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叫人非常敬重的关心教育的美国老人

已有 4879 次阅读 2010-3-18 13:16 |个人分类:游学感想|系统分类:人物纪事|关键词:传奇的普通人| 传奇的普通人



每 年的奥斯卡奖对我来说没有任何吸引力,原因是我只喜欢好莱坞明星们的脸蛋,却从来不喜欢他们的为人, 奥斯卡奖颁奖的地点是不变的柯达剧院,好莱坞云云众众美女帅哥,富婆,花少有钱的人多极了,他们的豪宅有贵到5000万美元的,顶级帅哥汤姆克鲁兹为离婚 就要化掉1亿美元的,却没有一个明星出来捐一笔钱建一座比柯达剧院更气派的奥斯卡奖颁奖场地了,更不要说好看起了几乎有点破烂的星光大道了,如今百年老店 柯达公司已经破产,只给人们留下了唯一的记忆亮点柯达剧院。加州的中小学和大学如今都缺钱,也没见明星们作点事情。

住在芝加哥以北的小城市-森林湖市美国百岁人瑞葛丽丝•葛洛纳今年1月辞世,遗赠700万美元给伊利诺伊州母校森林湖学院。终身未婚的她,靠43年秘书生涯的薪水,是如何存下这笔巨款而捐给她的母校的!

葛洛纳,她一向生活简朴,但不吝啬,生前已为母校设立奖学金,陆续捐赠了大约18万美元。但她觉得还不够,两年前成立基金会,准备把财产捐给母校。她的律师 和多年老友马拉特把这笔遗赠通知校长时,700万美元的庞大金额把校长吓了一大跳。葛洛纳无私的奉献传为佳话,大家更好奇的是,究竟她是如何存下700万 美元?森林湖是富人小区,当地豪宅林立、名车满街跑,葛洛纳也可以享受富裕的生活,但她选择住在只有一个房间 的小屋,也不买汽车,出门都是走路。她身上穿的是廉价衣服或二手衣、电视机是笨重的淘汰机型。但她可不小气,退休后四处旅行,并透过马拉特匿名捐赠礼物给 当地居民。

葛洛纳12岁时成为孤儿,和双胞胎姊妹一起被收养,养父母供她接受大学教育。1931年大学毕业后,她进入亚培药厂担任秘书, 一做就是43年。 和许多经历过经济“大萧条”的人一样,葛洛纳对金钱支出十分谨慎,除了省吃俭用,她的财富起源于1935年开始的第一笔180美元股票投资。

她 以60美元价格认购三股亚培股票,经过多次配股,又把股利再投入买股票。加上亚培股价节节高升,葛洛纳去世时,当初180美元的投资已滚到700万 美元。葛洛纳的遗产让森林湖学院每年可有30万美元收入,让该校1300名学生可拿奖学金实习和出国进修。葛洛纳也把她的小房子捐给母校,给领取奖学金的 女学生当宿舍,这间宿舍就定名为“葛丽丝小屋”。

葛洛纳这样的女士才是我非常敬重的人,人的一生其时很短暂,过份的追求个人享受是不足取 的,特别是损人利己的生活更是不耻的行为!我们的生命只会一代一代的传延下去的,我们的太阳系,地球总有终结的一天的,作为人类最高的境界和愿望就是推动 人类文明的发展和延续,实现这个目标也只有通过发展教育科技才你能成功,对科学教育有贡献的人才是地球文明中永存的名子。

Like many people who lived through the Great Depression, Grace Groner was exceptionally restrained with her money.

She got her clothes from rummage sales. She walked everywhere rather than buy a car. And her one-bedroom house in Lake Forest held little more than a few plain pieces of furniture, some mismatched dishes and a hulking TV set that appeared left over from the Johnson administration.

Her one splurge was a small scholarship program she had created for Lake Forest College, her alma mater. She planned to contribute more upon her death, and when she passed away in January, at the age of 100, her attorney informed the college president what that gift added up to.

"Oh, my God," the president said.

Groner's estate, which stemmed from a $180 stock purchase she made in 1935, was worth $7 million.

The money is going into a foundation that will enable many of Lake Forest's 1,300 students to pursue internships and study-abroad programs they otherwise might have had to forgo. It will be an appropriate memorial to a woman whose life was a testament to the higher possibilities of wealth.

"She did not have the (material) needs that other people have," said William Marlatt, her attorney and longtime friend. "She could have lived in any house in Lake Forest but she chose not to. … She enjoyed other people, and every friend she had was a friend for who she was. They weren't friends for what she had."

Groner was born in a small Lake County farming community, but by the time she was 12 both of her parents had died. She was taken in by George Anderson, a member of one of Lake Forest's leading families and an apparent friend to Groner's parents.

The Andersons raised her and her twin sister, Gladys, and paid for them to attend Lake Forest College. After Groner graduated in 1931, she took a job at nearby Abbott Laboratories, where she would work as a secretary for 43 years.

It was early in her time there that she made a decision that would secure her financial future.

In 1935, she bought three $60 shares of specially issued Abbott stock and never sold them. The shares split many times over the next seven decades, Marlatt said, and Groner reinvested the dividends. Long before she died, her initial outlay had become a fortune.

Marlatt was one of the few who knew about it. Lake Forest is one of America's richest towns, filled with grand estates and teeming with luxury cars, yet Groner felt no urge to keep up with the neighbors.

She lived in an apartment for many years before a friend willed her a tiny house in a part of town once reserved for the servants. Its single bedroom could barely accommodate a twin bed and dresser; its living room was undoubtedly smaller than many Lake Forest closets.

Though Groner was frugal, she was no miser. She traveled widely upon her retirement from Abbott, volunteered for decades at the First Presbyterian Church and occasionally funneled anonymous gifts through Marlatt to needy local residents.

"She was very sensitive to people not having a whole lot," said Pastor Kent Kinney of First Presbyterian. "Grace would see those people, would know them, and she would make gifts."

Groner never wed or had children — the sister of one prospective groom blocked the marriage, Marlatt said — but with her gregarious personality she had plenty of friends. She remained connected to Lake Forest College, too, attending football games and cultural events on campus and donating $180,000 for a scholarship program.

That allowed a few students a year to study internationally, including Erin McGinley, 34, a junior from Lake Zurich. She traveled to Falmouth, Jamaica, to help document and preserve historic buildings in the former slave port. The experience was so satisfying that she is trying to get Lake Forest to create a similar architectural preservation program.

"It affected my (career ambitions) in a way I didn't expect," she said.

But Groner was interested in doing more, so two years ago she set up a foundation to receive her estate. Stephen Schutt, Lake Forest's president, knew of the plan for the past year, but had no idea how large the gift would be until after Groner passed away Jan. 19.

The foundation's millions should generate more than $300,000 a year for the college, enabling dozens more students to travel and pursue internships. Many probably wouldn't be able to pursue those opportunities without a scholarship: 75 percent of the student body receives financial aid, Schutt said.

But the study and internship program is not the end of Groner's legacy. She left that small house to the college, too. It will be turned into living quarters for women who receive foundation scholarships, and perhaps something more: an enduring symbol that money can buy far more than mansions.

It will be called, with fitting simplicity, "Grace's Cottage."



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