When the retired president of a local labor union passed away at age 79, he left his entire legacy to his best friend. The recipient of his $250,000 estate, and a house of over 4,000 square feet, will be well-provided for until the end of his life. The aging heir is almost blind, deaf and crippled. He is also a cat.
Along with his adopted brother, the kitty will be cared for by one of the deceased’s daughters, who has moved into the spacious residence to fulfill her father’s wishes. Both house cats, according to the last will and testament of the woman’s father, will stay in the home located in a gated community.
Reportedly, the woman’s brother who took his father’s place as the union’s president, claimed his late father had made up the will several weeks prior to being admitted to the hospital, after being diagnosed with cancer. The lucky cat will stay in his familiar surroundings, the only home he has ever known. The man says his father and the feline spent hours sitting on the sofa, a unique bond forming between them. Family members took the will’s terms in stride and promised to respect the father’s wishes. They speak fondly of their father, calling him an extraordinary individual who had put the well-being of others before his own. He was an exemplary labor leader and had marched for civil rights with Dr. Martin Luther King.
People work a lifetime to acquire wealth. An individual’s final wishes may designate some surprising beneficiaries, but one’s final wishes need to be respected and carried out, regardless of any eccentricities inherent in those decisions. The critical nature of making sure we have our affairs in order cannot be overestimated. The late labor president is not the first to prefer his pet over people when designating the heir of his choice. One Italian heiress left $13 million to her cat, and in 2007, Leona Helmsley left her Maltese $12 million. It is, after all, a right we have strived for our entire lives. Attorneys can help with the creation of such wills and ensure these important estate documents are carried out to the letter.
Source: commercialappeal.com, “Man’s bequest of home, $250,000 ensures cushy life for feline beneficiaries” No author given, Nov. 23, 2013