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Published: Wednesday, 2/10/2010

2 Bluffton institutions to share $1M bequest

BLUFFTON, Ohio — The $1 million estate of James and Frieda Basinger will be shared by Bluffton University and Mennonite Home Communities.

Mr. and Mrs. Basinger were raised in Bluffton and attended Bluffton University. Mr. Basinger died in 2005 and Mrs. Basinger died in September.

The bequest was announced yesterday at Mennonite Memorial Home, a property of Mennonite Home Communities. The estate gift will provide enhanced support for scholarships for Bluffton students, university President James Harder said.

Laura Voth, chief executive officer for Mennonite Home Communities, said the gift was the largest the organization has received and is a “true blessing.” The organization's funding board will decide how the money will be used.

Mr. Basinger worked in the aeronautics industry in design and research in Los Angeles and taught at Purdue University and a community college in Arizona.

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