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Scholarship Honors the Late James Shelton

Wednesday, December 01, 2010
Three years ago, the Marymount University community lost a dear friend, James Shelton. As an MU shuttle driver and supervisor for more than two decades, Mr. Shelton developed friendships with nearly everyone who stepped on his bus – especially the student-athletes who he drove to many away games.

In 2008, the Marymount Men’s Lacrosse Alumni Network established the James Shelton Scholarship fund. With less than $7,000 left to raise, the group hopes to complete the scholarship’s endowment this spring. The outpouring of support for this scholarship from the MU community and Saints fans near and far is a true testament to James Shelton’s legacy.

Michael and Marcia Finnerty, friends of Marymount who established the University’s Finnerty-Sullivan Scholarship, are also contributors to the James Shelton Scholarship fund.

Mrs. Finnerty taught environmental science labs at MU for more than 10 years. She recalls field trips with James Shelton at the wheel: “Every semester, I would sit down with Mr. Shelton, and he would help me arrange transportation for the class field trips.” She laughs, “We were fortunate to have him as the driver on trips to such exciting destinations as sewage treatment plants, recycling centers, landfills, and incinerators!”

Finnerty continues, “One annual highlight that I will always remember was our day-long field trip to a salt marsh, where we did some hiking and canoeing and waded into the water to collect fish. I always hoped that Mr. Shelton would be our driver for that particular trip. His enthusiasm was contagious and comforting for students who might have been a little nervous about going in the water.”

She adds, “James Shelton was not a person to stand by and observe. He was an active participant. Whether at an athletic event or on a class field trip, he was a catalyst, a cheerleader, and an eager participant. He would be out there on the trail, hiking with us. He would get in a canoe and start paddling. And he was always the first to put on hip waders and walk out into the water. Mr. Shelton was always asking questions and setting a positive example for Marymount’s students.”

To support the James Shelton Scholarship, please use the envelope enclosed in this issue of MUtoday, or visit www.marymount.edu/development to make your secure gift online.