Hundreds came out on Sunday, April 24 to attend the Scholarship Dinner, which was also a tribute to a dedicated jazz supporter, Charles “Chuck” Deggans. Chuck was a columnist and a featured writer for the Gary Crusader Newspaper. He was also an avid jazz fan and record collector who enjoyed membership in the Greater Gary American Jazz Association (GGAJA), as well as, Chicago’s Jazz Unites and the Gang Ski & Travel Club.
The Maggie Brown Quintet was supposed to be the main entertainment at the Greater Gary American Jazz Association Dinner and Tribute. To the surprise and delight of attendees one of the scholarship recipients, Ebenezer Appiah demonstrated his talent on the saxophone and his worthiness for the music scholarship he was awarded. He will attend Indiana University in the fall. Equally outstanding was the second recipient, Ciddle Stewart, who sang a capella “His Eye Is On The Sparrow,” will attend Indiana State University.
The GGAJA, which already had a music scholarship, established a Journalism scholarship in honor of Chuck after his sudden death in February 2015. Chuck’s family and closest friends were their to support his wife and son as they accepted a plaque in his honor.