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Adam J. Holland


Long-time La Porte resident Glynda Oliver’s idea for contributing toward college scholarships all began when her daughter experienced a leg injury. Oliver told her, “You need a walking stick,” and then cut a branch from a crepe myrtle tree in her yard to make one for her.

Oliver, a former La Porte ISD substitute teacher and PTO president, just happened to have all the supplies for finishing the walking stick, including a rubber stopper, sandpaper, and stain. With the first one finished, she continued to make them, and she felt “that I was supposed to gift the walking sticks to those who have a need,” she said. She kept some in her car so that when she saw people who might enjoy a walking stick, she gave them one.

On a visit to Natchez, Mississippi, in late 2022, Oliver saw that displays of items made by local citizens were on display at the Chamber of Commerce. When she arrived home, she approached La Porte-Bayshore Chamber of Commerce President Jeff Martin to ask if her walking stick program could become part of the Chamber scholarship program.

Her walking sticks are now on display at the Chamber as well as two other La Porte businesses—RE/MAX Excellence, Ed’s Bistro—and the La Porte ISD Administration Building for a suggested donation of $30. Oliver loves that the walking stick program demonstrates the support of so many wonderful people in La Porte—from those who planted the crepe myrtle trees, to those who allow her to cut a branch from them, to those who make a donation to take a walking stick home.

Donations so far have totaled $2,000, and Oliver recently presented a check to the Chamber for its scholarship program for La Porte ISD students. It’s her way to make a difference in the community she loves.

“We can’t all do big things, but we can do something,” she says.