A Gift to Help Parents Stay Strong

Debbie Day

Debbie Day

San Diego native Debbie Day was born with multiple heart defects. Doctors told her parents she required open-heart surgery as soon as she grew stronger.

Her parents' lives came to a halt when they received the news. It was the early '60s, and such surgeries on infants were still experimental. All they wanted was to ensure their tiny daughter would be OK. "Back then, there wasn't a support network for moms and dads whose children were having surgery," says Debbie. "Wouldn't it be great if my parents could have had the Ronald McDonald House?"

Debbie says she's alive today because of the successful heart procedure doctors performed when she was only six months old. She's grateful to now be a happy, healthy mother with three children and five grandchildren.

Debbie Day with her grandchildren

Debbie with grandchildren Ethan, Emma, Isaiah and Eli.

She understands how much other parents need help staying strong for infants with life-threatening conditions. "A mother and father need lots of support to handle that intense stress. They have to be strong to help their child recover."

"The thing is anybody, and at any point in their lives, could find themselves needing the San Diego Ronald McDonald House."

Today, Debbie helps organizations that support those mothers and fathers. That’s why she began volunteering at the House six years ago, across the street from the very hospital that saved her life. She drives families to local stores so that they can shop for personal items. And she brings kids attending our on-site TK-12 school to field trips at parks and museums.

Debbie Day with her daughter

Debbie with daughter Melinda at 2019 Many Hearts Legacy Society reception, in the Padres Owner’s Suite at Petco Park.

Debbie received a letter one day asking if she'd consider naming San Diego's Ronald McDonald House in her estate. After pondering the idea, she decided, "I can't give a lot, but I can still give a little." She wanted to do her part to ensure new families can always find a place to gather strength for their sick child. Naming the House in her personal trust would make that possible. So last year, Debbie became a Charter Member of the Many Hearts Legacy Society.

"The thing is anybody, and at any point in their lives, could find themselves needing the San Diego Ronald McDonald House." For Debbie, putting the Ronald McDonald House in her estate was a gift to her San Diego community.

What You Can Do

Please consider joining the Many Hearts Legacy Society. You can help ensure new families will find a network of support that helps them get through their child's hospitalization.

Take the Next Steps

  1. Consult your advisors.
  2. Notify us you're including the House in your estate plan:
Grantor Charitable Lead Annuity Trust

Provides income payments to a qualified charitable organization for a period of years, the lives of one or more individuals or a combination of the two; after which, trust assets are paid to the donor of the trust.

A power of attorney form that transfers ownership of stock.

Securities such as stock that are in certificate (paper) form.

Investments that have increased in value since the time of their purchase.

Testamentary means bequeathed through one's will.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

I give [insert amount, percentage of the estate, or 'the rest and remainder of my estate'] to Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego, Inc.

Federal Tax ID #95-3251490

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor-advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the House or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust (CRT) provides income to you, as the donor of the CRT, or to other named individuals, and does so each year for life or for a period not exceeding 20 years. The remainder of the assets go to your chosen charity.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the House as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the House as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the House where you agree to make a gift to the House and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.