Brittney LaCombe

A Mother’s Death Brings on Struggle

Mother’s Day for single mom Roseann LaCombe meant camping with her three daughters on the beach near their home. During last year’s trip, Roseann complained of mild leg pain. Later, she couldn’t bear weight on the leg and went to the hospital, where doctors kept her for observation. The next morning her eldest daughter, Brittney, then 20, received a call informing her that her mother had died of a pulmonary embolism.

Without life insurance, the girls’ financial struggle started immediately. Roseann had been unemployed at the time of her death, and there was only $300 in her bank account. Brittney’s part-time job was no match for the bills.

A week after Roseann died, shut-off notices arrived for the utilities, and the bank called every day looking for payment on the mortgage for their three-bedroom house. By the end of the month the girls, with help from a charity, moved to a small apartment. To make the rent and take care of her sisters, Brittney works full time. “If my mom had had life insurance, my life would be completely different,” says Brittney. “We would have been able to stay in our house and pay the bills.”

Despite her struggles, Brittney is determined to look toward the future. With the help of financial aid, she attends college in the evening and is working on a social-work degree. “I’m going to be the first one in my family to graduate college. I always wanted to make my mom proud,” says Brittney.

You can help students like Brittney make their dream of a college education come true by donating to the nonprofit Life Lessons Scholarship fund. Donate here.

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