A Philanthropy Story
Ed Austin: a Philanthropist and his Legacy
“Philanthropy” comes from the Greek word philanthropos (“lover of mankind”). According to the dictionary, it means “the effort or inclination to increase the well-being of mankind, as by charitable aid or donations.”
Ed Austin Naberhaus was a strong believer in enriching and improving the lives of others.
Before he passed away on November 30th, 2001 from complications of a brain tumor, he told his family he wanted to remember The Jones Center in his will.
Ed Austin visited The Jones Center just three times before he died at the age of 37. He lived in New Braunfels, Texas and worked at the Walmart Distribution Center there. He discovered The Jones Center when he attended Walmart’s annual shareholders meetings in Northwest Arkansas. His third and final trip to the Center was with his father, Edward Naberhaus, on their way to Cincinnati, OH to visit his grandmother. He told his dad, “I really want you to see this place.” Edward said, “My son was enamored that people could use this fabulous center for free. He thought people should really take advantage of the opportunity. He loved the ice skating!”
Ed Austin learned he had a brain tumor just two and a half years before his passing. He had undergone an initial operation to removed a tumor. Despite trying several experimental drugs, the tumor grew back. This time, covering both sides of his brain eventually affecting his motor & speech skills. His last days were spent in a wheel chair. Ed Austin told his dad that he wanted to have a will drawn up when doctors told him he did not have much time left. Edward said, “We took him to the attorney’s office. I was one of the witnesses. Ed Austin told me The Jones Center was a good thing and that he should put that in his will.”
Upon Ed Austin’s death, his father fulfilled his son’s wishes. He made a gift of $30,000 to the Center. “It really meant a lot to me that Mrs. Jones called me to personally thank us for Ed Austin’s gift, says Edward.”
Edward adds, “I am very glad I could help my son carry out his wishes. I am very happy he thought about making a planned gift to The Jones Center. We both really thought it was a wonderful facility for children & families. It just seemed like a real good idea.”
Ed Austin’s donation is a gift that will continue to thrive and help others for years to come. No matter what your wealth, anyone can be a philanthropist like Ed Austin.