The tragedy of the loss of a longtime member rocked my Crossfit community last week. In an instant, a husband, father, and friend in the prime of his life was gone. He left a wife and two small boys behind. He would’ve turned 39 in February.
A Grieving Community
Our community is grieving. If you were to drop in at our gym any evening of the week, chances are you would’ve met this man. He would’ve most definitely said hi to you and given you one of his big smiles. Most nights, he’d be there until close, sweeping the floors as his wife finished coaching classes, helping set up for the next day. He was always manning the grill at any of the gym socials held throughout the year, sometimes with a completely inappropriate apron on!
My heart hurts for his wife. To suffer the loss of your partner, your best friend, the father of your children, the love of your life…I just can’t fathom it. She now has to pick up the pieces and carry on alone, the plans they had made together altered. Our little community is rallying around her and her boys, pitching in where we can to help.
Planning for Tragedy
Obviously, I don’t know the details of their financial picture, and it’s not my place to speculate on it. But in my thoughts this week, both as a friend and as a financial coach, I pray that they had plans in place. You hope you never have to use these plans, but you have to have them, to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
Nobody enjoys talking about things like life insurance and wills. However, the greatest gift you can give to your loved ones during a time of tragedy is having a solid plan in place. A plan allows the loved ones left behind the gift of not having to make financial decisions while grieving. Everything will be handled, the funds are there and the details have been taken care of. It doesn’t remove the grief and pain, but it does make the process a little simpler.
The Role of Life Insurance
If you’ve never considered life insurance before, I ask that you look into it sooner rather than later. Especially if you are married and/or have children. My general recommendation is to look into a policy that pays out 10x your annual income. The rationale for this amount is that you are in essence replacing your lost income for your spouse/children. And both spouses should each have a policy in place.
Even if you are single, consider a small term life policy, especially if you are still young and healthy. The longer you wait, the higher the premiums will be as you age. Also, if you were to have health issues before securing a policy, you could become uninsurable. A policy also provides your loved ones with the funds to make any funeral arrangements. If you’ve never dealt with it, the cost of a funeral is very expensive. The insured individual doesn’t benefit financially from the policy. it’s for the loved ones left behind, making sure they are taken care of and can move forward after the loss of their loved one. And it’s something you budget for – it’s not a Baby Step, it’s part of life on the plan. Having a solid budget allows for you to make room for important items such as this.
The events of last week have hit my friends and me very hard. We’re banding together and supporting the family as best we can during this difficult time. As we do, I hope that through this unfortunate tragedy, some good will come out of it. I hope that at least, it may cause some to examine their own plans, and better prepare for their future. And I hope that for you, as well. If you have questions about how you can make a plan, contact me today.