Our story began in 1957

at the Nebraska Lions State Convention when the Bellevue Nebraska Lions Club proposed founding an Eye Tissue Bank. The Lions of Nebraska voted unanimously in favor of the project.

Across the state, Lions increased the number of eye tissue donors by providing donation cards and organizing donor drives. Recovery kits were assembled and distributed across the state. In 1960, the Lions Eye Bank of Nebraska became established at the University of Nebraska College of Medicine.

In this photo: The Dedication of the Eye Bank in 1962. From left: Mrs. Vincent Hascall, Dr. JP Tollman, Dean of College of Medicine and Dr. Ben Kutler, chairman of The Lions Eye Bank program

In 1961, the organization needed room to expand.

The Lions committed to donate funds to the University annually for five years so that a room on campus could be repurposed. This space was named The Nebraska Lions Vincent C. Hascall Memorial Eye Bank in honor of Nebraska’s first Lions International President.

“Stub” Hascall was beloved not only in the Lions community, but throughout Nebraska for his work with the University of Nebraska, the Red Cross and the Boy Scouts of America.

Honoring Nebraska Lions Clubs

In 1969, the Lions of Nebraska accepted the responsibility and challenge of raising $250,000 to construct a facility that would have space for patient care, student instruction, research and a new home for the Eye Bank.

Lions clubs across the state participated in fundraising activities to meet this goal. On February 16, 1974, ground was broken for the facility. On May 10, 1975, the Lions presented the key to the new building.