(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) — The parents of University of Virginia student Hannah Graham, who was found dead after she went missing in September, are launching an award in her honor at the Charlottesville, Virginia, college.
The 18-year-old sophomore disappeared Sept. 13, and more than a month later, her remains were found in a field about 10 miles from Charlottesville. Jesse Matthew Jr. has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with Graham’s death.
At a launch event for the memorial award, Graham’s father John Graham spoke to a crowd of friends, faculty and administrators as he expressed hope that the award could represent everything his daughter wanted to achieve, according to a UVA news release issued Friday.
The award will benefit students who share Graham’s passions, including French culture, global health and service work, according to the release.
The first recipient will get $10,000 for his or her commitment to participate in two semesters of related coursework at UVA and at least eight weeks of field work in a French-speaking developing country, the news release says.
“Hannah loved UVA, she loved Charlottesville and she would be honored I think to know this work is going to moving forward in her memory,” her mother Sue Graham said, according to ABC affiliate WIRC-TV in Richmond.
The money is provided by the Hannah Graham Memorial Fund, which was established by the university last year and is supported by the Grahams and their family, according to the UVA news release. The award money could go to more than one student as funding increases, the news release said.
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