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Alumnus Creates Legacy to Benefit Future Medical Students

Morgan Tyner

Dr. Morgan Tyner ’84 made a planned gift to TCU that will create scholarships for future medical school students.

Retired dentist Morgan Tyner ’84 was first attracted to Texas Christian University because it had the best pre-health professions program available. The University proved to be a good fit for Morgan, a Nebraska native, challenging him academically and providing opportunities for personal growth through hospital work and his fraternity’s charitable outreach. His TCU experience taught him compassion and a different way of looking at the world.

Morgan’s caring personality and dexterous hands prompted his TCU advisor to recommend dentistry as the ideal professional path. He earned his doctor of dental science degree from the University of Nebraska — Lincoln in 1988, completed his residency and promptly set up practice. As a triathlete, he was in excellent health and sometimes biked more than 50 miles a day. Life was good. Then the bottom fell out.

“About a year into my dental practice, I had a seizure in the office,” Morgan explains. “They took me to get a CAT scan and found I had a very aggressive grade 4 brain tumor — anaplastic astrocytoma. They gave me two weeks to a month to live. Life was basically over for me.”

That was more than 25 years ago. Since then, Morgan has endured nine brain surgeries, four months of external radiation and one year of chemotherapy. He moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, for better weather and access to top medical specialists.

Morgan may be the longest survivor of this particular cancer, so he treasures every day and plans to leave a lasting legacy through a charitable gift annuity to the University. His gift will provide scholarships for future TCU graduates who enroll in the TCU and UNTHSC School of Medicine. Pending accreditation and approval, the school will open in July 2019. Students will learn with an innovative curriculum, the latest technology, and a focus on communication and empathy.

“It is so fitting that Dr. Tyner, who served as a dentist with these skills, is supporting the future graduates of this school,” says Dr. Stuart D. Flynn, founding dean of the medical school. “We could not be more appreciative and excited to see the impact of Dr. Tyner’s legacy as our future scholars grow to become the next generation of leaders in medicine.”

Because his left side was adversely affected by the tumor and surgeries, and he was a “lefty,” Morgan learned to use his right hand, but not with the precision needed for dentistry. A childhood interest in movie making led him to seek a new career in videography after learning how to shoot and edit. He now operates a business from his home.

Through his experiences, Morgan has learned patience and grace. He hopes his story will impact the lives of students who receive a scholarship created by his planned gift.

“I hope they do something amazing! Who knows? Perhaps a person who I help will be the one who finds a cure for this cancer.”

You can make a difference for future students with a planned gift to TCU. For more information, please contact TCU Gift Planning at 817.257.7299 or giftplanning@tcu.edu today.

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