As a young child, Mary, or Agnes or Aggie to her friends and family, showed signs of talent in music which was greatly encouraged by her parents. Piano was her first love and she started taking private lessons. She blossomed into an accomplished violinist and also learned to play the oboe and cornet. She graduated college with a music education degree. Mary taught private music lessons to youngsters,accompanied her students on piano,and performed in various bands and orchestras. Throughout her life, she never abandoned her love of music.
Mary Agnes Ridder Cherny died November 10, 2005 when the effects of cancer claimed her life. To honor her commitment to her family, vocation, and students, her family established the Mary Ridder Cherny Fund at the Community Foundation.
The Fund provides financial support to Quincy public and parochial schools for 6-8th grade students who want to participate in the performing arts. Proceeds from the fund may be used, but not limited, to provide funding for student talent or merit awards, to help deserving students cover costs of lessons, workshops, rental or for purchase of instruments, music, scripts or related items.
Requests for funding which meet the charitable purpose of the Mary Ridder Cherny Fund should be submitted online through the Community Foundation’s website. Completed Application Forms must be submitted to the Community Foundation in May each year. While funding is not dependent upon submitting the application form, the application serves as a means to make the Community Foundation aware of deserving programs and students.