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IPFW Sole Recipient of $3.4 Million Estate


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Written by: Communicator StaffAugust 25, 2014

IPFW announced today they were the sole recipient of the $3.4 million dollar estate to support scholarships and students attending IPFW.

The estate came from Oscar and Ophelia Weitzman. No records indicate that the couple had any children.

Oscar Weitzman was a lifelong resident of Fort Wayne, born April 3, 1891. When he was 13 years old he started working at General Electric making around seven cents an hour. Throughout his nearly 50 years of service at General Electric he worked his way through the ranks and became head of the apprentice school and head of the sales team. He died May 30, 1989 at 98 years old survived by his wife Ophelia.

Ophelia Weitzman spent most of her life in the academic world, but also donated much of her time to charitable causes. She was an active member at Trinity English Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne, Chairman of the Deaconesses for 25 years and involved with the outreach program and Priscilla’s Circle. For many years she was a member of the American Association of University Women [AAUW]. In the late May 2010 bulletin AAUW Fort Wayne published a Memories section, which gave more details about Ophelia’s love for academics and passion for education. Ophelia had said that her mother was very talented, but due to family emergencies was unable to finish her education. Her mother had valued school and encouraged her daughter to pursue higher education. Ophelia graduated high school in 1935, six weeks after having turned 16. Five years later she graduated from Indiana University. Once she completed her bachelor’s degree her mother encouraged her further to acquire a master’s degree which she also received from Indiana University in 1948.  She began teaching at Smart School on Pontiac Street before moving onto Harrison Hill for 10 years. She retired from teaching 19 years later when she married Oscar, 28 years her senior, in 1958. Ophelia died at the age of 93, Dec. 26, 2012.

IPFW said they were grateful for the sizable donation.

“Through this gift, Oscar and Ophelia created a living legacy that shows their dedication to the value and importance of higher education,” said Wendy Kobler, vice chancellor for advancement, in the statement declaring the donation.


Story by: Logan Hursh