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Old couple sells home to give 1.6m yuan to college

By Zhao Wen   (Shanghai Daily)

13:09, June 27, 2013

Sui Zhongquan, 95, and his wife, Zhu Erchun, 89, yesterday attend a ceremony marking their donation. The couple sold their home and gave over half the money to a local college.

An elderly couple has sold their downtown apartment and donated 1.6 million (US$260,320) yuan - more than half the sale proceeds - to a local college toward construction of a covered walkway with stones carved with famous inspirational sayings.

Sui Zhongquan, 95, and his wife, Zhu Erchun, 89, were granted a donation certificate yesterday by the Shanghai Institute of Technology at their new home, the Cherish-Yearn retirement community in the Pudong New Area.

"Society has given a lot to us. Putting aside the necessary money to guarantee our living, we think we should use the rest of our savings to do something meaningful, like education," said Zhu, a retired English teacher of the institute, Jiefang Daily reported.

The couple moved into the retirement home after selling their 87-square-meter apartment on Wukang Road in Xuhui District for about 3 million yuan six months ago. The rest of the money will be used for their care - their only child died.

The couple learned about the school's plans for the cultural landscaping and walkway from a teacher who regularly visited them.

The walkway would connect campus buildings, and the couple said they hoped it would help students build the right values at an early age and engage spiritually with great minds.

Zhu also said she used to see students who forgot umbrellas walk in the rain and the couple hoped the sheltered walkway would help keep them well, she told Jiefang Daily.

She said she started thinking of selling the apartment and moving into an elder-care center about two years ago, but her husband didn't agree at the time. Since then, the couple has had health problems.

Zhu said they hope to see the donation turn into something meaningful before they pass away, but they also asked the school not to name any donation after them.

This is the seventh donation the couple have made. They had given over 400,000 yuan for scholarships, fellowships, student loans and charity projects.

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