Check for $42,000 presented to OU Foundation.
A University of Oklahoma ballerina’s memory continues to live on thanks to a scholarship that supports aspiring dancers.
Cleveland Sheriff Joe Lester presented a check for $42,343.66 to the University of Oklahoma Foundation on Monday. The amount will be earmarked towards the Juli Busken Memorial Scholarship.
The funds were raised through the Juli Busken Memorial Scholarship Tournament sponsored by Lester in June.
The scholarship honors Busken, who was kidnapped from her Norman apartment in December of 1996 and brutally slain. Busken, a student-ballerina, completed her senior year at University of Oklahoma a few days prior to her death.
OU senior Sydney Gettel received the scholarship for the academic year. Gettel studies ballet at OU’s School of Dance.
“I’m grateful for the help and that people are willing to support students who attend OU,” Gettel said.
Busken’s parents, Bud and Mary Jean Busken, attended Monday’s presentation.
“We’re so excited about Sheriff Lester raising $42,000 for Juli’s scholarship fund,” Bud Busken said. “Thank you to the community that continues to support and remember Juli.”
Sheriff Joe Lester served as OU’s police chief when Busken was murdered. Lester said he became friends with Busken’s family during the homicide investigation and remains close with them today.
“This scholarship allows the opportunity to honor Juli and keep her memory alive in the community,” Lester said. “Student dancers have the chance to complete their education with help from this scholarship.”
Any questions regarding this press release and/or information can be addressed to Meghan McCormick, Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office, community liaison/public information officer. McCormick can be reached at (405) 701-8847.