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We most often think of legacies as something left behind by those who have lived long, productive lives. Sometimes, though, legacies are created by some who are much too young.
Jeff Hayek was a happy 10-year old boy who loved baseball. Not only loved it but lived it as a pitcher and first baseman. He was a smiling, energetic competitor who strived for the big strikeout. And then tragedy struck. Jeff developed complications from a rare blood clot disorder and passed away.
Nicholas Jarvis was nine years old when his life ended unexpectedly from health complications. An easygoing and cheerful boy, he loved nature and the outdoors, animals of the land and in the sea, and science. He wrote about becoming a marine biologist or having a career in forestry or working with wildlife.
Dustin and Courtney Muse were siblings, ages 16 and 13, excelling in school, athletics, music and theatre. Dustin was known for his drive and determination in the sports he played, and Courtney loved dancing, acting, and playing the piano. Their young lives were cut short when they were involved in a car accident.
Nathan Farlow was described as “extraordinary” and “a person of boundless energy and commitment to excellence.” After graduating from college, he was hired by ExxonMobil and relocated to Houston, Texas. He married and was a new father when his life was taken by a drunk driver.
How did the families of Jeff, Nicholas, Dustin, Courtney, and Nathan turn their grief and loss into something that would help others?
Jeff’s family – his parents, Robin and Brian Hayek, and his siblings, Bailey and Evan, established The Jeffrey Hayek Memorial Fund to create and maintain a baseball field in the Urbana area that was greatly needed for youth. Their success in building “Jeffy’s Field” as a memorial to their son and brother captured not only his love of baseball but his love of life that he exhibited so well in his 10 short years.
Mary and Darren Jarvis, Nicholas’ parents, created The Nicolas B. Jarvis Memorial Scholarship Fund to help graduating seniors from Frederick, Urbana, and Tuscarora High Schools who want to study forestry, agriculture, veterinary medicine, marine biology, early childhood education, science, history, or sports medicine. Since 2004, more than 20 students have benefitted from Nicholas’ scholarship.
Dustin and Courtney’s parents, Pam Flickinger and Donald Muse, wanted to help other youth pursue interests that were similar to their children’s. Since 2007, grants from The Dustin and Courtney Muse Memorial Fund have provided college tuition, supported the Monocacy Middle School Chorus and athletic and theatre programs at Governor Thomas Johnson High School, helped faith-based youth groups, and provided athletic scholarships to participate in sports camps or music scholarships for private voice or instrumental lessons to more than 80 students.
The Farlow family – Nathan’s wife Jennifer, parents Arnold and Elizabeth, and siblings Catherine, Daniel, and Elizabeth Joy – also created a scholarship fund to create a legacy in Nathan’s name. Scholarship recipients of The Nathan W. Farlow Memorial Fund for Excellence are active in a faith-based organization and have demonstrated community volunteerism and leadership – all traits that exemplify how Nathan lived his life.
These families have turned tragedy into something positive. Through their loss, they have honored their children, ensured their legacies, and helped hundreds of others be better at doing the things they love to do. The Community Foundation is humbled to be part of helping these families honor their loved one’s lives.
As a community, we continue to hear about accidents and deaths related to drunk driving. It is especially sobering when you know people who have lost family or friends this way. When a person’s life is cut short, it’s incredibly difficult to find comfort or offer comfort to those left behind. Some people turn their grief into preventative action, so others never experience the same loss.
One example of loss turned into action is The Garrett R. Petronchak Memorial Fund. Garrett lost his life in an alcohol-related accident in 1995. A graduate of Walkersville High School, he was enrolled in his second year at Frederick Community College. His death sent his mother, Peggy Waxter, on a mission to educate others about the dangers of drinking and driving. Her first step was to establish a fund at the Community Foundation for scholarships to graduating high school seniors and grants to nonprofits. The scholarship criteria included that students must be involved in substance dependence prevention programs and grants would support programs relating to the enforcement of underage drinking laws. The fund provides a way to fundraise and accept contributions that are tax-deductible.
Mrs. Waxter decided to organize a community run to raise money for the fund, and The Garrett’s 5K Run was established in 1996. She, along with family and friends, worked tirelessly for ten years to organize the race, with as many as 600 runners participating. Mrs. Waxter also partnered with Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) for ten years to talk with high school students throughout the county about drinking and driving. Since 1998, more than 18 scholarships have been presented, totaling more than $35,000 in post-secondary educational support. Also, she shared her story by speaking at Frederick County Victim Impact Panels - a court-mandated requirement when a person was charged with DUI.
