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Memorials & Endowments

Rawhide is honored to receive memorial contributions and endowments from families of loved ones who have supported the organization. Memorial plates are displayed in Rawhide’s Welcome Center as a reminder of family support of the young men who come to the ranch. We provide a thank you to all donors in acknowledgement of gifts received to the surviving family member.

To support any of these funds:

  1. Please use our online cash donation form and select the fund of your choice from the drop down menu.
  2. Or contact us at:
    1. Phone: 1-888-745-7444
    2. Email: DevelopmentDonations@rawhide.org
    3. Contact Form (Select Appropriate Topic in Subject Menu)

The Founder Endowment

The Founder Endowment fund was established in 2007 in honor of John and Jan Gillespie’s 50th wedding anniversary. This fund is dedicated to supporting the Gillespies’ vision of helping troubled young men.

The Gillespies have led Rawhide for 35 years, personally serving as houseparents for over 350 young men. During that time, they never turned anyone away due to lack of funds. They relied on their faith, knowing that God would work in the hearts of donors to provide what was needed.

Please select “Founder Endowment” in the PROGRAM section of the form.

The Bret Starr Memorial Fund

Bret Starr was the youngest son of Bart and Cherry Starr. He was a caring, sensitive person who loved animals and enjoyed horseback-riding. He was popular in school and enjoyed music.

Unbeknownst to anyone, Bret started using drugs. By early 1988, it seemed he’d got his life in order after going to counseling and renewed his commitment to God. But on July 7, 1988, at age 24, he overdosed on cocaine.

Following his death, The Starrs asked that memorial gifts be sent to Rawhide in memory of Bret and the Bret Starr Memorial Fund was established.

Interest income from this restricted fund provides support to alumni with educational needs, medical emergencies, housing, counseling costs, or other emergency expenses.

Please select “Bret Starr Memorial” in the PROGRAM section of the form.

Leah Price Memorial Fund

In 1998, Leah Price joined the staff at Rawhide as a teaching assistant at Starr Academy. Her husband, Ken, was working as an auto mechanic in our Pennau Center. Within a few years, they became houseparents in the About Face program. Then, in 2003, they became the first houseparents for the newly created Academy Program.

In May 2004, Leah was diagnosed with cancer. During her fight she remained committed to her faith in God, believing that He was in complete control. She lost her fight on October 25, 2004.

Her legacy of integrity, faith and service to others continues today through the Leah Price Memorial Fund. Interest income from this restricted fund provides tuition assistance for young men who voluntarily come to Rawhide’s Academy Program.

Please select “Leah Price Memorial” in the PROGRAM section of the form.

Gabrielse Woodworking Shop

Through the generous donation of George Gabrielse, Starr Academy is able to offer wood shop to the students. In 2007, the Gabrielses donated most of the woodworking equipment and wood the shop needed. Since then, the students have created many pieces including bookcases, benches, mirrors, plant stands, and cutting boards.

Funds are needed for ongoing operations of the woodshop, including materials, supplies, and staff wages. If you’d like to contribute to the operation of the shop, visit the link below to donate to the Gabrielse Woodworking Shop fund.

Please select “Gabrielse Woodworking Shop” in the PROGRAM section of the form.

Tuition Assistance

Families of at-risk youth often lack sufficient finances to provide for their son’s long-term treatment and education at Rawhide. Funds are needed to ease the financial burden low-income families face. Your support will help more young men get the quality education they need to experience positive change in their lives.

Please select “Tuition Assistance” in the PROGRAM section of the form.