Bucher Family Fund

TYPE OF FUND:                      Donor Advised

DATE ESTABLISHED:            October 15, 2015     APPROVED:  October 21, 2015 

PURPOSE:  To support initiatives that promote community development, health, gardening, use of natural resources, alternate energy, historical preservation and spirituality. 

DISTRIBUTION:  On the recommendation of the donors and final approval by the Grants Committee and Board of Directors of TCF.    

GEOGRAPHICAL AREA:  Randolph, Tucker, Pendleton, & Barbour Counties 

VARIANCE POWER:  If, in the judgment of the TCF Board of Directors, the restrictions and conditions of the fund become unnecessary, incapable of fulfillment or inconsistent with the charitable needs of the community, the TCF Board of Directors maintains the right to modify the terms of this fund.

FUNDING:  $20,000 initial funding by the children of Samuel and Margaret Bucher (step children of Kathryn Bucher):  Sarah Ellen (Herb) Myers, Jonathan (Esther) Bucher, Mary Beth (Lester) Lind, Dan (Judy) Bucher.  The Bucher Family recognizes that many people share the interests and values identified in the fund purpose and invite others to support those initiatives by contributing to this fund.  

BACKGROUND:  In 1946, Samuel Jacob and Margaret Mae Mininger Bucher, a young doctor and nurse, left the familiarity of their home community in southeastern Pennsylvania to move to Harman, WV.

At that time, during WWII, this area of WV was without a doctor and was considered a “national  medical emergency” area.  The Buchers, who were pacifists (choosing public service rather than military service), wanted to practice medicine in an area of need.  So to Harman, WV they came and stayed.  They practiced medicine, raised a family, became pillars of their community and thrived in the sheer beauty of the mountains and the Appalachian culture.”

Dr. Bucher’s medical work spanned 44 years (1946-1990). He delivered over fifteen hundred babies in those years. In the early years he made many house calls. For many years the “Mountain Clinic” provided in-patient rooms for obstetrical patients.  While his primary clinic and office were located in Harman he also opened branch offices in Riverton and Davis.  During the years many nurses served with Dr. Bucher in the medical work. After his first wife, Margaret died in 1987; he married Kathryn Ellen Hostetter, a nurse that had worked with Samuel and Margaret for over thirty years.  Kathryn was also well-known and loved by the community.

Samuel and Margaret were the parents of 4 children. Sarah Ellen and husband Dr. Herbert E Myers have three daughters, Karen Lynne, Brenda Ivonne and Susan Janelle, and 7 grandchildren (one deceased). Samuel Jonathan and wife Esther Marie Shank have two children, Anthony David and Bonnie Kay, and 4 grandchildren. Mary Beth and husband Lester Lee Lind, and Joseph Daniel and wife Judy Marie Pierantoni have two sons Luke Daniel and Jason Louis and 3 grandchildren.

Samuel and Margaret were deeply involved in their community. In addition to serving the medical needs of the community they both served in many capacities in the local Mennonite church and in the community. Margaret was one of the founders of the Pioneer Memorial Library in Harman. In 1964, seeing the value of local crafts and wanting to preserve them, she opened The Old Mill to the public for tours.  This water powered grist mill served as a venue for selling and supporting local crafts. She brought master crafts persons to The Old Mill for weekend workshops. She learned to weave and promoted weaving classes.

The natural beauty surrounding them in West Virginia was a constant pleasure for the Buchers which they enjoyed sharing with family and friends. Making many house calls during the early years of medical practice familiarized Dr. Bucher with very remote places. Family and friends remember many delightful “truck trips”. Piling into the back of a pick-up truck driven by Doc with a hearty picnic lunch prepared by Margaret often from the bounty of her garden, we’d go exploring.

Samuel and Margaret were innovative and creative each in their own way. Samuel liked to experiment with alternative energy especially water power.  He was also one of the first in the area to use 2-way radios to enhance communication which enabled more efficiency in his medical practice.   For Margaret, her garden (as well as her craft work) was her creative and generative outlet. She tried growing something new every year and she also saved and preserved the heritage seeds of the area.

As children of Samuel and Margaret, we have established this fund to honor the legacy of our parents and in some way continue their work in community development, health, gardening, use of natural resources, alternate energy, historical preservation, and spiritually.

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