Aún continúa cuidándolos

Aún continúa cuidándolos

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Eran casi las 11 p.m. de una noche en diciembre cuando el boxeador Oscar de la Hoya perdió su pelea contra Manny Pacquiao. La familia Virgen se despedía de sus familiares después de mirar juntos la pelea. Deleitándose aún en el buen ambiente de haber estado en familia y disfrutado de una buena comida, se dirigieron a su casa en Port Hueneme, California. En
el trayecto, su camioneta chocó con
un conductor que se dio a la fuga. El vehículo se dio vuelta dejando a Nicolas y a su esposa Teresa inmóviles en el interior. Sus hijos Gabriel y Mayra lograron arrastrarse hasta salir del auto y apenas sufrieron heridas. Cuando el equipo de rescate llegó, Teresa ya estaba muerta. Nicolas tenía tres vértebras rotas y múltiples fracturas en los brazos. “Tu vida cambia en un segundo”, dice Nicolas.

Tras haber sido atendidas sus heridas, la familia Virgen intentó reorganizarse. Afortunadamente, Teresa tenía un seguro de vida que los ayudaría en ese proceso. Al comienzo, la pareja no estaba convencida de que Teresa necesitara una póliza propia dado que no trabajaba fuera del hogar. Como contratista de construcción, Nicolas entendía la lógica de contar con un seguro de vida para él. Sin embargo, su agente de seguros Marina Nuño les explicó que si algo le ocurría a Teresa, esto generaría gastos. “Piensen en todas las cosas que hace Teresa”, recuerda Marina que les dijo.

El seguro de vida les permitió pagar sus cuentas mientras Nicolas estuvo sin trabajar durante casi dos años recuperándose de sus lesiones, incluida la amputación de un dedo. También ayudó con los gastos de la universidad de Mayra y de su hermana mayor, Susana. Si no hubiera sido por el seguro, Nicolas está convencido de que su familia habría perdido su casa. “Teresa sigue cuidando y velando por nosotros”, señala.

Peace of Mind for the Long Term

Peace of Mind for the Long Term

When Vernon Duckett first heard about long-term care insurance he wasn’t enthusiastic, but his wife, Helen, talked him into it. Recently retired from the oil business, Vernon, then 65, was healthy and vigorous, as was Helen, 66. But Helen did not want to be a burden on their son, Jeff, or anyone else.

Working with insurance agent Phyllis Shelton, they bought policies that would help pay what was then the going rate for care at a nursing home. Later, when policies with better features became available, Phyllis contacted the Ducketts and helped them upgrade their coverage. The new policies offered excellent coverage for home care, and had inflation riders that increased their coverage annually to help keep pace with the rising cost of care.

When Helen was in her mid-70s, she began having difficulty with everyday household chores, such as using the microwave oven. A visit to the doctor confirmed that these were symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Vernon cared for Helen at home, and the policy gave him the freedom to drop her off at an adult daycare center for five or six hours a day. After Vernon suffered his second heart attack in five years and could no longer handle her care, he placed her at one of the nicest private nursing homes in the area, where she stayed until her death at age 82.

Today, Vernon is 84 and healthy enough to play golf twice a week. He calls long-term care insurance a “blessing” because it allowed him to afford the best care possible for his childhood sweetheart, to whom he was married for more than 60 years. “This long-term care policy has given me peace of mind, security and independence,” he says.

An Amazing Gift

An Amazing Gift

Shane Donaca’s motto was “go hard or go home.” And he brought that passion and intensity to every aspect of his life, from racing motorcycles, to building a large commercial construction business, to spending time with his wife, Kim, and their three children.

Because so many people depended on him, insurance professional Kris Preble wanted to ensure that Shane had adequate life insurance coverage. They sat down to construct a plan that included a combination of term life insurance, to cover immediate needs, and whole life insurance, to help Shane accumulate cash value over the long term and gain lifelong coverage.

As Shane’s life moved at the speed of light, it was difficult to get one-on-one time with him. So Kris, who had become a family friend and also shared Shane’s love of motorcycles, went with him on a trip to a regional motorcycle race so they could spend some time together. It was there Kris was able to shore up the insurance planning with Shane’s signature.

Shane’s intention was to sell his motorcycle at the gathering. Having suffered a motorcycle accident just months earlier, he had made the decision to scale back on his riding and racing. Unfortunately, on his way to sell the bike, he hit an embankment and suffered fatal injuries.

Although Shane had signed his amended life insurance contract just 12 hours before his death, his family received the full death benefit. Kim was able to pay off all the company’s debts and still has the money the family needs to continue their life financially. “Life insurance is an amazing gift,” says Kim. “I don’t have to lie awake at night worrying about money or about getting another job so I can put another child through school.”

Serving Country and Family

Serving Country and Family

Army Major William F. Hecker’s long-range plan was to become a college English professor, but first he was committed to following in the footsteps of his family and serving his country. A West Point graduate, he was an officer in the 3-16th Field Artillery Battalion, and in late 2005 he was deployed to Iraq. Just six weeks into his tour of duty there, he was killed by a roadside bomb. Bill was just 37, and left behind his wife, Richelle, and four young children.

Nothing could have prepared Richelle emotionally for her loss, but she knew Bill had taken steps to ensure the family would be okay financially. The Army provides soldiers with a $100,000 death benefit, and Bill had bought additional life insurance offered by the military. But he knew even that wouldn’t be enough to cover his family’s needs. So he purchased additional coverage on his own. His individual policy even included an option to increase his coverage every three years regardless of his health status, a valuable feature for someone with a hazardous occupation. “He did all the right things,” says Samantha Hilliard, Hecker’s insurance professional.

Richelle and her children, now ages 3 to 11, recently resettled in Colorado Springs, Colo. With the insurance benefits safely invested, Richelle’s living expenses should be covered long after her Army survivor benefits have run out. That leaves her free to remain a stayat-home mom as long as she wishes.

Though Bill’s service to his country put him in harm’s way, that wasn’t the only reason the Heckers bought life insurance. “Obviously, he had a dangerous job, but there’s always a chance that any of us won’t make it,” says Richelle. “It’s just the right thing to do.”

Rebuilding After a Devastating Loss

Rebuilding After a Devastating Loss

Stephen Mayhle always wanted to become a police officer. When he was offered a job as a police officer, Stephen jumped at the chance. But moving with his wife, Shandra, and their two daughters from their home meant belt tightening.

One way to cut expenses, the couple thought, was to terminate a $50,000 universal life insurance policy that Stephen bought shortly after he and Shandra married. After all, they reasoned, Stephen’s group life insurance benefit through his employer more than doubled his existing coverage. However, their insurance professional Chad Gregorini explained that with a young family to provide for, Stephen needed more coverage, not less. For the same price, Stephen could buy a $250,000 20-year term policy. Stephen took his agent’s advice.

Eventually money wasn’t as tight. The couple was even able to purchase a home. Then the unthinkable happened. In the early hours of an April morning in 2009, several officers, including Stephen, responded to a domestic disturbance between a mother and son. When they arrived, the son opened fire. Stephen, 29, and two other officers were killed.

The killings left a young widow wondering how she would manage. As friends and family gathered at the Mayhle home, Chad stopped by, too. Shandra felt a huge sense of relief when Chad said, “Mrs. Mayhle, you’re going to be OK.”

The insurance money helped Shandra put financial worries aside. She paid off a car loan, started college funds for the girls, created a retirement fund for herself and continued paying her mortgage. Most importantly, Shandra can spend time with her daughters, now 7 and 5. “They need me right now,” she says. “They don’t need a babysitter.”

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