State treasurer John Perdue presented an Unclaimed Property check of $34,000 Friday to United Way of Marion County, the last estate remnants of the late Gleason and Jean Kuhn of Fairmont.
The two had already left approximately $275,000 each to the United Way and two local hospice organizations.
Friday’s check was overlooked during the couple’s official estate settlement. A representative of State Treasurer John Perdue’s office notified United Way that it was the rightful owner and should claim the funds as unclaimed property.
“Philanthropy cannot be overvalued,” said Treasurer Perdue Friday, after presenting the check of $34,411 to United Way executive director Brett White. “The Kuhns worked hard, lived frugally and decided to enrich the lives of their fellow citizens. Very inspiring.”
The Treasurer made the comments before a contingent of a local media at the organization’s headquarters on Adams Street.
United Way Board President Mary Jo Thomas served as the Kuhn’s estate executrix, as their will dictated. The final funds fell through the cracks because the account has been dormant for some time. Jean died before Gleason and his name wasn’t on the account. The funds did not jump out as estate assets.
Through her work as executrix, Thomas said the Kuhn estate had already provided approximately $275,000 to each group, a sum of $825,000. The final distributions will bring the total to $928,000.
“We really don’t have any concrete plans for it yet,” White said of the latest bequest. “We’re excited because we get to put it right back here in our community.”
Both White and Thomas praised Treasurer Perdue and his office field representative Sandy Barton in particular for his efforts.
“We’re excited that Sandy was able to find this for us,” White said. “He has a reputation for finding, through his hard work, these outstanding amounts of money for organizations and individuals. When we received that call we knew it was good news on the other end.”
Thomas echoed the praise for the office as a whole.
“It’s so nice the office is able to reunite folks with money that they had lost or might be gone forever,” she said. “With this going to nonprofits it’s going to help a number of people. That was really what the Kuhns wanted. They wanted as much as possible left in their estates to go to Marion County and to help folks. We want to continue their legacy.”
The Kuhns left everything in their estate, save for a few relatives’ bequests, to the three organizations. The hospice groups have not yet completed their Unclaimed Property paperwork, but it should be in the same amount as the United Way check.