On January 24, 2014, Ennis ISD was notified that Major Willie J Kucera had donated several properties to the district to be used for future scholarships to graduating EHS seniors. After encountering many obstacles, Ennis ISD now owns these properties. After the first of the year, Ennis ISD will be selling these properties to honor Mr. Kucera’s requests.
Major Willie J. Kucera (July 28, 1905 – August 27, 2012) was a long time military man from Ennis, Texas that truly believed in service. He attended Ennis ISD public schools as a child and was a faithful alumni of Ennis High School throughout his life. Major Kucera was recruited into the U.S. Army in 1942 to assist in managing the Army Post Exchange, now known as the Army and Air Force Exchange Services. Due to the retail experience he obtained from working in his father’s general store, Willie was commissioned as a first Lieutenant. Major Kucera served in Germany, Italy, and Korea during his career in the military and retired in 1962, and took residence in El Paso, Texas. On Willie’s 100th birthday, July 28, 2005, the City of El Paso declared that day “Willie Kucera Day” in his honor. Prior to his death, efforts were underway to have the fountain in the center of Freedom Crossing at Fort Bliss named in honor of Major Kucera. Major Kucera was married to his wife Cecilia for 70 years. While Major Kucera served his country in the military, Mrs. Kucera taught school at each of the military bases to which her husband was assigned throughout his career. She began her teaching career at the Alma School.
Willie and Cecilia never had any children, so it is fitting that they would leave a legacy for the students of Ennis High School through the establishment of the Major Willie J. Kucera Scholarship. There are more details to be worked out regarding this scholarship and more information will be released once this occurs.