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USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund

Doug Stanton, author of In Harm's Way, and the Grand Traverse Community Regional Foundation, have announced the educational grant recipients of the 2002 - 2003 USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund Scholarship Program.

They are:

Kristen Burgess, Bloomfield Hills MI, granddaughter of John Heller Lucas Buckett, Beacon NY, grandson of Victor Buckett Kelly O'Donnell, Indianapolis IN, granddaughter of James O'Donnell Suzanne Trujillo, Gresham OR, granddaughter of Erwin Henson Michael Bernacil, Livermore CA, grandson of Concepcion Bernacil Patrick Marchman, Elinhurse IL, grandson of John Howison Jenny Mickey, Menomonie WI, granddaughter of Melvin Jacob Jonathan Summers, Birmingham AL, grandson of Richard Stevens Johanna Summers, Birmingham AL, granddaughter of Richard Stephens Greg Dail, Hertford NC, grandson of Felton Outland.

Background of the USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund:

The mission of the USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund is to honor the military service and the memory of the heroic men of the USS Indianapolis, and to foster community service in the tradition of their selfless concern for each other while at sea.

The USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund is a non-profit, charitable fund established by Doug Stanton, author of In Harm's Way. The Fund is established with the Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation, which is a public, non-profit charitable institution based in Traverse City, Michigan. The purpose of the Fund is to benefit the USS Indianapolis Survivors and their families.

Advisors to the Fund include a representative from the USS Indianapolis Survivors' Organization, Richard Paroubek, and the chairman of the Second Watch, Joseph Lanter. The membership of Second Watch includes descendants of USS Indianapolis Survivors. Second Watch is a service organization dedicated to the "promotion of citizenship and patriotism and remembering what America is about."

In addition to donations from the Fund made toward the publication of the USS Indianapolis Survivors' oral-history book project, and to the USS Indianapolis Survivors' Organization "Adopt- A-Survivor" program, the Fund has established a $7,500 college scholarship program for the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of living USS Indianapolis survivors. This is called the USS Indianapolis Scholarship Program. The USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund funds the Scholarship Program.

Description of the USS Indianapolis Scholarship Program:

The purpose of the USS Indianapolis Scholarship Program is to support the educational careers of the descendants of USS Indianapolis survivors by awarding scholarships on an annual basis. It is this school-age generation who will carry on the memory of the service and sacrifice of the men of the ship. Many veterans' organizations, as well as commercial trade associations, offer educational grants to the descendants of their members. Until now, this hasn't existed in regard to the living descendants of USS Indianapolis survivors.

In this inaugural phase of the Scholarship Program, 10 grants of $750 each have been awarded for the spring semester of academic year 2002-2003. There were ten qualifying applications for the available ten grants. All grants are directed to the recipient's educational institution.

The educational grants are awarded to the grandchildren or great grandchildren of living USS Indianapolis survivors. Applicants must have been full-time students at a vocational/technical, community college, or accredited liberal arts institution, and maintained a 3.0 GPA during their high school or college careers.

Each applicant was asked to write an essay describing 1) What life lessons the ordeal of being a USS Indianapolis crewmember imparted to their grandfather/great grandfather; and 2) What these life lessons have taught the applicant.

The mission of these essays is to foster a connection and conversation between generations within families; publicly honor the grandfather/great grandfather who is a USS Indianapolis survivor; and further broadcast the role of the USS Indianapolis in United States History.

All essays will be published on the USS Indianapolis Survivors' website, the Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation website, and the In Harm's Way website.

The goal of the USS Indianapolis Scholarship Program, which is supported by the USS Indianapolis Survivors Fund, is to be self-sustaining. The Scholarship Program's mission and application requirements will be revised as needed, and funding for the 2003 - 2004 spring semester is being sought. Private and corporate tax-deductible donations can be sent to:

The USS Indianapolis Survivors' Fund c/o The Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation 250 East Front Street Suite 310 Traverse City, MI 49684.