Review or Write Your Will

Are you ready for an ETSU Legacy Circle quiz?

Pat Brown, ETSU Class of 1962, is

a. an ardent ETSU football and basketball fan

b. a current giver who has endowed a scholarship in nursing

c. a member of the ETSU Legacy Circle who has updated her will to include the ETSU Foundation in her Last Will and Testament, or

d. all of the above, and an advocate for reviewing your will NOW.

Ready for the answer? It is "d" for "all of the above." Please give yourself some extra credit if you, like Pat, have recently reviewed your Last Will and Testament to update your planning for your family and the ETSU Foundation. Recently, Pat shared the experiences she had in updating her will.

"I had my will from years ago, but frankly it wasn't up-to-date with my current plans to benefit my family and the ETSU Foundation. I had heard about a living trust, but my attorney advised me that just revising my will was appropriate for my situation. ETSU has been so good to me over the years, so after reviewing my existing will with my attorney, she indicated that I could revise my will to remember the ETSU Pirate Club, as well as the Patricia M. Brown Nursing Scholarship in the ETSU Foundation. I also decided to sign a durable healthcare power of attorney in this process, too," Pat noted.

As a loyal Buccaneer fan, Pat wanted to include the Pirate Club in her will for athletic scholarships. As an R.N. for more than 35 years at the James H. Quillen Veterans Affairs Medical Center and at Holston Valley Medical Center, Pat is acutely aware of the nursing shortage. "By donating some mutual fund shares to the ETSU Foundation, I established an endowment to assist ETSU nursing students. Then, in my estate planning, I was able to remember the endowment in my will. So, updating my will allowed me to remember ETSU for the future. If I hadn't done this, then my old will wouldn't have reflected my current wishes for family or for the ETSU Foundation," Pat recalled.

Retirement is as busy for Pat as were her active days as a nurse. She founded her own business, Brown Vending Company, which serves customers throughout East Tennessee. Pat isn't "retiring" when it comes to providing advice to other ETSU alumni and friends with respect to reviewing their wills.

"By all means, if you don't have a will, you need a will. Without one, you will be doing your family and loved ones a real disservice. If you have a will, my advice would be to review it periodically and also discuss it with your attorney to make sure it is current. If you don't, you forfeit that special opportunity we all have to benefit our families as well as the ETSU Foundation," Pat concluded.

Thank you, Pat, for your helpful advice to other ETSU alumni and friends. Following your lead, we can be confident that our wills are updated to benefit our loved ones and the students, faculty, and programs at ETSU through the Foundation. An updated will can create that special and enduring legacy for you at East Tennessee State University.

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