DARKE COUNTY – The HOPE Foundation of Darke County has helped several local families establish scholarships in honor of a special person or a course of study that is important to them. Using income from invested funds, these scholarships create legacies that continue year after year by providing financial assistance to deserving college students. The five scholarship recipients received a total of $4,750. Overall in 2012, the HOPE Foundation of Darke County awarded nearly $70,000 to 55 graduates of Darke County high schools.
Melvin and Mary Ann C. Stucke of Versailles started an endowment fund in memory of their son, Steven, who died in 1979 at age 18. Each year, investment income supports a scholarship for at least one Versailles High School graduate pursuing an agriculture-related degree. The Stuckes were pleased to award the first Steven Stucke Memorial Scholarship to Mackenzie Buschur of North Star, who is studying agricultural business at Wright State University, and Brent Stammen of North Star, who is studying agricultural communications at Ohio State University.
April Wulber of Versailles started an endowment fund in memory of her husband, Ryan, who died in 2010. Ryan graduated from Versailles High School in 1998 and was a power technician instructor at Miami Valley Career Technology Center. Each year, investment income from this fund supports a scholarship to a Darke County student who was involved in FFA or graduated from MVCTC, and is pursuing an agriculture-related degree. April and her daughter, Aubrey, age 4, presented the first Ryan Wulber Memorial Scholarship to Amy Schmitz, graduate of Mississinawa Valley High School and agriculture student at Ohio State University.
Dick and Cindy Wuebker of Versailles started a fund in 1990 in memory of their son, Matthew, an Ohio State University student who died at age 19. Since then, 21 Versailles High School graduates have received the Matthew Wuebker Memorial Scholarship, which recognizes an outstanding leader of the boys basketball team. The most recent recipient was Damien Winner, 2011 graduate attending Wright State University.
The HOPE Foundation awards an annual scholarship in memory of Versailles resident Joyce Bruns, who died in 1998. Joyce’s husband, Tony, started the scholarship to help nurses pay for continuing education. This year’s recipient, Deb Poeppelman of Ft. Loramie, has worked at Wayne Healthcare for 35 years and is pursuing a master’s degree in nursing from Wright State University. The HOPE Foundation is grateful to these generous families who are helping to enrich the lives of promising students. Over $1.1 million has been awarded to Darke County students since the HOPE Foundation started in 1986. For information on establishing a fund for a scholarship or community grant, call 548-HOPE or visit HOPE’s website at www.hopedarkecounty.com. As the community foundation of Darke County, HOPE receives, administers and distributes charitable gifts for the benefit of Darke County residents.
The HOPE Foundation of Darke County awards the Matthew Wuebker Scholarship each year to a Versailles High School graduate who played on the varsity basketball team. From left: Dick Wuebker, recipient Damien Winner, Cindy Wuebker.