Last summer, Ken and Mary Cadden of Richmond, Virginia, suffered a tragic loss when their son, Samuel, was killed in an automobile accident.
Sam, a student at Clemson University, was 21 when he died, and he had told family and friends that one day, he wanted to have a building on the college's campus named in his honor.
With a $1.5 million gift, Ken and Mary Cadden are making that wish come true for their son. The Caddens' gift will be used to help fund the construction of a chapel on the Clemson campus that will be named for Sam.
“Sam’s life was a reflection of his strong faith in God and his love for friends and family," the Caddens said. "We could think of no better way to honor him.”
The Samuel J. Cadden Chapel will be situated in the middle of the Clemson campus and will be surrounded by gardens.
Sam was a junior at Clemson, majoring in financial management. Sam was a member of the finance council at St. Andrews Catholic Church in Clemson, was employed at M.H. Frank Men's Shop and had interned for U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and at the Terminus Group at Morgan Stanley. He was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity and was also active with the Knights of Columbus.
“Being a parent is a blessing, and our children are precious gifts,” Clemson University President James Clements said. “We thank Ken and Mary Cadden for celebrating Sam’s life in a way that will touch the hearts and lift the spirits of generations of future Clemson students."
The total cost for the chapel project is $6 million.
“We, as a committee, have imagined this day for a long time, and we could not be more thankful to the Cadden family and also to the Clemson family,” Meredith Wingate, leader of the student group working on the chapel project, said. "This proposed place on campus will not only be a place of remembrance, but also of celebration and jubilee."