“I wanted to honor my late wife, and I wanted her memory to live on. It's a great feeling to make WT's exceptional education possible for a deserving student, and to honor Connie at the same time.”
“Connie was remarkable,” recalls Sheldon Marstine of his wife Constance (Connie) Blum Marstine ’55, who died in 2008 at the age of 70. “She was extraordinarily funny and bright, an excellent cook and gardener, a wonderful wife and mother. Her education was superior, and she was always loyal to Winchester Thurston.”
The Marstines were married for 49 years. To honor the memory of his beloved wife, who was an active volunteer in the WT community for many years, Marstine established the Connie Blum Marstine Scholarship Fund with a generous gift to Winchester Thurston School's Endowment Fund. The gift has funded an annual scholarship for a student who demonstrates high academic achievement, intellectual curiosity, a passion for learning, and who would not otherwise be able to afford a Winchester Thurston education.
"I did it for a number of reasons," explains Marstine. "I've always believed that Winchester Thurston provides an outstanding education. I wanted to honor my late wife, and I wanted her memory to live on. It's a great feeling to make WT's exceptional education possible for a deserving student, and to honor Connie at the same time," says Marstine.
The fund also celebrates the multiple generations of Marstines who have attended WT. It memorializes Connie's mother, Winchester Thurston Alumna Eleanor Dreyfus Goodman ‘29, and honors the Marstines' daughter, Winchester Thurston Alumna Janet Marstine Polishook '77, founder of the Institute of Museum Ethics and Assistant Professor at Seton Hall University in New Jersey. "Janet is very prominent in her field," says Marstine proudly. "She's carved out a niche for herself in museum ethics, and traces her passion for art directly to WT and to [now retired WT art history teacher] Ann Peterson."
Marstine and Polishook have worked with the school to select the Connie Blum Marstine Scholar each year; currently there are two Marstine Scholars in the Upper School.
The Connie Blum Marstine Scholarship Fund is a significant addition to the WT Endowment Fund. It is also a lasting legacy that links the past, present, and future. It speaks to the value of education and the power of love. "I was very fortunate to have Connie," smiles Marstine, "and I'm fortunate to be able to create this scholarship in her honor. Connie loved WT, and she loved children. I think she would have liked this."