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Jeanne Harris

When you hear the expression “planned giving,” consider the face of a youthful female, busy raising three children. This is the new face of planned giving—and the way Jeanne Harris of Chapin, Illinois, has chosen to give back.

Jeanne's family has been touched by cancer innumerable times. Most devastating was the loss of her father in 2001. Encouraged by a friend to consider participating in Relay For Life, she initially didn't feel up for it. After finally conceding, the event had a dramatic impact on her life. “My heart turned around, and I just wanted to do something to stop the cancer,” she says. “Relay inspires you to take action. This is the action I took.”

Jeanne and her husband Keith's course of action was to honor her father in their will, with a bequest to the American Cancer Society. “I wanted a way to help, a way to give—a way to stop this disease. A will is such a simple thing to do, and something you should do. You never know when something might happen.” Jeanne notes the similarities between Relay and planned giving to the Society—both are steps toward making a difference.

Jeanne and Keith look forward to living long, fulfilling lives, but want to ensure their grandchildren never experience the heartache of cancer.

Volunteering, fundraising and participating in Relays are all tremendous ways to make an impact on the work we're doing today. We've made great strides—all due to your continued efforts. Planned giving offers another opportunity to make an impact—on future generations to come. Bequests in wills, trusts, and other planned gifts keep hope alive and help us continue building a cancer-free future.

To find out which charitable giving option best fits your specific situation and to help us make a difference in the fight against cancer, please contact an American Cancer Society estate planning professional in your area by calling toll free 800-227-1885.