Abby Garcia was a bright light, illuminating the lives of her parents and friends until her tragic death in 2008. Now her legacy lights the way for other comrades of the quest. Her father, Arthur Garcia, has established the Abigail Garcia Memorial Scholarship, to be given to a science major with financial need. This year it was given to chemistry major Drew Gingerich ’15.
“Abby’s focus was on chemistry and she received financial aid,” Garcia says. “I thought it was time to give back for the great experience she had.”
An extraordinary student, Abby started high school when she was 11 years old and completed her senior year as an exchange student in Thailand at the age of 14.
As a 16-year-old freshman she blossomed at Reed. “Abby was a very freethinking person and loved the fact that although Reed has a very difficult course schedule, it allows students to take their own path to learning,” he says.
Good grades and a focus on chemistry opened the door for Abby to work as an intern at the Palo Verde nuclear plant in Arizona the summer after her freshman year. Invited to return the following summer, she was driving to her first day back at the plant when she died in a single-car crash. She was 18 years old.
“I am not a wealthy man,” Arthur explains. “When Abby passed, I asked my friends and family to help however they could in getting this scholarship funded. I was able to get through the tragedy of losing my daughter knowing that I had friends and family who cared so much about her.”
Contribute to the Abigail Garcia Memorial Scholarship. Just write the scholarship name in the notes section when making the gift.