SEATTLE — Alan Naiman was identified for unabashed thriftiness that veered into comical, however even these closest to him had no inkling of the fortune that he quietly amassed and the final act that he had lengthy deliberate.
The Washington state social employee died of most cancers this yr at age 63, leaving most of a shocking $11-million property to kids’s charities that assist the poor, sick, disabled and deserted. The quantity baffled the beneficiaries and his greatest mates, who’re lauding Naiman because the anniversary of his loss of life approaches in January.
That’s as a result of the Seattle man patched up his sneakers with duct tape, sought offers on the grocery retailer deli at closing time and took his greatest mates out to lunch at fast-food joints.
Naiman, who died single and childless, cherished youngsters but in addition was intensely non-public, scrimping, investing and dealing further jobs to stockpile cash that he hardly ever spent on himself after seeing how unfair life could possibly be for essentially the most susceptible kids, his mates say.
They imagine a lifelong devotion to his older brother who had a developmental incapacity influenced Naiman, although he hardly ever spoke of it. The brother died in 2013, the identical yr Naiman splurged on a sports activities automobile — a modestly priced Scion FR-S.
“Rising up as a child with an older, disabled brother type of colored the best way he checked out issues,” shut pal Susan Madsen mentioned.
A former banker, Naiman labored the previous twenty years on the state Division of Social and Well being Providers, dealing with after-hours calls. He earned $67,234 and likewise took on aspect gigs, typically working as many as three jobs. He saved and invested sufficient to make a number of thousands and thousands of and likewise inherited thousands and thousands extra from his mother and father, mentioned Shashi Karan, a pal from his banking days.
Thrilled when he lastly certified for senior reductions, Naiman purchased his garments from the grocery retailer. He cherished automobiles, however for many of his life, drove beat-up automobiles and appeared to benefit from the solitude and financial savings of solo street journeys, mates say.
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After Naiman’s loss of life, Karan realized how little he knew of the opposite features of his longtime pal’s life.
“I don’t know if he was lonely. I feel he was a loner,” Karan mentioned.
Most of the organizations benefiting from Naiman’s presents mentioned they didn’t know him, although they’d crossed paths.
He left $2.5 million to the Pediatric Interim Care Middle, a personal group in Washington state that cares for infants born to moms who abused medicine and helps the youngsters wean off their dependence. The group used a few of what was its largest donation ever to repay a mortgage and purchase a brand new car to move the 200 infants it accepts from hospitals annually.
Naiman had known as the centre a couple of new child whereas working for the state greater than a decade in the past, and its founder, Barbara Drennen, confirmed up in the course of the evening to get the newborn.
“We’d by no means dream that one thing like this could occur to us. I want very a lot that I might have met him. I’d have cherished to have had him see the infants he’s defending,” Drennen mentioned.
Naiman gave $900,000 to the Treehouse foster care group, telling them that he was a foster guardian years in the past and had introduced youngsters in his care to the group’s fashionable warehouse, the place wards of the state can select toys and requirements at no cost.
Treehouse is utilizing Naiman’s cash to broaden its faculty and profession counselling statewide.
“The frugality that he lived by, that he dedicated to in his life, was for this,” mentioned Jessica Ross, Treehouse’s chief improvement officer. “It’s actually a present to all of us to see that pure demonstration of philanthropy and love.”