McCollom scholarship creates lasting tribute

A shared commitment to service and the love of flying forever bound the lives of twins John and Robert McCollom. The brothers graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1942 with degrees in aeronautical engineering and ROTC commissions in the U.S. Army Air Corps.

In May 1945, a plane carrying the brothers crashed in New Guinea, killing Robert. John, stranded in the remote jungle along with two other crash survivors, was rescued a month later.

Following John's death in 2001, his widow, Betty, established the John and Robert McCollom Memorial Scholarship to provide financial assistance to undergraduate students majoring in aerospace engineering. It is a fitting tribute to the brothers, whose lives exemplified leadership and service.

Gifts like McCollom's create an enduring legacy, says dean H. Ted Davis.

"Memorial gifts accomplish two significant goals at once: They honor and commemorate a loved one, and they help us achieve our collegiate goals. It's a great way to help build a better, brighter future."

Memorial gifts can be made to a specific program or fund, or their use may be left to the college's discretion. Donors can establish a new fund to commemorate a family member, classmate, faculty member, or friend.

For more information about the McCollom scholarship or about making a memorial gift to honor someone in your life, contact the development office at or 1-800-587-3884.