When asked what was the most important gift that a person could receive, Clare Bernardine McCusker’s reply was “Education … definitely.” Bernardine was a dedicated homemaker, wife, mother of five, and grandmother to seven with a great love for crafts of all kinds. She was well-accomplished in ceramics but also enjoyed needlework, trunk restoration, community plays, and the symphony. She was a founding member of the St. Monica Parish in Lubeck, West Virginia, and was a member of St. Francis Xavier Parish in downtown Parkersburg. She was active in her church and her community, the Parent Teacher Association, and volunteered as a tutor for elementary age students.

When she passed away in July of 2020, her husband, children, and grandchildren, carefully considered how to best commemorate her lifelong devotion to caring for others and to art in our community. They decided to honor her by establishing the Clare Bernardine McCusker Memorial Fund with the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation. With this memorial fund, Bernardine’s caring legacy will continue forever as her passion for arts and crafts is carried on with support available to the community in her name.

This new charitable fund will forever provide annual support to organizations that pursue the development and education of music, arts, and crafts in the Foundation’s service area, causes which were near and dear to Bernardine’s heart. Organizations may submit requests for funding from this new resource through the Foundation’s Community Action Grants process, which is currently open to applications until Feb. 15, 2021. It’s envisioned that projects involving ceramic work, needlework arts, etc., may receive funding through Bernardine’s memorial fund.

Individuals who would like to make a tax-deductible donation to support this new fund are encouraged to send a check made payable to the PACF with “Clare Bernardine McCusker Memorial” on the memo line to:  PACF, PO Box 1762, Parkersburg, WV 26102.   Donations may also be made online by visiting  www.pacfwv.com/donate.  Individuals wishing to learn more about this fund can call the Foundation at 304.428.4438.

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