'His legacy will continue to live and thrive'
Edward “Ed” Pompeian, the longtime real estate developer and founder of the Gift of Life Transplant House, died unexpectedly Saturday morning at St. Marys Hospital. He was 67 years old.
Born in Michigan, Pompeian came to Rochester as a child for a life-saving kidney transplant at Mayo Clinic. As his obituary reads, “His mother gave him life twice, she was his organ donor.”
For the next four-plus decades, Pompeian would remain in Rochester — building not only a successful real estate business, but also a reputation for philanthropy. In 1984, he and his wife, Jayne, founded the Gift of Life Transplant House to provide a home-away-from-home for transplant patients and their caregivers. (The two met while Jayne was a nurse and Ed was visiting a transplant patient in the hospital.)
“From his own experience of sickness and healing, Ed understood the financial and emotional strain that transplantation places on organ recipients and donors; their families and caregivers,” his obituary reads. “He dreamed of creating a home away from home for other transplant patients to help relieve some of the stress and turmoil he had experienced first-hand.”
Pompeian is survived by his wife; four children, Edward, Aaron, Nick and Adrienne; and three grandchildren. Nick Pompeian is a co-owner of Realty Growth Incorporated, the firm founded by his late father.
A celebration of Ed Pompeian’s life will be held this Thursday in Rochester. A visitation is scheduled for the night before. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking memorials be made to the Gift of Life Transplant House or Ascension Lutheran Church in Rochester.
In a social media post on Monday, the Board of Directors of Gift of Life Transplant House described Pompeian’s life as a “remarkable example of the impact one individual can have on the world.”
“His vision, integrity, selflessness, and courage while experiencing two kidney transplants and many physical challenges will continue to inspire and transform lives. Although we have said goodbye to Ed in this life, his legacy will continue to live and thrive.”
Sean Baker is a Rochester journalist and the founder of Med City Beat.