Family and friends of the late Tom Rudisill, E&H Class of 1967, gathered at Emory & Henry Saturday, Oct. 4, to celebrate an endowed scholarship established at the College in his memory.
Rudisill, known affectionately by his friends as “Root,” had tremendous love of people, according to Doug Kanney, a member of the E&H Class of 1968 and a friend and fraternity brother of Rudisill. “I believe that the secret to Tom’s life was the way he made friendships. In many instances, Tom gave more than he received, and his friends were always a joy to him.”
Rudisill, who died in in December 2013, was an English teacher in the Roanoke Valley. He recruited countless students to attend Emory & Henry and was a loyal E&H football fan who seldom missed a chance to offer a tailgate meal at games.
Tom felt that his life was not only his own, but also belonged to others as well, and I believe that is what made Tom such a good friend to so many. Tom was an inspiration in tough times, a source of encouragement to us, and faithful and loyal to the very end.Doug Kanney
The Tom Rudisill Memorial Endowed Scholarship was initiated in January with gifts from family and friends. The fund reached the threshold for fully endowed status ($25,000) in August 2014.
“This is a tribute not only to Root himself, who touched so many of us, other friends, and students, but also to those who contributed so generously. Given a timeline of three years, the scholarship was endowed in record time – in just a few months,” said Bill Shanks, E&H Class of 1967 who co-led the effort with Kanney to raise the funds for the scholarship.
Annual proceeds from the endowed scholarship will support a needy student enrolled at Emory & Henry, with first preference given to a student majoring in English.