The Community Foundation is pleased to announce the establishment of the Retha Dean (Coffing) Martin Scholarship Fund.
Retha Dean (Coffing) Martin (1924-1991) was a lifelong resident of Fountain County and was well known and loved for her unwavering kindness and compassion. During World War II, she graduated as a nursing cadet from the Lakeview College of Nursing in Danville, IL, while her fiancé, Thomas O. Martin, was serving in combat with the United States Marine Corps in the South Pacific. When the war ended, he remained overseas on assignment to China before returning to the United States and being honorably discharged from the military. Both were graduates of Covington High School’s class of 1942.
After the war, they married and settled into farming outside Covington. They were blessed with six children, and later, dozens of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her nursing skills were always in demand on the farm, and the way she tended to others inspired many of her descendants to go into the healing and helping professions. As of 2022 and the founding of this scholarship, we have 3rd and 4th generation retired, practicing, and student nurses in the Martin family as a direct result of her powerful example.
The purpose of this scholarship is to honor Retha Dean’s memory and encourage and support others who feel called to the nursing profession. It is open to ANY resident of Fountain County who has been accepted to, or is currently enrolled in, an accredited bachelor’s level or higher nursing program. The scholarship can be awarded year over year until graduation for students in good standing, up to and including the doctorate level.
Contributions may be made online at www.wicf-inc.org or mailed to: Western Indiana Community Foundation, Attn: Retha Dean (Coffing) Martin Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 175, Covington, IN 47932.