Donor: His Holiness Pope Francis

Swatch Bio-Sourced Wristwatch

His Holiness Pope Francis
His Holiness Pope Francis

Jorge Mario Bergoglio became Pope Francis on March 13, 2013, when he was named the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church.

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Bergoglio worked for a time as a bouncer and a janitor as a young man before training to be a chemist and working as a technician in a food science laboratory. After recovering from a severe illness, he was inspired to join the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) in 1958.

Never before has Pope Francis offered such a unique gift to any recognized United States charitable organization. In this case, Pope Francis has generously donated his Swatch watch to the Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation, which honors the life and memory of a young boy from Green Bay, Wisconsin by helping others pursue their dreams in higher education with scholarships and encouragement.

The simplicity and clean lines of Pope Francis' Swatch watch, with its day-date and snow white dial, reflect the life of His Holiness. This iconic Swatch model SUOB705 cleared its final inspection on June 6, 2018.

This historic watch comes with a poignant letter of authenticity from the Personal Secretary of His Holiness, Fr. Fabio Salernon, to the LaViolette Family and members of the Brian LaViolette Foundation.

As it turns out, Brian LaViolette himself saved his hard-earned money and bought the final watch in his collection, a Swatch Jellyfish. This is the very watch that his father Doug still wears on dress-up days.

The Brian LaViolette Foundation was formed by the LaViolette family to honor the memory of their son, Brian, who passed away in a swimming accident in Green Bay, Wisconsin when he was just fifteen years old in 1992. Brian was not only an excellent student, athlete, and musician, but he loved watches, starting his own collection when he was four years of age.

Since 1992, the Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation has presented 1,058 scholarships to deserving college-bound students in Northeastern Wisconsin, the United States, and other parts of the world. The Foundation continues Brian's legacy by helping high school seniors financially to achieve their educational dreams and, at the same time, providing them with encouragement and inspiration. 

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Learn more about the Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation