Appreciation and Loyalty Culminate in a Lasting Legacy
Each year, Dr. Jack Hoover is moved beyond words while reading a letter from a recipient of the C. Dale Hoover Endowed Scholarship in Agronomy, named in honor of his father. "The letters I get are so outstanding," Jack says. "That kind of a reward you can't put a price on."
One letter he received was from Alicia Ann Evans, then a senior at MSU. She wrote, "As an agronomy major, I hope to use my appreciation and passion for land and food to contribute to agriculture, if only a fraction of the amount your father contributed during his lifetime."
It felt natural for Jack and his two brothers to fund a scholarship in honor of their father, who was chair of the agronomy department at Mississippi State for many years. "We all three loved our dad so much," Jack explains. "And he was very influential in our going to college."
Of course, there was no question which college they would attendthey grew up on campus and didn't want to go anywhere else. "It was just understood that I would go to Mississippi State," Jack says. And he wasn't disappointed. "The courses were so fine, and the professors so outstanding and stimulating."
After receiving his bachelor's degree in 1955, Jack went on to earn his medical degree from Tulane University and then entered the Navy, where he became a flight surgeon. He later completed his residency in obstetrics and gynecology, and set up practice in Pascagoula. He remains successful there, as a senior partner at Gulf Coast OB/GYN, practicing gynecology. In his career, he's proudly delivered more than 5,400 babies. In addition to completing school, serving in the Navy and developing a career, Jack found time to grow a family. He and his wife, Peggy, have three children: Jack Hoover Jr., Catherine Williford and Dr. Myrtle Hoover Delgado.
Through the years, Jack has always longed to pay back the university and help future students. In 1975, he took advantage of the ease of giving a life insurance policy and donated $25,000. More recently, the 76 year-old included Mississippi State in his will. Part of his gift will be added to his father's scholarship; the rest will be combined with his life insurance gift to establish the Jack C. Hoover Endowed Scholarship in Premed.