A memorial scholarship has been created to honor Nathan Ray, a Fresno State freshman who was killed in a car accident Sept. 5.
The Nathan Ray Memorial Scholarship will be a $1,000 award given annually to as many students as funds will allow, said Robert Wulf, who created the scholarship.
The scholarship will be awarded to Sierra High School students who are declared music majors entering college in the same calendar year as their high school graduation. Wulf said the scholarship requirements reflect Ray’s accomplishments in high school and his aspiration to become a music teacher.
Wulf said he started the scholarship because he hopes it will encourage people to remember Ray’s compassion and consideration for the people around him.
“Nathan was a special individual,” Wulf said. “He just had this thing about him that cheered people up.”
Justin Allan, who befriended Ray in the fourth grade, said he was constantly impressed by Ray’s genuine love for people and his desire to excel in both school and music.
“He was very kind and very intelligent,” Allan said.
He said he hopes the scholarship will help other students accomplish their dreams, while carrying on Ray’s love for music and people.
“This will give other people the opportunity to live out what Nathan wanted to do with his life,” Allan said.
Likewise, Matthew Sanchez, a sophomore at Fresno State, said he was pleased that the scholarship was created because it will help people remember Ray and his enthusiasm for music. Sanchez only knew Ray for three weeks, but said he was immediately struck by how hard Ray worked.
“He always strove to be the best he could be,” Sanchez said.
He said Ray was an inspiration to many people because he was kind to everyone and was willing to help out complete strangers.
Sanchez said the tuba section donated $140 to the scholarship after collecting donations during the band’s memorial for Ray on Sept. 6.
All donations are tax deductible and should indicate that they are for the Nathan Ray Memorial Scholarship. Checks made payable to Sierra High School Scholarship Foundation can be sent to Nathan Ray Memorial Scholarship c/o Sierra High School Scholarship Foundation 31625 Lodge Road Auberry, CA 93602.