Happy National Be a Millionaire Day!

Hey Surprise Millionaires; May 20th is National Be a Millionaire Day!  You can join in the celebration by using #BeAMillionaireDay on social media.  Let’s make National Be a Millionaire Day a day to remember!

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She Played All The Right Notes!

Phyllis Hanse was a fixture in her small town of Webster South Dakota.  AnPhyllis Nanse (2) unassuming woman, Phyllis had taught piano to thousands of children over several decades beginning in the 1950s.  Even though she had no children of her own, she was a fixture at local school activities over the years.  Maybe that’s why she left the $4.2 million surprise for the local school and community.

An Unexpected and Remarkable Gift

North Dakota farmer Darrel Hendrickson made his living from the rich farmland of the aptly named Richland County.  Even though he livedDarral_Hendrickson_Pic2 (2) outside its city limits, Mr. Hendrickson loved the town of Colfax and wanted to remember the Richland County community in his will.  And remember them he did!  Local schools and churches will share in the more than $4.5 million estate Mr. Hendrickson accumulated throughout his life tilling and cultiviating the land. These gifts have obviously left the local community speechless.  As a local school official stated, “I’m just marveling at this”.  I must say that I am too!

A Beautiful Tribute To A Life Well Lived

Have you ever thought about what people might say about you after you are gone?Evelyn Haley (3) Probably not.  It’s not a topic that most of us would like to dwell on.  But if I ever were to dwell on it, I would like for it to be something like the beautiful tribute the sister of Surprise Millionaire Evelyn Haley made to her.  Evelyn appears to have been a very interesting lady who lived a full life.  As you might have guessed, she was quite thrifty too.  I guess that would explain the $3 million estate she left to benefit her community!

A Cooperative Spirit

Jon Rohr of tiny Limon Colorado was a wealthy man but you couldn’t prove it by hisJohn-Rohr-Photo (2) lifestyle. The manager of the local electric cooperative, Mr. Rohr was known for driving an old car without air conditioning and preferring to shop at thrift stores instead of  the local shopping malls. It was this frugal lifestyle which gave the townspeople the impression Mr. Rohr was not a “man of means”.  Imagine their surprise when this same gentleman left a multi-million dollar estate to benefit the community! 

Honoring The Lady And Her Wishes

As we discussed last week, one of the most important things a Surprise Millionaire can do is to make sure their wishes are known prior to their passing. Unfortunately, I have Joan-Edwards-010 (2)stumbled upon another story with a Surprise Millionaire’s will, this time from the United Kingdom. Retired mid-wife and nurse, Joan Edwards thought she had done it completely right. She contacted her local solicitors and had a last will and testament drawn up making (she thought) her last wishes known. It appears that even with all of this preparation, the specifics of the will’s bequest were still open to interpretation. It was unfortunately left to the government (and its political parties) to sort it all out. I guess I need to amend my cautions on this subject to include, “make your wishes known, make them legal and make them very clear.