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Lifetime support switch turns on for Youth Music and Engineering Scholarship

I’ve been feeling a very odd tug of regret recently that I did not know Richard or Mary Jane Weeks. Richard died many years ago, and last November, I was informed of Mary Jane’s death. They both lived long lives.

He was an engineer, and she was a homemaker. There’s not much more I can share, and I truly wish there were. Perhaps they chose to live under-the-radar, so to speak, because in this age of mass technology with ancestry, genealogy, social media, print and online archives, there’s simply very little to be found.

Much of my understanding about them comes from all the meticulous records in my files, and I can draw some conclusions about their attention to detail, a desire to live a simple life and to give back to others. It’s clear they were thoughtful planners.

In 1998, and then again in 2002, they started Charitable Remainder Trusts, setting aside a part of their assets to be invested and naming Legacy Endowment Community Foundation as the CRTs’ Trustee.

Given their ages for both of the CRT’s calculations, they were receiving a generous amount of annual income, paid out on a quarterly basis. After Richard’s death, this dependable stream of income probably became even more important to Mary Jane, especially when she left our area to be closer to her sister back east.

Over the years, both CRTs invested corpuses grew, even while paying a generous amount of annual income to Mary Jane, which was important as her needs would’ve likely grown more significant as she aged.

After receiving the dry announcement by Mary Jane’s attorney noting her death and wrapping up even drier tax paperwork for the CRT’s last tax returns, there’s a new joy beginning to replace that odd regret in my heart. I’m learning more about what was important to them from the planning behind the two CRTs.

First was the guaranteed income stream that Richard and Mary Jane received while they were alive. I’m certain Richard wanted to make sure Mary Jane would be taken care of financially if he died first. The second, doing good in a community they both loved: Fallbrook.

Since they have both died now, the remaining amounts in the two CRTs are being transformed into permanent endowment funds. Per their instructions, one will support the Fallbrook Music Society for youth music endeavors and the other, to launch a new scholarship for Fallbrook High School students who are reaching for an engineering degree.

I’ll never know if they loved Beethoven, Bach or Vivaldi best, pasta nights at home over steak dinners out, or preferred bright sunrises to glowing sunsets. But I do know, they cared about the importance of music for youth performers and felt the joy of accomplishment from building something from nothing by using science and mathematics.

So, in the names of Richard and Mary Jane Weeks, forever forward, young lives will be profoundly changed, affected and improved because they cared about making a difference for others. And really, this thought may be all I really need to know.

For those reading this article, I hope you will join with me, Legacy’s Board of Directors and volunteer leaders to send a heartfelt “thank you” skyward for Richard and Mary Jane, filled with all the warm thoughts of sincere appreciation we can possibly gather.


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