Josiah Oliver to receive 2018 Don Coin Walrod Memorial Scholarship to pursue forestry studies

A high school senior from Scappoose with his sights set on a future in forestry management was recently award a $1,000 scholarship to pursue higher education.

Josiah Oliver, a home-schooled senior who lives in Scappoose, was chosen as the 2018 Don Coin Walrod Memorial Scholarship recipient. The scholarship is administered by the Deer Island Grange.

The Don Coin Walrod Scholarship was established to honor and remember Walrod, a longtime grange member who was also known around the county for his involvement in the 4-H program.

"We established this scholarship in his honor as a way to remember him and honor him," Jani Remsburg, chairman of the scholarship program for the grange, said Tuesday. Remsburg was related to Walrod, who was an uncle in-law of hers before his death in the 1980s.

Rembsburg said the scholarship seeks to find students who exemplify "things [Don] would look for in a star student."

"Students have to be interested in education, agriculture, animal science or forestry," Remsburg said. This year, five students applied for the scholarship, including Oliver.

"Josiah is very involved in 4-H and sports events," Remsburg noted. "He's a good student. He's done a lot of leadership in 4-H and is very interested in giving back to his community, especially through 4-H. 4-H was very important to Don. He's looking at going into forestry which is one of the requirements."

Oliver plans to attend Portland Community College this fall.

Walrod's life continues to be remembered through the memorial scholarship.

"Don graduated from Colorado Agriculture and Mining College in 1941 with a degree in agriculture," scholarship application materials indicate. "After being a pilot in WWII, he returned to Colorado to start his career as an extension agent. In 1953, he moved to St. Helens and became the Columbia County Extension Chairman. He received his master's degree from Michigan State University in 1960 and was a dedicated advocate for agriculture and forestry until he retired in 1978."

Walrod later moved to Deer Island, where he successfully grew a bounty of fruits and vegetables, according to Remsburg.

Columbia County students interested in applying for the memorial scholarship next year can apply via a high school counselor as soon as Feb. 15, 2019.

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