Mike Michaels came from humble beginnings in Brooklyn, and he found great success in his 25-year career as a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch in Phoenix, Arizona. But perhaps his greatest success was as a loving father and grandfather to his family, and as a passionate supporter of the causes that were close to his heart, including the American Diabetes Association. That’s why it came as no surprise to his children that, when Mike passed away, he included a gift in his will to continue his support of the Association.
“When my father was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, that was a real wake-up call,” said Mike’s daughter Barbara Anderson. “He immediately turned to the American Diabetes Association for information and education.” Mike’s son Chuck added, “Dad learned to monitor his blood sugar and he became very interested in diabetes research. He even attended a few Association-sponsored conferences to learn about the newest developments in the search for a cure.”
Mike’s commitment to the American Diabetes Association included annual gifts during his lifetime, and his legacy gift came in his will. “As a financial advisor, Dad knew the importance of creating his estate plan and making tax-wise choices,” Barbara explained. “He wanted to be in control of how his estate was distributed, and not go to Uncle Sam.”
Chuck continued, “My dad was first and foremost his own man. He had invested well, lived modestly, and was very open with Barbara and me about his charitable intentions. We always knew one of his greatest passions was the American Diabetes Association.”
Barbara and Chuck, who both followed in their father’s footsteps with careers in finance, believe their father’s main reason for giving was to advance diabetes research. Barbara said, “Research was his focus. He wanted to help the American Diabetes Association get one step closer to a cure for diabetes.” Chuck added, “He knew diabetes could be a debilitating disease, and he felt it was important to help others who were also struggling. The gift he made through his will was his way of doing that.”
Photo caption: Mike Michaels with his son and granddaughter