One of largest estate gifts in UNK history reflects donors’ passion for education
One of the largest estate gifts in UNK’s history will begin providing scholarships to students this fall through a gift from the Amos and Doris Greenamyre estate, creating an endowed scholarship fund at the University of Nebraska Foundation totaling $1.5 million.
Doris Greenamyre died in 2005 at age 86, and Amos died at age 97 in 2007. Income from the endowed fund is expected to generate more than $70,000 a year to help students attend UNK.
“For many (students) scholarship support is what makes university education attainable,” notes Chancellor Doug Kristensen. “That is particularly true at UNK, because we continue to draw a large proportion of our student body from families who have no or very little prior experience with college. Many also come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Gifts like this help worthy students overcome these challenges.”
Amos Greenamyre knew about overcoming challenges.
Kevin McKenzie, Sun City, Calif., the attorney who helped the Greenamyres with their estate plans, reveals, “Amos came from a generation like so many of us, where hard work was essential and there weren’t many opportunities.”
Born in 1909 in Brunswick, Neb., and graduated from Brunswick High School, Amos attended the University of Nebraska. He did not graduate, but like his father and two brothers, Amos became a farmer. He farmed for years on land he bought southeast of Kearney during the Great Depression. He also owned land in Hamilton County and took pride in managing his farms even after he stopped farming and began leasing the land. Amos married Doris in 1964. Born near Minden, Neb., in 1918, Doris graduated from Wilcox High School at age 16 and graduated from Nebraska State Teachers College at Kearney in 1938. She was a teacher at Amherst High School.
“It’s apparent that Mr. and Mrs. Greenamyre had strong feelings about education from the gift they left the foundation to benefit UNK,” Jon Abegglen, UN Foundation Vice President of Development, states. “They understood the value of an education and also the cost students have associated with getting it. They were very generous people with a passion and a vision to achieve the goal of helping young people get an education. We appreciate and thank the Greenamyres for this generous gift."
Amos served on the board of a rural school in Buffalo County, Neb., and both he and Doris were active in Methodist churches in Kearney and in Sun City, Calif., where they
retired in 1971. Their estate was split between UNK and Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln. “There was never any question that the university would benefit from Amos’ estate,” McKenzie states. “He felt strongly about providing opportunities for kids who might not otherwise have an education. He was a very salt of the earth, hard working guy.”