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Harry B. Adreon Continues His Wife's Legacy Through a Scholarship

Harry Adreon smilingHarry Adreon grew up at the corner of Gates and Colley avenues in Norfolk. With his father working at H.B. Gilpin Company, a wholesale pharmaceutical company, it wasn't surprising that, as a student at Maury High School, Harry was attracted to young Beatrice "Bea" Rice, who planned to become a pharmacist.

Following high school, Harry enrolled in the Norfolk Division of William & Mary, now ODU, and Bea went to Mary Washington College to major in chemistry. The two continued to date long-distance. Immediately after graduating from ODU, Harry enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve as a private and spent the summer in weekly drills at the Amphibious Base at Little Creek.

In the fall, Harry moved to Blacksburg to study architecture at VPI, now Virginia Tech. He received his undergraduate degree in1950 and stayed on to complete his master's degree in 1952. Meanwhile, Bea graduated from MWC and moved to Richmond to begin pharmacy school at the Medical College of Virginia, one of only four women in a class of 85—a staggering, but common, ratio at the time.

With his master's degree in hand, Harry entered the Marine Corps' Officer Candidates School in Quantico, and that December, with school finally behind them, Harry and Bea were married at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Norfolk.

Harry Adreon youngFollowing Harry's discharge as a Marine captain, the Adreons bought a house in Alexandria, where Harry began his career as an architect, specializing in medical buildings and nursing homes. Although warned at graduation that most companies wouldn't employ a professional woman, Bea worked as a pharmacist at the Washington Clinic, a private diagnostic and clinical center, for the next 18 years.

Their lives were happy, especially during the many weekends spent at their cottage at Calvert Cliffs, Md., where they enjoyed sailing on the Chesapeake Bay.

Though her own career was going well, in the early 1970s, Bea felt a need to do more for her clients than fill their prescriptions. Many were confused about their prescription drugs and the possible interactions among them and between them and over-the-counter drugs. While she wanted to continue her work as a pharmacist, she also saw a need to offer counseling, something pharmacists were not allowed to do. Determined to expand her role, Bea enrolled at George Washington University, where she earned a master's degree in special studies, with concentrations in counseling, management sciences, and women's studies. After her graduation in 1976, she was invited to stay as a consultant, counselor and teacher in the medical school's gerontology program.

Still unable to offer the combined services of a pharmacist and counselor, though, Bea launched her own business, Pharmacy Counseling Services Inc. Testing a hunch, she offered her services free to elderly neighbors who needed help reviewing their medications, and she saw her patients return again and again-willing to pay for her services. As her business grew, she moved into an office and consultation space at Harry's firm and acquired a long client list of individuals, universities and long-term care facilities.

In early 2005, Bea began to suffer from weakness and shortness of breath, symptoms of atrial fibrillation that eventually led to congestive heart failure. Sadly, her life was cut short.

To honor Bea's memory, Harry included ODU in his will, with a gift to establish The Beatrice Rice Adreon Endowed Scholarship for Pre-Pharmacy Studies. The scholarship will be awarded to students who share Beatrice's passion for pharmacy as a science and her commitment to helping people live the healthiest lives possible. Wanting to do still more, Harry has already begun to fund the scholarship. He looks forward to meeting Beatrice Adreon Scholars, as a link back to his beloved wife, Bea.

Today, most pharmacies offer private areas where pharmacists can consult freely with their clients. From her early days as a rare female pharmacy student to her later career as a consultant in prescription services, Bea was a vanguard in opening the field of pharmacy to women and in expanding the pharmacist's role beyond simply filling prescriptions. What a splendid model she has left for the Beatrice Rice Adreon Scholars to follow—and what a loving tribute Harry has made through this scholarship!


A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Old Dominion University a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

Bequest Language

"I, [name], of [city, state, zip] hereby give, devise and bequeath to Old Dominion University's Educational Foundation [or to Old Dominion University's Athletic Foundation], 4417 Monarch Way, Norfolk, VA 23529, a tax exempt organization, free of encumbrance, [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purposes."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to ODU or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the gift tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to ODU as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to ODU as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and ODU where you agree to make a gift to ODU and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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