Jacqueline Dubelle struggled while watching her mother suffer from severe congestive heart failure. "I witnessed my mom's pain and suffering each day," Jacqueline recalls. "She suffered and deteriorated over several years, which was so difficult. I think of it as a journey we took together." Jacqueline would like to make the journey easier for other mothers and daughters who battle heart failure. So she's made a planned gift to the American Heart Association through a bequest in her will.
"The legacy I am leaving will help other daughters help their mothers," Jacqueline said. "My hope is that the dollars I contribute to heart valve research will help pave the path to eventually allow congestive heart failure patients to have fuller lives." Jacqueline wanted to make an impact on heart valve research, so she made the American Heart Association the sole charitable organization in her will.
"As one person, you can't scatter your forces. You can't fight all the battles," she said. "I focused on where my heart is and I wanted to make a difference."
"I know my mother would be proud of my future contribution to heart valve research." Jacqueline suggests women "take care of our financial and legal health the way we do our physical health. Don't wait until it's too late. Make sure your family's estate planning documents are up to date, and don't wait for an emergency. It's the last thing you want to think of during difficult times.
"You will feel relieved knowing that when you leave this world, you'll leave a legacy for others so your journey won't end. Wouldn't it be great if in 100 years there wasn't any more heart disease? I know I have done my part, and life goes on."