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Scholarship established in memory of late school superintendent

The family of the late Michael G. Basham, a longtime educator and superintendent of various public school systems in the region, has established a scholarship fund in his memory to benefit students at The University of Virginia’s College at Wise.

Basham, a native of Shawsville, Va., served as superintendent of schools in Scott and Wise counties in Virginia and in school systems in North Carolina and South Carolina. He was a pioneer of education and held a strong belief in the empowerment of learning.

The Michael G. Basham Memorial Scholarship was established by his family to fund scholarships for qualified student athletes at UVa-Wise who participate in football. Basham was a staunch fan of the Cavalier football team and watched his son, Dr. Christopher Basham, play for four seasons, including the inaugural gridiron team.

“The Michael G. Basham Memorial Scholarship is a great way to honor my father and his core beliefs, while helping student athletes achieve their dreams,” Dr. Basham said. “Through his own experiences, he learned the great value of education. He devoted his life to the advancement of students to their greatest potential.”

Michael Basham passed away on Jan. 11, 2014 after a lengthy battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife, Betty Jo Maddux Basham, son Christopher and wife Heather, daughter Michelle Basham and five grandchildren.

“My father was an ardent supporter of UVa-Wise football and believed in the need for student athletes to be ‘the total package’ of high achievement in academics, athletics, and citizenship,” Dr. Basham said. “I know that he would love this scholarship and the opportunities it provides.”

For those who would like to contribute to the fund, please mail checks to the UVa-Wise Development Office at 1 College Avenue, Wise, VA. 24293.  Checks should be made payable to the UVa-Wise Foundation. For more information on the Michael G. Basham Memorial Scholarship Fund, please call 276-328-0129.