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Late grandmother honored at Seven Springs event

| Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, 9:06 p.m.
Mt. Pleasant Journal
Laura Way (left) and her sister, Abbey, crawl under barbed wire along the Mud on the Mountain course at Seven Springs Mountain Resort on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012. Submitted

Laura Way said she wanted to keep the memory of her late grandmother, Peggy Abramowitz, alive by starting a scholarship fund in her name.

A former Mt. Pleasant resident now living in Shreveport, La., Way enlisted the help of her sister Abbey Way, 23, of Mt. Pleasant.

Abbey Way responded by collecting donations to build up that fund from those taking part in the recent Mud on the Mountain event.

Laura Way said she felt compelled to establish the Peggy Abramowitz Memorial Scholarship because of the closeness she shared with her grandmother.

Abramowitz was a member of the Mt. Pleasant Area school board prior to her death one year ago, almost to the date of the 2011 Mud on the Mountain event.

She was a giver, according to Laura Way.

“She taught me so much about giving. It was important to let my grandmother continue to give back to the community she loved,” Laura Way said.

With the help of her mother, Jill Way, Laura sent letters to friends of Abramowitz and members of the surrounding community explaining her goal of raising enough money to start the scholarship fund.

The scholarship will be awarded in $500 increments to Mt. Pleasant Area Junior/Senior High School students, Laura said.

Criteria students must meet to be eligible to receive the scholarship involve grade point average, school activities, involvement in the community and the completion of a written answer to a to-be-determined essay question, she said.

The initial goal was to raise $1,000 and distribute the scholarship to two students this year, she said.

By the end of the Mud on the Mountain event, $650 was raised, she said.

Jill Way said it was fitting that the girls did something challenging after watching their grandmother's fight through health battles.

In addition, Abramowitz always enjoyed watching all four of her granddaughters' athletic endeavors through high school and college, she said.

“It was exciting and an honor to watch Laura and Abbey compete in Mud on the Mountain in my mom's memory. I continued to think if my mom was still here she would have been so proud of both of them. They are allowing her legacy as a giver to continue,” Jill Way said.

Laura Way flew in from Louisiana the day before the event.

The most challenging part of the course for her was adjusting to the temperature difference.

She conditions daily year-round running, but added a series of different exercises to prepare for the event.

Abbey Way said she underwent her routine workouts to prepare for the event, however, the steep inclines were a challenge.

“There was a high wall to climb over, where strangers were helping each other over,” Abbey said.

Donations can be made to the Mt. Pleasant Area School District Peggy Abramowitz Scholarship Fund at the Standard Bank located in Mt. Pleasant.

The Way sisters encourage contributors to notify them at Abbey Way, 539 Pine St. Mt. Pleasant or via email to llway@caddo.k12.la.us so they can personally thank everyone for their support.

Kelly Vernon is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724—547—5722 or kvernon@tribweb.com.

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