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K-State Today

April 1, 2015

K-State grad's life honored through gifts to Center for Child Development, Welcome Center

Submitted by Hayli Morrison

As a young child in the early 1980s, Jason Hager watched his dad earn a Kansas State University accounting degree in three years while working full time at a community grocery store.

"That's just unheard of," he said of his father, who died in 2011. "From my earliest memories, he worked really hard."

Now, his father's memory will live on at the university he loved through a gift from his family. The gift will name a window in John Hager's honor inside the Berney Family Welcome Center, currently under construction. The gift also will establish the John R. Hager Childcare Fund, providing assistance with child care costs for K-State students with children enrolled in the K-State Center for Child Development.

"I think he wanted to help out other young student parents who are in the same situation he was in," Jason Hager said.

John Hager also had a lifelong passion for K-State, according to his sister, Stacey Hager Irwin. He named his dog "Bishop" in honor of former football quarterback Michael Bishop, and one of his most treasured moments was getting to meet Coach Bill Snyder.

"He believed in the university that helped create the man he was," Irwin said. "As John's family, we hope his legacy lives on in the students' lives these gifts touch and that the Kansas State tradition continues."