the wherewithal to not only understand what God's mission is for us individually, but how to pass that onto others and how to be a healthy model for others to follow. God gave us everything we need to be healthy. That is a big part of what I would like to pass on. I am so thankful to God for His provisions to do that," Tina explained.

Dr. Wilson agrees with Tina's holistic approach to lifestyle and nutrition. Dr. Wilson shared, "Tina Thomsen's gift was a blessing and initiated a team effort. She understands our vision to help address the root cause of disease through lifestyle medicine. We are building an intensive lifestyle change program for Loma Linda University Health and these funds will help us to grow and reach a sustainable place much more quickly than if we had to rely on volunteer time and effort alone. We're passionate about this work, and it can be hard to remain persistent when the resources are not adequate. Tina's gift was truly an answer to prayer as we trusted that God would bring us support at just the right time, when it was truly needed."

Tina concluded, "If you're always seeking, you never stop learning. I feel like I will continue to learn until the day I die. And those who are into Nutritional Medicine are always learning, they are always teaching, and always sharing what they have learned."

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To learn more about how to leave a legacy that aligns with your lifelong passion, please contact the Office of Planned Giving at 909-558-5375 or legacy@llu.edu.


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