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Autry's Widow, Baseball Officials Make Gift to USC

March 16, 2000

LOS ANGELES — Cowboy film legend Gene Autry's name will live on at the University of Southern California, thanks to a $300,000 gift to the School of Cinema-Television from his widow and Major League Baseball.

The money will be used to create the Gene Autry Endowed Student Support Fund, which will assist students with tuition and fees in the form of scholarships and fellowships, Dean Elizabeth Daley from USC's school of cinema-television said.

"Gene Autry left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment," said baseball Commissioner Alan H. "Bud" Selig. "We regard him as a legend who dared to make a real difference for millions of people and are proud to continue his legacy at USC."

Autry's career spanned some 60 years in the entertainment industry, encompassing radio, records, motion pictures, television, rodeo and live performances. Autry also became the owner of the American League's California Angels.

"Gene regarded his responsibility as a positive role model for America's youth with total devotion," said Autry's widow, Jackie. "The Gene Autry Endowed Student Support Fund allows Gene's legacy to perpetuate his commitment and continue to influence the future of USC's students through this contribution to their education."

Autry died Oct. 2, 1998, at 91. He cut more than 600 records including "Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer" and his signature "Back in the Saddle Again."

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