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Bestselling Author Bequeaths $18 Million to Reed College

David Eddings (July 7, 1931 to June 2, 2009) was best known for the Belgariad and Mallorean series, which have been translated into dozens of languages.

Portland, OR (July 15, 2009)--David Eddings, famed fantasy fiction author and 1954 Reed College graduate, has made a bequest in excess of $18 million to Reed College. The gift is among the largest contributions to the college since Amanda Reed’s bequest established the institution 98 years ago. Eddings passed away at his home in Carson City, Nevada, on June 2, at the age of 77.

Eddings directed that his gift be used to support students and faculty across the college with emphasis given to those studying language and literature. More than two thirds of the gift will provide financial aid to help students of limited financial means attend Reed. In addition, funds will endow the David Eddings Professorship in the English department and support the cataloguing and maintenance of David Eddings’ archives, which the author also gave to the college.  Reed has already received $14 million of the gift.

“It is a generous gift, the product of a lifetime of intellectual labor and deep interest in providing similar educational opportunities to future hardworking students. At a time when the college struggles to meet families' need for scholarship support, this new endowed fund is timely and will allow the college to increase funds available for financial aid as well as the academic program,” said Hugh Porter, vice president of college relations. “The record of David’s writing and his success are astonishing. We welcome this opportunity to recognize his achievement and to catalogue and maintain his archives.”

David Eddings is one of the most successful fantasy fiction writers of his generation. He has published more than 25 books, many coauthored with his wife, Leigh Eddings, who passed away in 2007. David and Leigh were best known for the Belgariad and Mallorean series, which have been translated into dozens of languages. Both series of books follow the adventures of Garion an orphaned farm boy as he fulfils an ancient prophecy.

Eddings's manuscripts and research materials will be housed in Reed College's Eric V. Hauser Memorial Library.

The other beneficiary of Eddings' estate is Denver's National Jewish Health, the nation's number one respiratory hospital. It will receive one-third of the total estate to pioneer new approaches in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of childhood asthma. The gift is the largest ever made to the hospital.