Robert C. and Frank J. Lang Funds
Est. 2012 as a donor advised and scholarship fund, respectively.
This is the tale of two Valley brothers.
Robert C. and Frank J. Lang were born, raised, and lived their entire lives in Seymour. Both graduated from Seymour High School - Frank in 1957 and Bob in 1959. Bob then attended Southern CT State University, where he received a BS in Elementary Education in 1963, and an MS in 1968; Frank joined the Army in 1958, and later graduated with a degree in Elementary Education from Southern in 1966. Bob began his 36 year teaching career in Seymour's Center School, later moving to Chatfield School, where he taught fourth grade for an additional 34 years. Meanwhile, Frank worked in the Danbury office of Social Security.
Each brother found his respective passion - In the 1950's, Bob intently followed women's fast pitch softball, especially the Stratford "Brakettes" team, which led him to become one of the founding members of the George J. Hummel Little League girls' softball program in Seymour in 1973. Under his leadership, the program has become synonymous with softball excellence, racking up a total of 20 state championships, topped off by winning the girl's Big League Softball World Series in 2007. In the meantime, in his late 30's, Frank began to make some healthy lifestyle choices and took up running. He began to race competitively throughout Connecticut and beyond, charging up hills in Seymour with a determined sense of purpose. Frank ran until he became ill with cancer; even when his illness curtailed his major running program, he continued to walk until his illness prevented him from doing what he loved best.
After Frank's passing in 2011, Bob began to explore options to honor his brother's memory. Neither brother had married, so Bob began considering creating legal Trusts to support their respective interests in running and girl's softball. He had initial conversations with his financial advisor, Mark Powers, and then sat down with his tax consultant, John Zaprzalka, (then Vice Chair of VCF's Board of Directors). John shared information aboutVCF Funds- and soon it was clear to Bob that VCF was a good fit for him. "It was much easier than starting from scratch with a Trust, and it will do exactly what I wanted: to perpetuate the motto of Seymour Girl's Softball - a "Tradition of Excellence". Having the Robert C. Lang Fund atVCF allowed me to do just that. I was also able to work withVCF to create a Fund to support Frank's interest in running - the Frank J. Lang Fund to help a graduating Seymour High School senior, who ran cross country or track, to pursue his or her dream of attending college."
Each Fund will be used to help students in Seymour for years to come. "One of the best things about our softball program isn't about how many trophies we've won, but how we have taught young people how to play and work together," said Bob. " It's about making new friends, being part of a team, helping out in your community - great skills that they will take with them for the rest of their lives. Now I know that all of the Seymour Girl's Softball programs - Little League, Seymour Tradition, Seymour Middle and High School - will all have funding in the future, and that Frank's love for running will live on through scholarships for track team runners at Seymour High School. Having these Funds at VCF will provide ongoing support for all of our beloved "traditions of excellence" in Seymour."
Bob passed away on October 1, 2021, but his life - and the life of his brother Frank - will be remembered through their funds at VCF.