Gayelene’s legacy of MS support

photo of Gaylene

I was raised in a small town in Saskatchewan, with only about 80 residents. In our small town, about eight or ten people had multiple sclerosis.

But it really hit home for me when my sister Merrilee was diagnosed. If you love someone with MS, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.

She was only 28 at the time. She lost the use of her left eye for several months, then the use of her left arm. It was a shocking diagnosis for our whole family.

Fortunately, thanks to huge advances in research (funded by generous donors!), Merrilee was able to get in on the early use of a new medication. The doctors credit that with the success of controlling her disease progression. I’m so grateful she’s been able to live a full, independent life.

And naturally, I had to give back and get involved. Once MS touches your life, you want to see even more research advances that could potentially help those we love, and others living with MS.

That’s why I decided to do my first MS Walk in 2000, a year after my sister’s diagnosis. I became a one-time donor, then started giving monthly to the MS Society. Then I joined the provincial board, and I’ve been a member of the national board for almost 10 years. And, I’ve made included a gift to the MS Society in my will.

A gift in a will, sometimes called a legacy gift, is an incredible way to make a lasting impact. It could fund breakthrough research that will lead to a future without MS. That’s the kind of legacy I want to leave.

As an accountant, I’m familiar with all the benefits of leaving a charitable gift in one’s will. Did you know it’s often possible to leave more in your will than you could have given during your lifetime?

Not only that, these gifts are 100% tax deductible to your estate in the year of your death. That means your estate will receive the matching portion back, reducing the overall taxes and ultimately leaving more for your family. You can take care of your family and make a meaningful contribution to finding a cure for MS.

I feel a lot of peace knowing my values are going to live on for years to come through my gift.