A Mother's Wish Fulfilled

By Tom O'Keefe '64, Director of Planned Giving

Robert and Marilyn ElderIn 1966, Marilyn and Robert Elder decided to send their oldest son, Bob, to U of D Jesuit High School when he graduated from Our Lady of Loretto Grade School in Redford Township. That decision marked the beginning of a connection between the Elder family and The High that continues to this day. Ultimately, all five Elder brothers Bob, Rick, Ron, Randy and Roy would attend U of D Jesuit.

Mr. and Mrs. Elder's support of The High continued throughout their lives. Shortly after Mrs. Elder's death in 2014, the Elder brothers discovered a request from their mother that they use some of her assets to make a gift to the U of D Jesuit financial aid endowment. The brothers were so moved by her request that they also decided to make individual gifts to the financial aid endowment.

When Rick Elder '71 informed me of the family's gift, I asked him what motivated his parents to support U of D Jesuit for all those years. He told me that his parents believed that The High was a significant factor in the successful family and professional lives of their sons. They had to make sacrifices to send their five sons to The High, but they did so because they wanted their boys to have the best possible base both in faith and academics for whatever career choices they made. Rick also told me that his parents respected the Jesuits for their courageous decision to stay in Detroit when there was strong pressure for the school to move to the suburbs.

The gift from the Elder family will help to make the education that they value so highly available to future generations of Cubs.

It's a great day to be a Cub!

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