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Estate gift of $1.2 million will provide scholarships to MU students

The widow of a 1947 Manchester graduate has left a $1.2 million gift to the University in memory of her husband. The Keith Kindell Hoover Memorial Scholarship Fund will provide scholarships to any worthy Manchester students at the direction of Gerda W. Hoover, who died in 2019.

Keith was born in 1935 in Iowa, but he grew up in Ohio, where his family operated Sugar Grover Mills and Elevators. He studied communication studies at Manchester and later earned a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Bethany Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in psychology from Northwestern University.

While studying at the University of Hamburg, Germany, Keith met Waltraud Gerda Wolff. The two married in 1952 and settled in Lombard, Ill., a suburb of Chicago.

Keith maintained a clinical psychology therapy practice and taught college-level classes. His passion was designing, building and flying radio-controlled model airplanes. He died in 2003.

Gerda became an American citizen and earned a master’s degree in German literature from Northwestern. She taught high school and college German. A prolific writer, she published four books of poems and stories.

“Leaving such a generous estate gift to his alma mater was a wonderful way for Gerda to honor Keith’s memory,” said Melanie Harmon, vice president for advancement. “That legacy is now part of Manchester’s endowment and it will help educate students for generations to come.”

Gifts to an endowment fund are permanently invested to supply a steady, annual source of funds for an enduring impact. Many donors choose to create a fund in honor of a loved one – to commemorate a family legacy or an individual. An endowment can be restricted for particular purposes or unrestricted, at the request of the donor.

For information about creating an endowment, call the Office of Advancement at 260-982-5412.