USC professor: Sheheen tried to make SC a better place

Published: Jun. 8, 2016 at 12:29 AM EDT|Updated: Jun. 8, 2016 at 12:38 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Fred Sheheen had a wide range of experiences and passions.

The father of state Senator Vincent Sheheen once served under former Governor and Senator Don Russell. The Duke and Harvard alum led the Commission on Higher Education for 10 years. Most recently, Sheheen worked with the University of South Carolina's Institute for Public Service and Policy Research.

There, he supervised the publication of an extensive analysis on the impact on the landmark Brown v. Board of Education ruling on segregation in South Carolina public school.

Now that Sheheen has passed, his colleague and friend Bob Oldendick said his passing leaves a substantial gap at USC and around the state.

"One of the things I think that Fred's loss will bring, that he always tried to make the state better today than it was yesterday," Oldendick said. "Whether it was in the area of education or civil rights or getting funding for arts activities or just general public policy issues, it was obvious I think that he deeply loved this state and he wanted to make it a better place."

Oldendick said Sheheen was well aware South Carolina colleges had not made enough progress on issues like minority enrollment or fixing shortcomings in poor rural schools.

The funeral service for Fred Sheheen is scheduled for noon Thursday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Camden with burial at Quaker Cemetery. The family will receive visitors at their home Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Memorials can be made to the following:

The Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County, located at 810 Lyttleton St., Camden, SC 29020

The American Cancer Society, c/o Gail Kirkland, 647 Lachicotte Road, Lugoff, SC 29078

Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church, 1709 Lyttleton St., Camden, SC 29020

Columbia City Ballet, 1545 Main St., Columbia, SC 29201

Allen University, 1530 Harden St., Columbia, SC 29204

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