During the summer of 1987, Seth Stormer, a sophomore at Southwestern Central School, participated in a school trip to Germany.
“About two weeks into the trip, I was hit by a car,” Stormer said. He spent the next week and a half in a coma in a German hospital.
Over a month later, Stormer returned to the States and stayed in a rehabilitation center in Erie, Pa. Only able to come home on weekends, tutors made time to go to Erie to make sure he stayed current with his schoolwork. Stormer says that it was the support of his family, fellow students, teachers and the Southwestern community that helped him recover and eventually return to school.
“There were so many people who reached out to me, to my family, during this time that I couldn’t’ even begin to thank them. So instead of paying it back, I wanted to pay it forward and inspire others to do good,” Stormer said. “No matter who you are, you can touch the lives of so many, whether you realize that at the time or not.”
Recently, Stormer created a scholarship fund at the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation to benefit Southwestern and Jamestown High School seniors. The Southwestern Central School and Jamestown High School Community Service Scholarship Fund will be awarded to students who have shown active participation in school activities and community service/volunteerism.
“No matter what these students do, it’s important to have them know what they can do with their education. You never know, these students can go on to create wind turbines, develop medicine, whatever they do, it could change the world,” Stormer said.
Stormer hopes the creation of this fund will serve as a reminder to members of the community, and his former Southwestern classmates, that making one small act can make a positive impression on the future.
To make a tax deductible donation to this fund, click here.