$176,000 Bequest to Benefit Fred L. Thomas and Emigean Gray Thomas Scholarship



Sept. 7, 2010 – The Southeast Missouri University Foundation has received a $176,000 bequest from the Fred Thomas estate to benefit the Fred L. Thomas and Emigean Gray Thomas Scholarship Fund.

The scholarship is awarded to incoming freshmen from Bollinger County high schools. Second preference is given to high school graduates from Wayne County, Missouri. This year’s scholarship recipients are Johana Allen, Chelsea Broshuis and Whitney Vaughn, all of Marble Hill, Mo.; Jessica Dickey of Glenallen, Mo.; Jeremy-James Gray of Cape Girardeau, formerly of Marble Hill; and Melissa Leonard and Heather Thorne, both of Patton, Mo.

The Fred L. and Emigean Gray Thomas Scholarship was established in 1991 by family and friends as a lasting tribute to the Thomas’ contributions in education and community service for the residents of Bollinger County.

Mr. Thomas was born Nov. 14, 1917, in Zalma, Mo. After his graduation from Zalma High School in 1936, he taught in a rural school for year. He attended Southeast Missouri State University for two years prior to beginning his career as an assistant manager of General Merchandise and Super Market Stores.

Throughout his life, Mr. Thomas was active in his community in the Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite, High 12 and the United Methodist Church. He also served as a Marble Hill alderman.

Mr. Thomas died Jan. 19 of this year.

Mrs. Thomas was born in Zalma, Mo., on Feb. 20, 1918. She graduated from Zalma High School in 1936 and from Southeast Missouri State University in 1957. She taught elementary school for 41years in Zalma and Marble Hill, Mo. She was recognized as Who’s Who in Missouri Elementary Teachers, inducted into the Alpha Delta Kappa Honorary Society and selected as Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America. Mrs. Thomas also was active in the community through the Eastern Star and the United Methodist Church.

Mrs. Thomas died Oct. 26, 2004.