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Good Sense

Good Sense

Eddie Fite (63C) knows a good thing when he sees it.

The Dalton, Ga., native still recalls the day in the summer of 1960 when he looked across Ford Dining Hall and saw freshman Rosa Nutt (64C) standing in line. He mentioned her to a friend who, as luck would have it, was from the same South Georgia town of Vienna as the fetching new arrival. Taking advantage of the opportune connection, Eddie moved quickly to head off other potential suitors, noting, "After just a couple of weeks I already had her off to the side."

His instincts proved correct, as that first spark of interest grew into a lifelong love affair. Married in 1965, Eddie and Rosa built a life together. He enjoyed success as an accountant, she as a middle school math and science teacher, all while raising two sons.

"It was just a perfect, perfect match," Eddie declared.

A half-century later, the good sense that first brought the couple together has paid dividends again, this time leading them to invest in a charitable gift annuity that has increased their own financial security while also creating a legacy of support for future Berry students.

"I had started looking at annuities because the interest rate environment is just not good right now," Eddie explained. "We decided that it would be a win-win to do something that would help Berry out too. The rate you get on the money is great."

The charitable gift annuity established by Eddie and Rosa creates a guaranteed income stream for life with an interest rate of 4.7 percent (determined by the donor's age at the time an annuity is established). After their deaths, the balance will pass to Berry to provide funding for scholarships established by their 50th reunion classes.

"In a money market account or a checking account, you may get one-tenth of 1 percent on your money right now," Eddie related. "When you compare that to the 4.7 percent we're getting on our annuity, it doesn't take a genius to figure out which is best."

As they celebrated the golden anniversary of their college graduations with service on their 50th reunion committees, the Fites were keenly aware of the difference Berry made in their lives. Thinking back on those experiences, they are pleased to make similar opportunities available for future students.

"We took a lot away from Berry, we really did," Eddie said, referring to lifelong friendships, valuable work experiences, good values and, of course, each other. "With all those things we took with us – you do want to give back."


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