News Marquette Nurse
Leading the way Gift supports advances in veteran care By Andrea Petrie A $1.1 million estate gift to the College of Nursing from the late Lawrence W. Scheffner and his late wife Sophie is supporting nursing research and programs that advance veteran and military care. At 21, Scheffner, Nurs ’52, Grad ’53, entered the Alexian Brothers School of Nursing in St. Louis. After passing the examination required by the Missouri State Board of Nurse Examiners, he was appointed a Red Cross nurse in 1944. During his time with the Red Cross, Larry enrolled at Marquette and took courses at Marquette and Carroll University in Waukesha, Wis. In 1945, he entered the U.S. Army as a surgical technician, serving in the European Theater of Operations until he was demobilized in October 1946. After climbing the Army ranks to assistant director of nurses, Larry married Sophie — a comptometer, or mechanical calculator operator — in 1953. Larry received a commission in the Army Medical Service Corps in 1956, serving in several U.S. and European locations and becoming the first male nurse to attain the rank of colonel, an accomplishment about which he was exceedingly proud. He retired from active duty on Jan. 1, 1981, after giving 35 years of service to his country. He passed away in March 1997, and Sophie passed away in January 2014. Sophie and Larry Scheffner left the college $1.1 million to support the development of science to advance military personnel and veteran care. He was the first male nurse to attain the rank of colonel in the U.S. Army.