Edmund Resch was the eldest son of Edmund Resch Snr, the German-born Anglican brewer and founder of the Resch brewing company. Resch Snr lived in great style in Swifts, a Gothic mansion at Darling Point. Despite being a well-known figure in Sydney and a generous contributor to Australia’s war effort, Resch was German-born.
In 1917, aged 70 years, he was arrested and interned as an enemy alien. Society shunned the family. However, Sister Mary Loyola had nursed Resch Snr at St Vincent’s Private Hospital and continued to visit and care for the Resches family in their time of need.
After his death, Sister Loyola continued her support of the family. Edmund Resch Jnr was Lutheran, and his wife Catholic. Sister Loyola nursed Mrs Resch through her final illness, and showed Edmund care and compassion nursing him as he grew lonely and isolated during increasingly frequent stays at St Vincent’s Private Hospital.
Resch Junior died in his home in 1963. He bequeathed two thirds of the income from his £6.5 million estate to St Vincent’s Private Hospital for 200 years, in appreciation of the “splendid services given by Sister Mary Loyola of St Vincent’s Private Hospital to my late father, my late wife and myself.”
In this way, he echoed the wishes of his late father, who had bequeathed his Estate to St Vincent’s in the event that his two sons predeceased him.
The Resch bequest was a transformational gift that led to the Sisters of Charity committing to rebuilding the private hospital to reflect the best modern hospitals in Europe and America.
The gift enabled the Sisters to borrow $10 million to fund the project, and use the bequest to pay the interest on the loan. Construction began in 1974, and was opened on 31st March 1976.
More than half a century later, Edmund Resch continues to provide for St Vincent’s Private Hospital Sydney ensuring its place as the preeminent private hospital in the Southern Hemisphere.