Cheryl and Franz Bunnell - Chapman Legacy Society
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Gifts Established:

  • Wilford and Ruth Granger Endowment Fund for the Make A Difference Engineering (MADE) Program | Est. 2012
brick engraved with name Cheryl and Franz Bunnell

Cheryl and Franz Bunnell

The legacies that parents leave their children come in many forms. The late Wilford and Ruth Granger instilled in their daughter, Cheryl Granger Bunnell, a curiosity about different cultures and people, a concern for the needs of others, and the determination to support the less fortunate.

A United States Marine who served in the Korean conflict, Wilford Purvis Granger pursued an exciting career in the international oil industry, traveling to countries around the world using his skills as a carpenter and construction superintendent. At his side was Emma “Ruth” Loftin Granger, a wonderful spouse, mother and community volunteer. She adored children and always stepped up to lend a hand to those in need.

Cheryl and her husband, Franz Bunnell, helped their son, Zachary Bunnell (BS ’15), enroll at The University of Tulsa in the mechanical engineering program, and Mr. and Mrs. Bunnell began to learn about the hands-on service projects that the College of Engineering and Natural Sciences carried out as part of its curriculum. Zachary, for example, traveled to Cotani, Bolivia, as part of TU’s Engineers Without Borders to construct solar water heaters for the town’s residents and to promote hygiene and sanitation for the village.

The Bunnells also toured the Department of Mechanical Engineering with Professor John Henshaw, and they learned about TU’s Make a Difference Engineering program or MADE. For more than 25 years, students in the MADE program have worked on projects that have fundamentally improved the lives of others, particularly children with disabilities. Students have worked on an array of projects, such as designing and building a “magic carpet” motorized vehicle and a special tricycle, both of which gave children with physical disabilities the ability to move around independently.

The successful efforts of these TU students on behalf of children with special needs touched the Bunnells’ hearts. Consequently, the couple decided to help fund this unusual collegiate program in a way that would also memorialize Mrs. Bunnell’s altruistic and caring parents. In 2012, the Bunnells established The Wilford and Ruth Granger Endowment Fund for the Make a Difference Engineering (MADE) Program at The University of Tulsa. Annual earnings from the endowment help cover the costs of MADE student projects.

The University of Tulsa is deeply grateful to Cheryl and Franz Bunnell for this thoughtful endowment gift, which will strengthen the MADE Program at TU while sustaining the caring legacies of Wilford and Ruth Granger for many years to come.