Honoring Two Couples Whose Legacies Endure

Philanthropy.  Leadership.  Legacy. These are the tenets of the Community Foundation of Middlesex County and the qualities of the many individuals we celebrate and honor throughout the year. We are privileged that donors have chosen to put their dollars to work through the Community Foundation, both during their lifetimes and through planned gifts. These wonderful people have a positive impact on the community and the causes they care about now and well into the future.

June is National Leave a Legacy Month. We are honoring two couples whose stories are truly inspirational and representative of the many donors who work with us to ensure a lasting legacy.

If you have enjoyed an exhibit at the Connecticut River Museum or Florence Griswold Museum, a program at the Old Saybrook Historical Society, or the natural beauty of the Fenwick parklands, you have a shared connection with Ellsworth and Virginia Grant.  Old Saybrook residents, Ellsworth and Virginia were life-long stewards of the humanities, the arts and the environment in Middlesex County. They believed true stewardship comes when organizations are supported both now and in years to come. Ellsworth also recognized that the Community Foundation understands the connection a donor has to the organizations and issues important to them.  The Ellsworth and Virginia Grant Fund, a designated endowed fund established at the Community Foundation, ensures that the causes they supported throughout their lives will be taken care of for generations to come.

Those who knew Barbara and George Hart know that love at first sight is not just a Hollywood cliché. Barbara and George spent a lifetime dedicated to one another, living in many communities and eventually settling in Old Saybrook where they worked to further their passions. Both volunteered their time with many area nonprofits including Meals on Wheels, Old Saybrook Historical Society, and the Essex Garden Club. Of the many community activities they participated in, what mattered most to them was helping with the basic needs of daily life such as visits, meals and transportation, particularly for those fighting cancer. After Barbara lost her battle with cancer, George came to the Community Foundation to honor her life and her work. He established The Barbara Weeks Hart and George H. Hart Memorial Fund to provide support to organizations offering services to cancer patients in Middlesex County.

We’re constantly amazed when we think about Ellsworth, Virginia, Barbara and George. They serve as testaments that dedication, hard work, and love for each other and our community are powerful legacies.  Their stories are ones we love to tell – we invite you to learn more by visiting MiddlesexCountyCF.org or emailing us at info@MiddlesexCountyCF.org.


This article was previously published in June, 2015,  in both the Valley Courier and the Harbor News.

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