Foundation bestows major gift to DeSales School

Wed, Feb 20th 2019 03:00 pm
DeSales Principal, Karen Rahill accepts a $200,000 check from Foundation President, Dan Judge.  (Courtesy of DeSales School)
DeSales Principal, Karen Rahill accepts a $200,000 check from Foundation President, Dan Judge. (Courtesy of DeSales School)

LOCKPORT — Sam and Gerry Ward lived in Lockport most of their lives. Sam was the owner of Ward, Beals and McCarthy, an industrial distributor headquartered in Lockport until its sale in 1990. He and Gerry were always very generous with their time, talent and their resources for a variety of charities and institutions in Western New York. When his cousins, Jennifer Judge Murphy and Karen Judge Rahill, who are alumni of DeSales High School, started to send their children to the Catholic elementary school, he became very interested in helping DeSales financially through many annual campaigns. Sam Ward became even more committed when Rahill was named principal a few months before his death in November 2017. Dan Judge stated "As president of the Sam and Gerry Ward Foundation I knew that the final gifts of the foundation should go to the schools that are providing a high quality Catholic education to my grandchildren. I know that Sam would be very pleased to have the foundation provide this major gift to DeSales and be used for capital improvements." Judge presented Rahill, with a check for $200,000 from the Sam and Gerry Ward Foundation. These funds have been earmarked for a number of projects around the school campus.

In his will, Ward also named DeSales a beneficiary. The funds received from this generous estate gift have been used to renovate the middle school hallway. New lockers and carpet have been installed with lighting and wall designs on their way soon.

DeSales Board President, Patricia Shea, recognized the generosity of the Ward estate, "The renovations benefit both current and future DeSales students. We are honored Mr. Ward and his family have given such generous gifts to our beautiful school."

DeSales is Eastern Niagara County's only Catholic School, welcoming students of all faiths from pre-school through eighth grade.
For more information call 716-433-6422, visit

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