Ronnie Leaves a Legacy Gift to KenCrest


Within a few months of living in a KenCrest Community home, Ronnie's entire life changed, encouraging him to leave a legacy gift.

By Sydney Kerelo

Judy was raised on a charming street in Pottstown, PA. She lived across from her now-husband, Stan, and his brother, who had Down Syndrome – a genetic disorder caused by the presence of an extra chromosome 21 at birth.

Ronnie was affectionate and sweet, yet he was born at a time when families often didn't raise a child with Down Syndrome at home. Instead, they would typically send them to state institutions for what was thought to be better care, a belief that has now been proven incorrect.

Ronnie's family deeply desired to care for him at home, a testament to their unwavering love. However, they encountered numerous challenges and lacked the necessary skills, knowledge, and support to provide him with care. This led them to make the difficult decision to enroll him in a KenCrest workshop in Pottstown. This move allowed Ronnie to engage with the community and provided his aging parents with much-needed respite.

Initially, Montgomery County paid for Ronnie's attendance, but after a while, the county opted to stop funding. The family fought this choice, but the county remained firm. However, KenCrest's recognition of the family's circumstances and appreciation of Ronnie's presence inspired them to allow him to keep attending.

When Ronnie's father passed away, his mother found it challenging to care for him alone at home due to the physical demands. Aware of KenCrest's residential services for individuals with IDD in Pennsylvania, she helped Ronnie transition to a group residential home. And he thrived.

KenCrest’s Adult Residential Community Living Homes give individuals with disabilities the chance to live in the community of their choice with person-centered support. Each home complements the lifestyle of the person living within them, ensuring they live a meaningful lifestyle full of activities, employment, friends, and family.

Within a few months of living here, Ronnie was thriving. His entire life changed—not just his living situation. Suddenly, he participated in activities and went on trips. He even visited the beach with his roommates and traveled to Las Vegas!

Without KenCrest, he wouldn’t have had these experiences.

Ronnie has since passed, and Stan and Judy decide to make KenCrest the beneficiary of his insurance policy as a way to express their gratitude for the incredible life KenCrest provided him.

But Judy and Stan did more than just that. They continue to make an annual gift to KenCrest and have included the organization in their estate plans. A percentage of their estate will be given to KenCrest as a bequest—a designated dollar amount or portion of the total estate to be donated.

Legacy gifts are given to organizations like KenCrest to help sustain the excellent work being done. For Judy, watching Ronnie grow, thrive, and start experiencing life in his group home at KenCrest is what inspired her family to leave a legacy gift.

She hopes their contribution will be an example to her children and encourage them to follow in their footsteps and give back to causes like KenCrest.

Have you ever considered leaving a legacy?