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September 17, 2002

Trucking industry executive, wife
leave $500,000 to ISU

Bequest to fund scholarships for business students, athletes

Frances and Welby Frantz

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. Two groups of students and two campus buildings will benefit from recently announced gifts to the Indiana State University Foundation. [video]  [Campus Connection article]

A $500,000 bequest from the estate of Welby M. and Frances C. Frantz will be divided evenly for scholarships in the School of Business and for student athletes while a $90,000 bequest from the late June Cunningham Hazeldine will be split equally between Cunningham Memorial Library and Normal Hall.


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Welby Frantz was a trucking industry executive in Terre Haute and a long time advocate and benefactor of higher education. Frances Frantz was a teacher of dance and physical education in Peoria, Ill., prior to the couple’s marriage.      

During a nearly 30-year career with Eastern Express, Welby Frantz built the Terre Haute business into one of the leading motor carrier companies in the nation. He served as vice chairman of American Trucking Association for 15 years and was a director of the United States Chamber of Commerce.

Frantz shared his knowledge of business with Indiana State students as a distinguished executive in residence in the School of Business. He served on the ISU Foundation Board of Directors for 30 years, 15 years as president. He received an honorary doctorate degree from ISU in 1994.

“There are many exciting opportunities in the ISU School of Business. One such opportunity is increasing emphasis on providing additional support for outstanding students who wish to major in business at ISU,” said Ronald F. Green, the school’s dean. “Gifts such as this will play a major role in the future development of our school and will allow us to attract even more highly qualified students to our program.”

Athletic Director Andrea Myers was coach of the Lady Sycamore basketball team from 1982 to 1989 and recalls the Frantzes’ love for athletics.

“Fran mentioned to me that, although she had been a dancer rather than an athlete, how much she enjoyed watching what was happening with women’s athletics at that time,” Myers said. “They certainly had a love for athletics and were great fans and great supporters. We really appreciate what they have done for intercollegiate athletics.”

The Frantzes’ gift will empower young people starting a new chapter in their lives, said ISU President Lloyd W. Benjamin III.

“People make a lot of investments here, of themselves and

other people. This couple clearly did in the cultural life of this community as well as Indiana State University. [Their] years of service is very impressive,” Benjamin said. “They will indeed be proud of how we will manage these funds and the consequences it will have in the lives of young people.”
Cari Sparks, manager of the trust department at Terre Haute First National Bank and a friend of the Frantzes, announced the gift. Welby Frantz served on the board of directors of Terre Haute First from 1964 until his death in 1996. Frances Frantz died in September 2001.

Friends and family members say the advancement of arts and education is an important part of the legacy of Jane Cunningham Hazeldine, a long time civic leader who died in August.

“She had a passion for history. She had a passion for education and all the cultures that go with those things,” Ted Hazeldine said.

Jane Hazeldine’s father, Arthur Cunningham, was a pioneer in library science and ISU’s Cunningham Memorial Library is named for him, Ted Hazeldine noted. The library was originally housed in Normal Hall.

“She looked upon the Normal Hall preservation, and what we all hope would be the ultimate restoration of it, to be a point of emphasis on the ISU campus that would be available to alumni groups,” he said.

“As far as the whole academic community, she worked at Rose-Hulman (Institute of Technology) and was close to the leaders of both schools. Historically, she was just fond of seeing to it that both institutions flourished.”

Cunningham was instrumental in getting the ISU library started and was the original owner of part of the ground on which the first library building stands, Susan Davis, ISU archivist, said.

“I always call him a librarian before his time because he really did know his stuff,” Davis said. “Jane I’m sure remembered coming into the library as a child.”

Though it has been empty for 30 years, Normal Hall is now on the Indiana Register of Historic Places, Davis noted, suggesting Hazeldine’s gift may be the inspiration needed to finally spark its renovation.

Normal Hall, which opened in 1909, is “the heritage of Cunningham, but it’s the legacy of the university as a normal school,” said Davis.


Office of University Development, (812) 237-3669.

Dave Taylor, ISU Public Affairs
(812) 237-3743 or

ISU Public Affairs:
(812) 237-3773 or