The 2018 Ben and Gloria Tucker Scholarship Recipients. From left to right, Rose A. Moss (Effingham County High), John Griffin (The Griffin Home Academy), and Leroy Parker, Jr. (Herschel V. Jenkins High School).

2018 Ben and Gloria Tucker Scholarship Recipients: Turning a Tragedy into a Tribute

Friends of Ben, Inc. (FOB). Board of Trustees is excited to announce the 2018 Ben and Gloria Tucker Scholarship recipients: Rose Moss Effingham County High School graduate attending Virginia Technical College, Virginia, majoring in Interior Design and Project Management; John Griffin – The Griffin Home Academy graduate with honors attending Mississippi State University, majoring in Aerospace Engineering with a Minor in Music; and Leroy Parker, Jr. – Jenkins High School graduate attending Morehouse College, Atlanta, majoring in Aeronautical Science.


This scholarship is awarded to local high school seniors who excel academically and who model Musician and humanitarian, Ben Tucker & and his wife, Gloria’s core values – resilience, generosity, creativity, kindness, integrity, trustworthiness, and volunteerism in their everyday lives. The scholarship was originally named “The Links to Success” in honor of Ben for his affiliation with First Tee-Savannah, a national youth development program that uses golf to teach life-skills and nine core values (honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, perseverance, confidence, responsibility, courtesy and judgment); all which succinctly align with Ben and Gloria’s core values and were/are exhibited through music, advocacy, service, and educational activities.


Upon the unfortunate closing of First Tee of Savannah, on May 10, 2018, the FOB Board voted to continue the scholarship and officially rename it, The Ben & Gloria Tucker Scholarship. These 3 scholarship recipients have passionately displayed both Ben and Gloria’s and First Tee’s core values through their activities in community service, extra-curriculum activities, volunteerism and academic achievements. Rose Moss is a dedicated member of several organizations that espouse the importance of community. Giving back is at the core of this young lady’s being. During all of her academic obligations and personal pursuits, Rose has managed to remain gainfully employed in the Interior Design division at Gulfstream Aerospace.


John Griffin remembered meeting Ben when they played golf together at The First Tee. “After our first day of playing together, I felt like I’d known Coach Ben for years. Coach Ben inspired me in countless ways but what inspired me most was not that he loved golf or music, but that both he and his wife Gloria loved people the most! Coach Ben didn’t just show me how to be a good golfer; he demonstrated how to be a great person. He used his extraordinary gifts to show his love to others, even me, a 10-yearold beginner golfer.”


“Leroy Parker is an outstanding peer leader,” comments his High School English instructor, Mrs. Feldmann. “In and out of the classroom, Leroy is just a great person to know. He’s got a tremendous innate kindness that radiates and touches everyone around him; he’s a kid with a heart who sincerely cares enough to leave the world and those around him better off for having been a part of their lives. He’s reliable, involved, brilliant, and intellectually curious. Remarkably, with all these qualities, Leroy is humble. He exudes a quiet confidence that serves to make him that much more impressive.”


Ben and his wife of 47 years were a dynamic couple who dedicated their lives to each other and their love for the Savannah community. Mrs. Gloria Tucker worked for the Savannah Chatham Public School District for 20 years. She explained, “Young people don’t care how much you know, they want to know how much you care.” Barbara Essig, Pres. of FOB, shared, “each of us has a limited time here to do good work. It’s important that we spend this time wisely to share our talents as a gift with others. Like the Tuckers, share your talents as an act of kindness quickly. This is the lesson I have learned from Ben & Gloria Tucker. They shared their kindness with so many others. Through this scholarship and other good works, Gloria honors her husband’s legacy.