At age 93, Albert Hartig has a twinkle in his eye that gives warning to his sharp wit and big heart. He's a lively man who rode his motorcycle until age 80, and at the urging of his wife, Linda, only recently stopped driving his convertible. A Sudoku and crossword puzzle fan, passionate philanthropist and fiscal conservative, Al is also a longtime Americares donor who has included a gift to Americares in his estate plans.
Al had a long career. After serving in the armed forces, he joined the family investment firm, starting by hand-delivering actual stock certificates. Back then it was a face-to-face business, which he enjoyed. Al worked hard, the business prospered and he did well.
But life also had its heart-breaking challenges, which makes Al's sparkle and desire to help others all the more amazing. He fuels his optimism with the philosophy: "It could always be worse!"
After 41 years at the firm, Al retired and began volunteering in his community at blood drives, Meals on Wheels and a city rehabilitation center and hospital. Pushing gurneys and wheelchairs and escorting wobbly blood donors suited his outgoing personality and he continued his volunteer service until just this year.
Al has always been a giver, as are his children and grandchildren, and he's quick to proudly recount the many gifts they have made in his and Linda's honor.
In the 1980s, Al and Linda learned about Americares through his daughter who worked with its founder Bob Macauley. Since that time, the organization has been an important part of Al and Linda's philanthropy and they have traveled to Nicaragua and Mexico to see Americares work in action.
Americares efficiency suits Al's fiscal conservatism, the organization's logistical expertise appeals to his no-nonsense nature and the humanitarian mission to his big heart. "I like the way most of the funding goes directly to benefiting people who are suffering or to clinics being rebuilt," he says. A number of years back Al decided to plan a meaningful gift to Americares as part of his estate plans. "My legacy gift makes practical tax sense," Al says. "And I've been fortunate in my life and figured I should share it."
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