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Gifts for the Future

A passion for nature inspires Tien and Pei Wu to travel and include The Nature Conservancy in their estate plans.

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Tien and Pei Wu Tien and Pei Wu © Courtesy of Tien and Pei Wu

Tien and Pei Wu

Last fall, Tien and Pei Wu took their first Legacy Journey. Retired and in their 90s, the former civil engineering professor and high school chemistry teacher, both Ph.D.s, traveled along the Blue Ridge Parkway at the peak of fall foliage. The trip may have been their first with The Nature Conservancy, but it marked one of many excursions inspired by a love for nature.

“Not long after we moved to the U.S. from China as graduate students in the late 1940s, we learned about how several conservation organizations were opposing a proposed dam in the Grand Canyon,” says Tien. “We donated $10 and were relieved to learn that the dam proposal had been defeated.”

Forty years later, they hiked the Grand Canyon. Tien says, “I was constantly thinking that, had it not been for the conservation organizations, the trip would not be possible. The same holds for when we hiked in the great national parks in Alaska.”

Wilderness gives us so much in the way of quality of life and spiritual well-being that we have to give back so that the next generation can appreciate it.

As a result of their experiences, Tien and Pei have become regular contributors to The Nature Conservancy and joined The Legacy Club by making a a gift in their will to the Conservancy. Most recently they donated a conservation easement on their property located near the Conservancy’s Big Darby Headwaters Nature Preserve in Ohio, where they reside.

According to fellow travelers on the recent Legacy Journey, Tien and Pei tapped into their science backgrounds to weigh in on discussions about biology, plant life, geology and chemistry.

“They asked great questions of the guides and served as an important resource for other guests,” says Meg Thomson, the Conservancy’s Legacy Club manager.

Tien says, “Wilderness gives us so much in the way of quality of life and spiritual well-being that we have to give back so that the next generation can appreciate it.”

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