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Scholarship helps others fulfill life cut short

Ethan Zwiers has a life full of potential to fulfill. Luckily, he’s not alone in that assignment.

Ethan, a Stockbridge High School graduate from Hilbert, is this year’s recipient of the Katie Hemauer Memorial Scholarship, with our Chilton Area Community Foundation partner. The scholarship fund was set up by Katie’s family in honor of the 2004 UW-Green Bay graduate who was valedictorian of her class at Stockbridge High School.

Katie Hemauer

She was killed in a collision with a drunk driver Nov. 25, 2005, on the way to her family’s cabin near Mountain. She was 23.

She had just started on a career to save the Earth, working as a groundwater specialist for Calumet County after earning a degree in environmental science. Her life’s ambitions went unfulfilled.

Now it’s Ethan’s turn.

A $1,000 scholarship is awarded annually to a graduate of Stockbridge High School intending to study science. A $500 scholarship goes to a Chilton High School graduate. Ethan will attend UW-Stevens Point to study forestry.

Next year, Ethan will be joined in the mission by two more graduates, and two more the year after, and the next, and the next, in perpetuity. In time, there will be a legion of graduates from Calumet County out in the world becoming what Katie could have been.

That won’t heal the pain for her family, but it is still remarkable.

The Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region awarded $1.1 million in scholarships to 298 students last year. We have scholarships available each year for students from 60 high schools. Who would your scholarship fund honor?

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