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Press Release

The Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund Announces Abby Fund Scholarship Recipient

The Abby Fund and the Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund (CCSF) are pleased to announce that the Abby Memorial Scholarship, established in memory of Concord-Carlisle High School Class of 2006 graduate Abdirauf (“Abby”) Abdullahi (1987-2006), has been awarded for the first time to graduating CCHS METCO senior Edward Akubude.

Son of Somalian refugees, Abby was a peace-loving, quiet leader at CCHS.  Through extraordinary effort, Abby excelled in high school and won a full scholarship to college to start in the fall of 2006 to pursue his dreams. Tragically, that summer Abby was shot and killed in a case of mistaken identity and urban violence.

Inspired by the life and death of their high school peer, a group of CCHS alumni established the Abby Fund, a community organization made up of volunteers dedicated to Metropolitan Council for Educational Opportunity (METCO) student success in Concord.  Upon graduating from college in 2008, these CCHS alumni came together to fundraise in Abby’s memory.  Five years of effort, including a seed grant from NYU upon the graduation of Abby President Danae Laura (CCHS ’04), benefit performances and concerts, basketball games, and “Abby Day” at Debra’s Natural Gourmet in Concord that has given 5% of all sales back to support the initiative, have all brought them to this moment of announcing the first Abby Memorial Scholarship award.  Their fundraising continues on June 27 from 7 to 9 p.m. with an Alumni Basketball game at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston; tickets will be available at the door.

Remembering Abby as a successful METCO student, high school graduate, and college scholarship recipient, the Abby Fund Board decided to honor him by encouraging METCO students to follow his example of taking advantage of the opportunities offered to them. The Abby Fund established the need-based Abby Memorial Scholarship under the CCSF, to be awarded annually to a METCO student graduating from CCHS who combines an ethic of hard work with community involvement, aspiration and everyday activism.

Edward Akubude, the inaugural recipient of the Abby Memorial Scholarship, embodies the spirit behind the Scholarship.  Edward participated in a broad range of activities at CCHS including playing four sports, crowning his experience as captain of the varsity football team. He worked hard as a METCO POWER program peer leader, and volunteered on weekends as a math tutor in the Boston Public Schools Saturday School Program.  Edward will attend Bowdoin College to study biology to pursue a career in medicine. Charisse Gilmer (CCHS ’04), director of communications for the Abby Fund, said, Edward is truly the perfect example of an Abby Memorial Scholar: a young man with a great work ethic matched by the perfect attitude.”