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Paul Desmond – Celebrating a Legacy of Music and Compassion
Estate Planning For Any Size Nest Egg
Five Common Estate Planning Mistakes
Can You Shrink Proof Your Estate?


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Paul Desmond – Celebrating a Legacy of Music and Compassion

Paul Desmond

Anyone who knows jazz knows Take Five, a classic jazz piece composed by Paul Desmond and recorded in 1959 by the Dave Brubeck Quartet. Paul Desmond left us too young and too soon; but not without leaving a lasting legacy. Countless people know and enjoy the music only he could create. His musical legacy is cherished by music lovers everywhere, an ongoing gift for all of us to enjoy.

What many people don’t know is that Paul Desmond created another important legacy...a legacy of compassion.

When the time came for Mr. Desmond to prepare his estate plan, he was reminded by his friend and attorney Noel Silverman that he would have a sizeable estate after his death by way of future royalties which would continue to accrue as long as the copyrights in his music remained in effect. Mr. Silverman suggested he consider naming a charity or an educational institution to receive the benefit of such royalties. Though he did not have a personal tie with the American Red Cross, per se, Mr. Desmond immediately thought of the Red Cross because of its far reaching humanitarian support. And so it was that he named the Red Cross in his will. After all of the personal bequests to relatives and friends, Mr. Desmond bequeathed his residuary estate and all of the continuing royalties from his music to the Red Cross.

Since his death in 1977, the Red Cross has received almost $6 million from his estate! And the gift continues, and grows. This income will help to provide for the critical life saving mission of the Red Cross for years to come. Those individuals who have benefited and will benefit from Red Cross services may never know the source, but we at the Red Cross know, and are most grateful and appreciative for all that Paul Desmond has done to preserve a proud tradition of compassion.

Without Mr. Silverman’s guidance, Mr. Desmond might not have even thought about leaving a lasting philanthropic legacy. The importance of such generous forethought is clear and reminds us how vital it is to think about our own legacy and how we can create or sustain one by supporting the Red Cross through our own estate plans.

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The articles in the issues of the Legacy newsletters are for general illustration purposes only. Information, Gift annuity and tax rates were current as of the time of publication. There can be no guarantee that such information will continue to be accurate in the future. Interested Donors should check with the Gift Planning Office for current rates and deduction amounts before completing their gifts. Calculations of tax deductions will vary based on applicable federal discount rates, which change on a monthly basis. The American National Red Cross is not engaged in rendering legal or tax advisory service. For advice or assistance in specific cases, the services of an attorney or other professional advisor should be obtained. Certain links in this site connect to other Web sites maintained by third parties over whom the American National Red Cross has no control. American National Red Cross makes no representations as to the accuracy or any other aspect of information contained in other Web sites.