“Bold, practical, committed and faithful,” are just a few of the words UST President Richard Ludwick would use to describe Carol and Odis Peavy, longtime friends and benefactors of the University of St. Thomas. “Though our community has deeply felt the loss of our beloved friends since their respective deaths in 2017 and 2020, Odis and Carol’s legacy will forever be known at the University.”
Odis, originally from Nacogdoches, moved to Houston and met Carol shortly thereafter, before they married in 1956. As they were beginning their own family, little did they know that the University of St. Thomas was already being woven into their stories. Carol had recently earned a nursing degree from Sacred Heart Dominican College whose nursing program later became part of UST. As Odis and Carol expanded their family to include three children, Kathy, Elizabeth and David, they were delighted when all three children chose to attend UST. Kathy earned her MBA in 1983, after graduating from Texas Woman’s University (TWU) in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and their late daughter Elizabeth graduating in 1980 with a BS in Biology prior to becoming a dentist. After her passing, the Peavys established a scholarship fund at UST in Elizabeth’s memory.
Carol’s passion grew through her work with the Associated Nursing Alumni, including serving several years as President of the Association. While Kathy was attending TWU Nursing School, Carol also received her Masters of Science in Nursing, achieving her dream of obtaining and advanced degree in nursing and becoming an nursing instructor. Carol officially joined UST as a proud member of the nursing school faculty from 1980-1982.
Shortly afterward, life brought them new adventures as Odis, Carol and David opened PV Rentals in 1983, a Houston-based car and truck rental service, where Carol and Odis worked side-by-side for many years. Despite being pulled in many directions, UST remained in their hearts, and after an economic downturn closed the nursing school in 1986, Carol vowed that one day she would help reestablish the program.
Through the years, Carol and Odis remained steadfast supporters of UST, serving on committees, including the University in annual giving plans and making major gifts to support the University’s programs and students. In 2008 Carol and Odis were able to make her dream of reestablishing the University’s nursing program a reality. With a substantial gift in 2008, followed by the largest gift in UST history in 2014 in support of the Center for Science and Health Professions, the University of St. Thomas subsequently recognized their immense generosity, renaming it as the Carol and Odis Peavy School of Nursing.
While Carol and Odis were able to experience the tremendous joy of seeing their dream brought to life before their passing, UST continues to feel their passion for the University today. With an even larger gift left through a simple bequest in their will, the Peavys continue to make a lasting impact.
“The University of St. Thomas has been woven into their story in a number of ways, and to become a written part of their history in their estate plans is a tremendous honor that we do not take lightly,” Ludwick says. “We are grateful to the Peavys for all the ways their legacy has impacted our University, and we feel fortunate that their faithfulness and passion will live on through generations of UST students.”
For more information on how to leave your legacy at the University of St. Thomas, please contact Director of Planned Giving Lorin Crater, CFRE at firstname.lastname@example.org.