"Because every kid needs an opportunity."
The Opportunity 34 Scholarship Fund ("Opportunity 34") is intended to give kids a chance at furthering their education beyond high school. This scholarship seeks to help kids who, to this point in their life, maybe haven’t had the support system — relationships, financial or family support — that so many college-bound kids benefit from. Will Kellerman gravitated to kids like this. He wanted them to feel like they had a chance, like they were a part of a team. “Opportunity 34” gets its name from Will’s jersey number and his own opportunities. Tragically, Will passed away in a car accident on November 4, 2017, at the age of 21. But his purpose will live on.
Students at Verona High School (boys or girls) who play basketball for at least one year are eligible for a financial scholarship. The school will administer a simple application process. Applicants will be evaluated by a team consisting of school coaches and administrators. Opportunity 34 will be managed by Klaas Financial Asset Advisors in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. Will’s parents, Kristin & Brian Kellerman, will administer the fund allocation to scholarship recipients after being notified by the school.
Will’s perseverance was impressive, but it sometimes paled in comparison to the difficulties his friends and teammates were facing. His recognition of what others were dealing with became ingrained in his character. Our goal for Opportunity 34 is for it live on for many years to honor Will’s memory and his perseverance. This scholarship fund will be sustained long term by investing donations, then awarding the proceeds as financial scholarships. “Will never gave up.” That mentality drives Will’s parents now, and inspires this scholarship program for kids who need a lift. “He had opportunities,” Kristin said, “and every kid needs those opportunities.” In that way, Will has never really left the court.
Donations to the "Opportunity 34 Scholarship Fund" can be made online through the YouCaring website or by check. Checks can be made payable to Brian and/or Kristin Kellerman with "Opportunity 34" in the memo line and mailed to:
566 East View Road, Verona, WI 53593
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