PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation received the largest gift in its history recently when Fred Smith, founder and chairman of FedEx, donated $65 million — helping with post-high school studies for children of Marines and Navy Corpsmen.

Retired Lieutenant Colonel Ted Probert — who is also the current president and CEO of the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation — joined Everyday Northwest to share what this gift means for veterans and their families.

According to Probert, the foundation was created in 1962 after a World War II Medal of Honor recipient couldn’t afford to send his son to college, so families fundraised $15,000 for the family. Now, Probert says, the foundation gives away $185 million in scholarships – supporting more than 50,000 students.

“Our mission is to honor Marines by educating their children,” Probert said. “This gift from Fred Smith is truly transformative as we, right now, support about 12% of the applicable pool of applicants out there, so the other additional 88% is… where we hope to go, and this will provide hundreds of additional scholarships right out of the gate.”

Watch the video above to learn more about the foundation and its big screen ties to a movie in theaters.