Since education is Mrs. Waxter’s focus, she recommends grants to Frederick Community College’s Police Science program to assist those studying law enforcement. Grants have provided books to police cadets enrolled in the program, to ensure they have the most up-to-date material available. GoPro cameras were purchased as additional training tools. In 2016 and 2017, grants to Frederick Community College Foundation supported the purchase of two Drunk Busters Pedal Karts and impairment goggles for the Police Science program. The Maryland State Police and Frederick City Police are using the Karts and goggles for community outreach to let people experience what it is like to drink under the influence and have reached hundreds in the community as a result. Additional grants from the fund in 2018 provided the Maryland State Police with three new Preliminary Breath Testers and other classroom equipment that demonstrates how alcohol affects the body and increases drunk driving risks.
How have these scholarships and grants impacted the community? Mrs. Waxter says she has created awareness of the devastation that impaired driving can cause. The FCPS high school students she spoke with were shocked when she described the horrendous car accident that took Garrett’s life. When presenting a scholarship in Garrett’s name to a student, she makes sure they know about the poor decision Garrett made to ride with an intoxicated driver, and that earning their college degree and being successful is important to her because Garrett would never finish college. She also says the grants have brought the message to a higher level, as the Drunk Buster Kart simulations have reached hundreds of people. “Knowledge is power, and the more information people have about driving under the influence will hopefully save lives,” said Mrs. Waxter.
How often do you meet people now who are born, raised, and live their entire lives in the same place? Frederick County is a place where this phenomenon is not uncommon, but increasingly unlikely as the years pass.
Meredith and Helen Young are two people who spent their entire lives here. In 2009, the year both passed away, they were well into their 90’s. Graduates of Frederick High School, Meredith was employed immediately following graduation by Fredericktown Bank and Trust (now PNC Bank) as a runner. He began learning many of the other bank positions, but his career was interrupted while he served in WWII as a Master Sergeant in the 146th Finance Section of the Army, experiencing both the European and Pacific theatres of war. Meredith returned to the bank following the war, and in 1957, became assistant vice-president. In January 1959, he became the youngest bank president in the City of Frederick, at the age of 46. He was active in the community, including Rotary Club of Frederick, where he became a Paul Harris Fellow; a charter member of the Frederick Jaycees; vice-chairman of the March of Dimes; a member of the board of trustees of Frederick Memorial Hospital; served on the Board of Associates at Hood College; a member of the A.F. & A. Masonic Lodge, receiving a 70-year Masonic pin; and a member of the Francis Scott Key American Legion Post 11. This list is slightly pared down due to limited space!
Helen Brown was hired by Fredericktown Bank and Trust after her graduation from Hood College in 1935. There she met Meredith, and they were married in October 1943. Helen’s bank career lasted 41 years until her retirement in 1978 as vice-president and trust officer. She was community-minded as well, as a life member of the Frederick Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, and a 40-year member of the board of directors for the G. Frank Thomas Foundation. Both Helen and Meredith were 65+ year members of Evangelical Lutheran Church.
The Youngs were generous with their time and resources and were described by a close friend as having spent much of their lifetime “quietly helping students acquire an education.” They were modest and didn’t want attention or publicity about their good deeds. They recognized the value of education and sought to ensure that studying at the post-secondary level was available.
Meredith was the second of the couple to pass away, and after his death, The W. Meredith S. Young and Helen B. Young Scholarship Fund was established through a bequest to the Community Foundation. Since 2012, more than $260,000 in scholarships have been provided to Frederick County students from the fund. The Youngs also made bequests to Rotary Club of Frederick and the Historical Society of Frederick County. Those organizations decided to create funds through the Community Foundation as a way of ensuring they could fulfill their goals. The Rotary Club of Frederick/W. Meredith S. Young and Helen B. Young Scholarship Fund was created, and since 2012 has provided more than $100,000 in scholarships to area students. The Historical Society created The Meredith and Helen Young Facilities Enhancement and Preservation Fund to support the maintenance and preservation of its buildings. Grants provided since 2012 exceed $125,000.
Meredith and Helen contributed immensely to the quality of life in Frederick County, both professionally and personally, during their lifetime. They continue to have great impact as scholarships will be provided annually, and the history of our county will continue to be preserved because of their foresight. They are a true example of For Good. Forever. For Frederick County.
FREDERICK, MD – January 4, 2018: Grants totaling more than $65,000 have been provided from five funds that were created specifically to benefit Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center, and Montevue Assisted Living. The funds are managed by The Community Foundation of Frederick County, and grants from the funds will be used for projects that improve the quality of life for residents at both facilities.
Grants from The Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center and Montevue Assisted Living Fund will provide two new upright pianos, and will support the addition of hand railings in the Memory Garden.
A grant from The Friends of Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center and Montevue Assisted Living Fund will support the addition of hand railings in the Memory Garden.
A grant from The Donald L. Lewis Staff Education Fund for Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center and Montevue Assisted Living Fund will assist with the cost of tuition, resource materials, and professional development for staff.
A grant from The Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center and Montevue Assisted Living Special Projects Fund will be used to support staff training and other projects that enhance medical care for residents.
