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C-T, August 30, 2018

Our County Commission was pleased to be informed recently that we have been named to serve on the Warren George Culling Scholarship Fund, Inc. Also, serving on the fund are the principals at Chillicothe High School, Dan Nagel, and Southwest High School, Shannon Hein.

Mr. Culling, a resident of Mooresville, died at age 97 and set up this fund in his trust in order to benefit students who are not necessarily at the very top of their class in grade point. In fact, a provision in the bylaws states that students must have a grade point between 2.0 and 3.3 on a 4-point scale. The scholarship money is to be used to toward tuition and room and board in colleges and universities in Missouri, including the Grand River Technical School. The scholarship also has a renewable provision. Our estimate is that there will be approximately $22,000 paid out in the first year, with a $4000 maximum per student, dependent on how interest rates fare.

Although none of our County Commissioners knew Mr. Culling personally, he did know some of our predecessors; and it appears he wanted to appoint an organization with permanence, which applies to the county and therefore the Commission too. According to information we were given by close friends and relatives, Mr. Culling was a quite a guy. He grew up on a farm in the county during the Depression, so he knew first hand about times being tough. He was a graduate of Chillicothe High School and attended the Chillicothe Business School. He worked as a railroad controller and then enlisted in 1942 in Naval Cadet training with the Marine Corps. He served as a pilot in World War II flying many missions over the South Pacific doing area mapping. After the war, he attended the University of California, Berkley, and received an electrical engineering degree before going to work for Howard Hughes for many years. Mr. Culling was a flying enthusiast who owned and flew his own plane and was a member of the Flying Farmers and the EAA Chapter 944. He married Patricia Blair who preceded him in death in 2011. His survivors included two stepchildren.

It appears that his thoughts regarding this scholarship were that there are well deserving kids who need help with a post secondary education who are not at the top of their class and are, therefore, left out of consideration of most scholarships. This scholarship opportunity seems like a very worthwhile and legitimate idea; and we think there will be students who benefit from his foresight.

The principals from both Southwest and Chillicothe High Schools will be working to draw up more specific criteria for these scholarship awards. Possible criteria, in addition to the grade point average range, will most likely include citizenship, financial need, activities participated in, etc. We plan to award the first set of scholarships at the end of the current 2018-19 school year in May.

We can not thank Mr. Culling personally for his confidence he has placed in us; but we are very appreciative of the opportunity to help some worthy students with their higher education needs.

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Livingston County Courthouse
700 Webster Street
Chillicothe, MO 64601