Sunday, August 19, 2012

$5,000 Life Insurance Policy... Promises Kept

$5,000 Life Insurance Policy...  Promises Kept

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee

The funeral home director pulled out the bill for the direct cremation, from his desk.  He handed it to the woman who sat before him.  She was beneficiary of a little $5,000 life insurance policy that was taken out ten years ago.

The woman remembered the conversation with her step-father as they sat talking one day.  Her step-father told her about the policy, he told her what to do when 'one day came and he wasn't here anymore'.

He told her to not have a funeral service for him, to just simply have his body cremated, to keep the ashes to one day mix with her mother's... and scatter them together at the place where he lived.

He told her to take the policy, pay for his funeral arrangements, to keep what was left for herself.  He said he knew she'd helped him pay for her mother's funeral arrangements when her brothers didn't help him.  He wanted her to keep what was left over after the arrangements for him.

She looked down at the bill the funeral director presented her.  He told her that all she had to do was to sign the papers, all would be taken care of.  Her step-father's sister and brother had already been there, made arrangements for the direct cremation, so forth.

They didn't know that her step-father had made her legal representative in decision making processes regarding her step-father's medical treatment, choice of hospital facilities, and other matters which related to medical procedures in conjunction with his prescribed treatment plan.

They also, didn't know about this clause in that legal form she had, that said:  This limited appointment pertains only to medical treatment hospitalization, and .... in the event of said  her step-father's name (here) death to make arrangements for final disposition of his remains.

The legal form was dated February 06, 2006.  The life insurance policy was taken out on March 05, 2002, one year after her mother's death.

The woman looked down at the 'Statement Of Funeral Goods And Services Selected' bill the funeral director gave her.  This is what was already selected, arranged for by her step-father's brother and sister:

Total Professional Services  $2, 654
Transfer of Remains To Funeral Home  $411.00
Direct Cremation Fee  $400.00
Cardboard Container For Cremation  $74.00
Sales Tax  $5.00
Death Certificates (2)  $20.00
Paid Obituary  $130.00
Total All Selections:  $3, 694

She sat and thought about this... she looked up at the funeral director and told him that before she signed ... she'd just like to tell him something that he did back in 2001 when her mother died, and charged for it when it wasn't required.  She wanted to get it off her chest because it was wrong for him to have done it.  It no longer mattered, she just wanted ... him to know.

The funeral director's face took on a defensive expression, said he would like to know what it was.  She told him that she had told her husband that before she signed any papers that she wanted the funeral director to know that she knew he'd charged for embalming her mother by making her step- father think it was required.  By law it wasn't... unless the body is infectious, or going to be held over for a long period of time... none of which applied to her mother.

The funeral director agreed that that 'shouldn't have been done and I'll check into that'.  The woman told him that it no longer mattered... she just wanted him to know what he'd done.  He was the one who did it.........

The woman could have had another funeral home come to pick up her step-father's body, had it transferred... the costs would have been half of what this funeral home was charging.

She could have.... 'not' .....signed any papers to be responsible for payment.  There was nothing that made her 'have to use that little $5,000 life insurance policy'.... to pay for that funeral arrangement.

The woman could have.... just walked out of the funeral home.  She could have just called another funeral home to come get the body.  She could have caused more grief for her step-father's sister, and brother.

She ..... could have kept every penny of that $5,000 life insurance policy.  She was sole beneficiary of it.

The woman sat there for a minute... she let the funeral director know that she had a legal paper saying that 'she had the right to make all the funeral arrangements .... she pulled it out of the folder.

The funeral director took it, made a copy of it.  He acknowledged that she was the one who had say-so how it was arranged.

The woman decided that instead of hurting her step-father's sister, his brother.... causing more grief.... by having the body transferred......

Instead of being an ugly person because she didn't like this dishonest man sitting before her......

Instead of making all new arrangements and ignoring the arrangements made by the step-father's brother and sister.......

Instead of just getting up... deciding to keep all of that $5,000 (God knows she needed it, she and her husband were going through a hard time).........

This woman looked at the funeral director, down at the papers on his desk... and

Began signing them.  She wasn't going to cause more unnecessary grief to her step-father's family.... this woman knew grief only too well.

She wasn't going to just walk off and keep the whole $5,000 to herself.....

She wasn't going to change any of the arrangements the brother and sister had already made....

The woman finished signing papers, got up, asked to see her step-father for one last time.

She was taken to a room where he laid on a stainless steel table wrapped in a white sheet, his head up on a 'block'.  The room was cold...

The woman stood there looking down at the man whom she loved very much until the day he decided he wanted to go with other women, live a life without her in it anymore.. the day he turned a cold shoulder to her.

She never stopped loving him, though the pain in her heart always remained great.  This was the man whom was so good to her, and was the only man in the world she ever thought of as 'father'.

As she stood there... she was numb.  She didn't want to feel anything toward him.... little by little... grief began seeping into her consciousness...

No!  She didn't want to feel anymore pain... no!   She tried to feel only anger at him as she looked at his face.  She began to cry on the inside for the man who laid there... the man that 'used to be her father'... the man whose last words to her were:

'You'll always be my daughter no matter what, I love you.  Bye-Bye'.  This was in the last phone conversation they ever had...

She touched his face with her hand, it was so cold.  She was so cold with the shock of learning he'd died...

The woman never wanted to forget him, the only man who ever told her he loved her as his daughter.  The woman took her cellphone out, took 2 photos of him to have always.

She turned away, opened the door and smiled politely at the funeral director, two of his colleagues standing in the hallway.  She thanked him, he walked her to the door making conversation.  She had nothing to say to him... she'd said it all.  She walked out...

Shortly thereafter... she pulled out in front of two cars .. each coming from a different direction.  She doesn't remember how the two cars avoided hitting her... she just knew ... she wasn't in any condition to drive.

She pulled into a parking lot, called her husband to tell him what just happened.  He was so upset that she could have been killed... he talked to her as she drove home.

When she got home, she laid down on the bed... very sad.. at the same time feeling good that she'd kept her promise to her step-father.... she 'did right'.

1 comment:

  1. This lady that did right is an absolutely wonderful person. I understand she has been through a lot in her life and yet still have the heart to keep her promise no matter the pain it causes her. This lady is a real trooper! She cares so much about other people. Any friend that she has is very lucky to have her for a friend! I pray that God will always bless her! Love, Ms. Nancy