Memorial Gifts to Lage Charitable Fund to Aid Community



Dec. 9, 2010 – The Southeast Missouri University Foundation has announced that $15,000 has been received in memorial gifts to the Lage Charitable Gift Fund in memory of the late Wally Lage that will benefit the community in several ways.

The Lage Charitable Gift Fund is part of the University Foundation’s Donor Advised Fund (DAF). The Donor Advised Fund is a unique program for charitable planning allowing donors to establish an account while enjoying several benefits not available through other types of donations.

“The donor advised fund enables people to make a contribution now and direct the contribution to other charities in the future,” says Trudy Lee, director of planned giving. 

Lee says donations to the donor advised fund can go to any program or area associated with the University. Donors can also make gifts to other charities outside the University.

Gifts made to the Lage Charitable Gift Fund will go to support scholarships at Southeast Missouri State University and to a new Pediatric Rooftop Garden at Saint Francis Medical Center, where Lage served on the board of directors. 

“Education and community were paramount to Wally,” said Jenny Shaffer, Lage’s daughter. “He started with nothing and became successful with the help of people who gave him a chance along the way.  He would be proud that the DAF will do that with a Southeast scholarship. The hope is that a hard working student who wouldn’t have the opportunity otherwise will be able to go to college and make a difference.”

In regard to the Pediatric Rooftop Garden at Saint Francis Medical Center, Shaffer said, “Wally knew having great medical facilities was necessary for the vitality and growth of Cape Girardeau.  Wally also had a great understanding through personal experience of the needs of families surprised by childhood medical crisis.  A garden of comfort is a fitting memorial.” 

Mr. and Mrs. Lage established the DAF through the Southeast Missouri University Foundation prior to Mr. Lage’s unexpected death. It was intended that the DAF would be funded through a bequest.

 “When memorials began to arrive in Wally’s name, the family felt it fitting to implement the fund,” Shaffer said. “Having this in place made the process much easier and provided peace of mind to the family.”

Lage, who died Aug. 19, joined Rust Communications in 1993 where he was vice president and chief operating officer. He was active in the Cape Girardeau community and was a longtime member of the Lions Club and the Saint Francis Medical Center board of directors. He served on boards of numerous newspaper organizations and was a member of the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame. He also was a member of St. Vincent de Paul Church.