It was just a small story, and perhaps you didn’t read it.
And the amount wasn’t a gigantic figure in today’s world, but it certainly was quite substantial to the organization receiving it.
We’re talking about the $730,000 gift left to Fairmont State University by William Claude “Bill” Waters, who passed away in July 2012 at the age of 93. The gift was left to Fairmont State through a bequest from Waters’ estate.
University officials were certainly thrilled with the gift.
“Mr. Waters’ gift is a very thoughtful expression of support and will have an enormous impact on campus,” said William B. Armistead, president of the Fairmont State Foundation Inc. He explained that “naming Fairmont State as a beneficiary in a will, life insurance policy or retirement plan builds long-term financial strength and allows a donor to create a meaningful legacy for future generations of Fairmont State students.”
The man who presented this most generous gift had a rather amazing story. He was a graduate of Clay-Battelle High School, located in Blacksville. He then served his country as a U.S. Army Air Corps paratrooper in World War II. He returned to Fairmont State and graduated from the local college in 1946 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in elementary education.
Mr. Waters went on to earn his master’s degree from West Virginia University and was employed by the Monongalia County Board of Education. He worked his way up the educational ladder and eventually became assistant superintendent of schools.
But he wasn’t through with work when he retired from that position. He wound up his career with the Merrill Publishing Co. as a textbook salesman and continued in that position until he retired once again — this time on a permanent basis.
And years prior to this generous donation, he had presented his alma mater with a gift of $63,000.
His cousin, Arden Fisher of Fairmont, described him well.
“He took care of himself and his family. He maintained contact with his roots throughout his life. He was generous and humble. He never directly said so, but I’m sure that his focus and purpose was providing opportunity through education,” Fisher said.
“As a Fairmont State alumna, I know firsthand the life-changing power of education. The university is grateful for Mr. Waters’ support during his lifetime and for this generous bequest. His forward-thinking will enrich the lives of many future students,” said FSU’s president, Dr. Maria Rose.
Another recent gift, this one from a Fairmont State University alumna and former employee, also shows the impact that’s possible through planned giving.
A bequest from the Mary K. Kaiser and John P. Kaiser Family Trust will provide more than $330,000 to the Fairmont State Foundation Inc. that will be used for FSU student scholarships.
A Fairmont native, Mary graduated from East Fairmont High School in 1946 and from Fairmont State in 1950. She was a bookkeeper and secretary to the registrar at Fairmont State from 1947-50.
Such gifts are not only very much appreciated by Fairmont State University, they are very much needed as well, and Bill Waters and Mary Kaiser must have been fully aware of this fact.
It was just a small story, and perhaps you didn’t read it.
Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives
It takes up to 100 units of blood to save the life of someone who sustains life-threatening injuries in a vehicle accident.
We’re hoping that the number of people who come to Fairmont Senior High School on Friday for and American Red Cross blood drive will exceed that amount.
Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely
The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.
- Too many taking too few steps to protect selves from skin cancer
Distracted driving: It isn’t worth fine or a life
Today marks the day that police agencies from six states are joining forces to crack down on one thing — distracted driving.
And they will focus on that traffic violation for a solid week, with the stepped-up effort to curb distracted driving wrapping up on Saturday, July 26.
COLUMN: Are we people watchers or people judgers?
Let me tell you about my little friend Robby. Well, actually, it’s more about his family and especially his mom. I didn’t get her name. I heard Robby’s name quite a bit, though, during a trip home from Birmingham, Alabama.
I noticed the family in the Birmingham airport immediately. They were just the kind of family you’d notice.
Relish the rich bounty of state’s diverse, unique food traditions
This week, a group of federal officials on a three-day culinary tour of the state visited the Greenbrier Valley to find out what most of us here already know — we have a rich food tradition in West Virginia.
The group was made up of officials from the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Soup Opera in need of your support again this time of year
It’s happening again.
It usually always happens about this time each year. Sometimes it’s a little earlier and sometimes a little later.
But Soup Opera executive director Shelia Tennant knows it will come — usually in July. And she’s never that surprised about it.
County honors men who gave all in helping their community
The next time you’re driving in the Rivesville area, you might notice new signs on two of the area’s bridges.
Those signs, which bear the names of Alex Angelino and Denzil O. Lockard, were unveiled Saturday in honor of the men whose names they display, two men who died while serving their communities.
The bridge on U.S. 19 over Paw Paw Creek was named to honor Lockard, while the bridge on U.S. 19 over Pharaoh Run Creek was named to honor Angelino. Lockard, a former Rivesville police chief, died in 1958 at the age of 48 while directing traffic. Angelino, a Rivesville firefighter, died at the age of 43 of a heart attack while fighting a fire in 1966.
State must learn to keep costs down and perform more efficiently on less
The West Virginia state government began its budget year last Tuesday with a small surplus of $40 million — less than 1 percent of its annual tax revenues — thanks only to dipping into its savings.
Let’s not do that again.
Long-range vision with transportation has been made to be thing of proud past
Last week’s closure of Fairmont’s Fourth Street Bridge is a symbol of a problem that must be fixed.
The United States should be proud of the vision its leaders once displayed to address the country’s transportation needs.
Back in 1954, for example, President Dwight D. Eisenhower announced his goal of an interstate highway system — something that transformed the country.
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- Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives