St. Louis duo gives $2.5M to Missouri vet school

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - A St. Louis couple pledged to donate $2.5 million to the University of Missouri’s veterinary school despite having no prior connection to the university.

The gift from Gary Savill and his wife Barbara Stampfli-Savill, who own Silver Wraith Choppers, a custom motorcycle business in Ballwin, will be used to create an endowment to provide partial scholarships for veterinary students. Scholarship recipients will be required to perform at least 120 hours of animal-related community and volunteer service annually, the university announced Monday.

“We are thrilled to be able to give this gift to the College of Veterinary Medicine with the intent that it will support the development of future veterinarians for years to come,” Gary Savill said in a statement. “Barbara and I are animal lovers, and we hope this gift will help care for animals around the nation and the world by educating future classes of veterinarians.”

The Stampfli-Savill endowment will provide one or more scholarships to cover 50 percent of all tuition and fees each year to students with financial needs, with preference given to underrepresented ethnic groups.

“We are grateful to Barbara and Gary for their generosity to the college and appreciate their desire to help increase diversity within the veterinary profession,” Neil Olson, dean of the MU College of Veterinary Medicine, said in a statement. “Their additional aim of fostering community service is one we as a college also embrace.”

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