Messenger - Vol. 4, No. 3, Page 12
Clara Stradley: A gift to nursing

     A nurse for 40 years, Clara Harrington Stradley of Milford, Del.,
practiced her profession in all three counties of the state, working
in hospitals, schools and doctors' offices. Upon her death, she
bequeathed approximately $2 million to the University of Delaware to
establish an endowed scholarship fund so that other nursing students
could have careers in the profession she so enjoyed.
     The gift, known as the Wilmer and Clara Stradley Scholarship
Fund, is created through two charitable remainder trusts-one that pays
income for life to Clara's sister, and the other that does the same
for her brother. At their deaths, the remaining funds will come to the
UD. The University also received one of Mrs. Stradley's residences in
     Scholarships from the endowed fund will be awarded on the basis
of academic merit and financial need to recipients who have exhibited
strong motivation and effort.
     "The College of Nursing is very excited about this generous and
timely gift," Dean Betty Paulanka said. "It comes at a time when
nursing enrollments are beginning to decline on a national level.
Thus, more funding for nursing scholarships will help us to be more
     Clara Stradley was born in Kent County, Del., between Milford and
Frederica. One of seven children, she graduated from Milford Memorial
Hospital School of Nursing in 1929 and became a registered nurse. At
that time, her mother made all of her uniforms.
     Her sister recalls that Clara maintained a difficult
schedule-working all day in the hospital and training at night. It
took a long time and lots of dedication for student nurses to earn the
coveted nurse's cap, her sister says, and many never made it. It was a
proud day for the entire family when Clara got hers, her sister
     Clara used her skill and training in positions throughout the
state. During her nursing career, she worked at the former Delaware
Hospital in Wilmington, at Milford Memorial Hospital and at Beebe
Medical Center in Lewes. She also served as the first school nurse at
the first Caesar Rodney High School in Camden, Del., and had
experience as a nurse in doctors' offices. She worked as a private
duty nurse until 1971 when she married Wilmer Stradley and retired
from her profession.
     Wilmer Stradley, who died in 1973, was the president of Diamond
Ice & Coal Co. in Wilmington until his retirement in 1933 and was
chairman of the board when the firm was sold to American Consumer
Industries Inc. in 1962.
     He was a member of the board of the Wilmington Trust Co., the
Artisans Savings Bank, the New Castle Mutual Insurance Co. the
Electric Hose & Rubber Co. and the Wilmington Medical Center, and he
served on the Wilmington Park Trust Fund Commission.
     Approximately 20 years before Clara Stradley's death, Wilmer
Stradley left another bequest to the University. His gift-for
unrestricted support-was used to create an endowed fund that has a
current market value of approximately $1.5 million.
     "The University is grateful to the Stradleys for including the UD
in their separate estate plans," Paula M. Tilmon, director of trusts
and estates in the Development Office, said.

For more information on the advantages of planned gifts, call Paula
Tilmon, Esq., at (302) 831-2104, or write to her in care of University
Development, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716.
                                                          -Beth Thomas