Quincy University and Quincy Notre Dame High School today announced a $1.2 million scholarship gift from the estate of Evelyn Rebecca “Betty” McLaughlin.
The gift was announced today during a press conference held at Quincy University. Family members, representatives from QU, QND, and Mercantile Bank, who is administering the bequest, were present to make the announcement and present the scholarship gifts.
According to the late Mrs. McLaughlin’s estate, each school will receive in excess of $600,000 to create two academic scholarship funds. Quincy University’s scholarship gift is provided in memory of Mrs. McLaughlin’s late husband, Frederick A. “Fritz” McLaughlin, and Quincy Notre Dame’s gift is presented in memory of her late father-in-law, Henry P. “H.P.” McLaughlin. The bequest to QND is the largest single scholarship gift ever received in the school’s history, and QU’s is the second largest in the university’s 150 years.
"We are deeply grateful that the McLaughlin's were so generous in supporting Quincy Notre Dame and Quincy University. We are especially pleased that Mr. McLaughlin's positive experience as a Quincy College student many years ago helped to motivate such extraordinary generosity," declared Dr. Robert Gervasi, president of Quincy University. “The generosity of the McLaughlin family and their support of Catholic education will benefit future Quincy University students for generations to come.”
“Quincy Notre Dame High School is honored to have been selected as one of the benefactors of the Evelyn McLaughlin Trust. We are tremendously grateful to the entire McLaughlin family. To make such an impactful donation to support the mission of Quincy Notre Dame is truly humbling,” said Kurt Stuckman, executive director of the Quincy Notre Dame Foundation. “Funds received will be invested and dividends accrued will go to benefit future QND students with tuition assistance.”
Inspired by the generosity of the McLaughlin Family, Mercantile Bank in partnership with Wright Investors also announced the creation of an annual $1000 scholarship and iPad available to a graduating Quincy Notre Dame senior attending Quincy University. “Both QND and QU have a long tradition of nurturing and preparing its students with a rich, quality education,” stated Randy McFarland, Senior Vice President and Trust Officer with Mercantile Trust Services. We admire the McLaughlin Family’s gift and the transformational impact it will have on the students’ lives it will touch at both schools. It is in this spirit that we will offer scholarship support to a QND student who chooses to continue his or her education at Quincy University.”
About the McLaughlin Family
Evelyn Rebecca “Betty” Shive McLaughlin was born in Summer Shade, Ky., in 1914. She graduated from Pleasant Hill High School in Pleasant Hill, Ill., and from St. Mary’s School of Nursing in Quincy in 1935.
Frederick A. “Fritz” McLaughlin was born in Monmouth, Ill., in 1911. He graduated from Quincy High School in 1929 and attended the University of Notre Dame for two years from 1930-1932. The economic troubles of the Great Depression brought him back home to Quincy where he attended Quincy College from 1932-33. In 1935, he graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science degree in commerce.
Betty and Fritz McLaughlin were married in 1941 in St. Louis, and made their home in Quincy, where Mr. McLaughlin worked with his father at the H.P. McLaughlin Co. furniture store. The company, started by his father in Iowa in 1916, was moved to Quincy in 1926 and renamed to McLaughlin’s Furniture and Carpets in 1952 upon H.P.’s death.
H.P., Fritz, and Betty shared a love of community service and leadership throughout their lives. They were all members of St. Boniface Church, and Fritz and his father, H.P. were both Rotarians, of which Fritz served as president from 1949-50. They were also both members of the Knights of Columbus and the Retail Furniture Association among others. Betty was a board member and president of Cheerful Home, and though she and Fritz had no children of their own, Betty loved all children and cared deeply about their education.