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Local Legacy Stories

The Community Foundation works to ensure that the charitable wishes of local residents persevere through generations. Our generous legacy donors held an interest in giving back to the community they loved and put a plan in place to make it happen. We are honored to be the steward of their community legacies. Here are a few of their stories.

Ruth & Martha Blumberg

Martha Blumberg accomplished great things in her short life – gaining recognition as a promising young artist when she was just 12 years old. Read More


In Cayuga and western Onondaga counties, children will have additional reading opportunities, more stray animals will find safe shelter and happy homes and residents will enjoy a vibrant parade. All of this thanks to the new Melvin E. Brown Fund at the Central New York Community Foundation; this fund was established by its namesake, a long-time Village of Jordan resident. Read More


The Clarks

William, a prominent Syracuse surgeon, was best known for founding the Clark Burn Center at University Hospital, a six-bed intensive care unit that provides state-of-the-art burn care to residents of 28 surrounding counties. Read More

Larry daley

Larry Daley's license plate may have read BOPREY, standing for 'birds of prey,' but he was nothing like the fierce hunters he so admired. The life-long Cazenovia resident is remembered for being friendly, caring and nurturing to both animals and his fellow man. Read More

Florence Gaedeke

Florence Gaedeke was the first person from her English family to be born in America. She met her husband Bill while in high school at Blodgett Vocational where she studied business, and worked after classes in the factory that his father owned. Read More

Steven Gillette & Bruce Lane

Bruce and Steven enjoyed a 27-year love story before their retirement years were cut short upon their tragic passings. A combined trust and estate gift of more than $2.5 million in support of the couple’s most cherished charities will be continuing their legacy of caring for others with dignity and respect. Read More

bud haylor

Burnett (Bud) Haylor’s 92 years in Syracuse contributed to a life well lived. The successful businessman, caring husband and father and consistent advocate and supporter of local causes never hesitated to lend a helping hand, along with his knowledge and wit, while forever remaining humbleRead More


Judge Frank Harris Hiscock devoted much of his life to practicing law and philanthropy. He had a powerful desire to assist the less fortunate and improve the quality of life in Syracuse and its surrounding areas. His legacy continues to make an impact through the work of Hiscock Legal Aid Society, an organization established by a gift from his will. Read More

ursula hubby

Over her 97 years, Ursula Hubby’s generosity and kindness benefited countless Central New Yorkers. Now, her caring spirit will be carried on through a charitable legacy that will continue to help others for generations. Read More


Roberta and Robert Hurd led fairly modest lives. Robert worked as a tool and die maker and Roberta worked her entire life as an accountant first for American Woolen Mills in Fulton and then General Electric.They were a very devoted couple who were rich in love for one another. Read More


Friends and family of John F. Marsellus remember him as a civic leader who truly loved Central New York. His passion for the community was evident through his continuous involvement in many organizations including being a board member of the Community Foundation, Manufacturers Association of CNY, Everson Museum of Art, Ducks Unlimited, YMCA and a founding member of the Metropolitan Development Association (now CenterState CEO). Read More

Judge Neal P. McCurn

U.S. District Court Judge Neal P. McCurn was a person of character, integrity and generosity. And as the father of six children he was also an example of patience, understanding and compassion. Read More

Gale Owen

Gale Owen was a smart, caring and giving woman with many talents and a signature whistle. A graduate of Manlius Pebble Hill School, Gale lived in Syracuse for most of her life. While raising her daughters as a single mom, Gale volunteered her time, transcribing textbooks into braille for Literacy Volunteers and serving as treasurer for the Syracuse Chapter of the National Organization for Women. Read More

Caroline Palmer

Caroline Palmer, known to her many relatives as Aunt Carol, made everyone feel special and worthy of her attention. Whether it was a family member, one of her second-grade students, or a friend from church, Carol was considered a person you could count on for honesty, patience and respect.
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Dorothy Riester was an artist – a fact she first asserted at five years old. As a sculptor, Dorothy applied her artful touch to everything she did, shaping a life and career that were beautiful and inspiring in equal measure. Read More

Don ryder
When you ask anyone who knew Don Ryder how they would describe him, they all say the same thing; he was a very private and quiet individual, a man who mainly kept to himself. Upon his death in 2015, this private man did something that showed just how much he cared about his community. Read More

Juliette Klein Sharpe

Juliette Klein Sharpe felt truly blessed by her network of friends and her small community. “God takes care of fools and Julie” was something said often by the Skaneateles resident and retired 30-year employee with the telephone company. Read More 

The Thorpes

William and Mary Thorpe were born in Herkimer, NY and grew up on their parents’ farm on a hill just west of the Village of Camillus. Read More

Donald Trufant

Donald Trufant never attended college, but he considered himself a life-long learner, believing that education was the way towards a fulfilling and prosperous life. Now, an endless number of students from Don’s hometown will have the opportunity to advance their education thanks to his foresight and giving nature. Read More


  • Lee Gatta

    My husband Joe and I decided to pay support forward by establishing a charitable giving plan.

  • Linda Dickerson Hartsock

    Volunteerism, giving and community involvement are central to our family value system.

  • The Linns

    We love Central New York and we feel that it is our responsibility to help make it a better place to live.

  • Catherine Winger

    I feel so fortunate to be able to create a fund that will provide for the community that I have called home for my entire life.

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