A grant from The Grace Brashear Winpigler Dental Healthcare Fund will help provide dental care and treatment for residents who have financial need.
“The partnership between Frederick County Government and the Community Foundation to support our seniors in these facilities has been excellent,” said Elizabeth Y. Day, president and CEO. “I am especially grateful to the donors who created these funds. They care very much about enhancing the lives of Citizens and Montevue residents.”
“Citizens and Montevue have always represented something good and something special in our community,” County Executive Jan Gardner said. “These grants help ensure that our seniors enjoy the quality of life they deserve.”
As a leader in grant and scholarship funding, The Community Foundation of Frederick County has given back more than $53 million to the community since 1986. To learn more about the Community Foundation, visit www.FrederickCountyGives.org.
Pictured, from left: Donors Charles Trunk, Kay Sheiss, Linda Turbyville, president, Montevue/Citizens Auxiliaries, and Donald Linton; County Executive Gardner; Dr. Sonja Sperlich, donor; Pilar Olivo, former Director of Community Impact, Community Foundation, and Elizabeth Y. Day, Community Foundation president and CEO.
The new grants bring the Women’s Giving Circle grant total to just over $1.1 million since the first grants were provided in 2006 in support of its mission to provide programs and services promoting self-sufficiency for women and those who depend on them. The 275+ member organization welcomes new people at any time. To learn more, visit www.womensgivingcircleoffred.org.
The following nonprofits received grants:
Advocates for Homeless Families received a $4,000 grant to provide assistance accessing permanent housing or avoid energy shutoff, a $3,000 grant to provide or maintain reliable transportation and childcare, and a $500 grant for its urban gardens program.
Children of Incarcerated Parents Partnership received a $2,000 grant to provide higher education assistance to caregivers of children whose lives have been affected by an incarcerated parent and a $600 grant to provide women inmates leaving the Detention Center with resources that will lead them toward success.
Care Net Pregnancy Center of Frederick received a $2,400 grant to provide safe travel for 100 children in the Frederick community by providing new car seats to families and a $3,900 grant to provide diaper supplies to mothers who need financial assistance.
Daybreak Adult Day Services received a $5,000 grant to provide respite care and support to women caring for older adults.
Frederick Community College Foundation received a $2,500 grant for the Allied Health Academy to provide transportation and childcare assistance to women in the allied health program, and a $7,000 grant for Project Forward Step to provide transportation and childcare assistance to returning single parents who need financial assistance.
Frederick Memorial Hospital received a $3,000 grant for the Survivors Offering Support program to provide hospital integrated peer mentoring to newly diagnosed breast cancer patients.
Frederick Rescue Mission, Inc. received a $10,000 grant to support the Faith House Program to provide support to homeless mothers and children.
Heartly House received a $10,000 grant to provide medical accompaniment and advocacy for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence.
Housing Authority of the City of Frederick received a $7,000 grant and a $6,500 grant, both in support of the Women Succeeding in Education program, helping women in public housing meet their education and employment goals.
Interfaith Housing Alliance received a $6,500 grant in support of its Self Sufficiency Counseling initiative that teaches women effective financial management.
Literacy Council of Frederick County, Inc. received a $3,000 grant to provide textbooks and curricular materials to women to support their literacy goals and improve their self-sufficiency and employment opportunities.
Mental Health Association of Frederick County received a $7,000 grant in support of its Parent Coach program to support non-custodial mothers and a $7,000 grant in support of its Healthy Families Frederick program to improve parenting skills.
Mission of Mercy, Inc. received a $4,000 grant in support of dental services for women, a $2,300 grant to provide medications for women, a $2,300 grant to provide medical care for women with diabetes and a $2,300 grant to provide medical care for women with hypertension.
Partners In Care received a $6,000 grant to help coordinate volunteers with older women who receive 2,000 free rides yearly for medical appointments and assistance for everyday living tasks.
Planned Parenthood of Maryland received a $7,500 grant to provide reproductive health care screenings, tests and treatments to women living at or below poverty level.
The Religious Coalition for Emergency Human Needs received a $10,000 grant for eviction and utility interruption prevention for women and their families, and a $7,000 grant to help provide emergency shelter and case management support for homeless women with children.
Second Chances Garage received a $7,500 grant in support of the low-cost vehicle repair program for women, and a $4,000 grant to provide refurbished vehicles for women.
Seton Center, Inc. received a $10,000 grant in support of the DePaul Dental Women’s program to provide dental screenings and services to low income women.
Student Homelessness Initiative Partnership of Frederick County (SHIP) received a $10,000 grant to provide expanded emergency shelter for homeless mothers and their children.
Wells House at Gale Recovery received an $8,000 grant in support of drug and alcohol recovery and employment services for women and a $1,200 grant to provide a computer station with printer at The Gale House.
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