Amy O’Neill Grant’97 DSC
Awarded October 7, 2022
2022 Distinguished Service Citation
Anyone who encountered Amy O’Neill Grant took note of her deep compassion for others, lively sense of humor, and team player sensibilities. A biochemistry major and three-sport lettered athlete in soccer and indoor and outdoor track & field, Amy became a track & field co-captain, Academic All-America and All-Conference Champion, and earned a “B” blanket—a highly coveted symbol of athletic ability and leadership. She held every soccer scoring record throughout her four years at Beloit College, but she’s remembered just as much by her teammates for her dedication to the team. Her brother James shared, “Amy really loved her time at Beloit and it allowed her to become the person she was meant to be.”
Amy’s caring spirit brought her to the Goldie B. Floberg Center in Rockton, Ill., where she worked as a child care worker and later as a case manager after graduating from Beloit. Her job there, which involved educating children with special needs, changed her career trajectory from science to teaching.
After graduation Amy married Jimmy Grant in the Beloit chapel then moved to Maryland where she earned her teaching degree from Towson University. There she was elected to Delta Kappa Gamma, a professional honor society for women educators. Her fellow special education teacher and dear friend, Sharon Johnson, remembers that Amy touched many of her children’s lives. “She was loving, kind, compassionate, and always thought of others,” Sharon said. “She wanted you to know how much she loved you. I’ve never met anyone like Amy, and there will never be another.”
After a fellow teacher was diagnosed with breast cancer, Amy became heavily involved in organizing teachers and other community members in major fundraisers for the Susan G. Komen Foundation and participated in other awareness walks. Amy persevered in the wake of her own diagnosis with the disease until her passing in 2008.
The Beloit College Alumni Association is honored to bestow this Distinguished Service Citation posthumously to Amy O’Neill Grant.