A Seattle couple left their entire estate of almost $1 million to the United States of America. The money was deposited in the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s general funds. So why would this couple leave all their worldly belongings to be liquidated with the funds generated from selling their house and other possessions get handed over to the government? Not to mention the money they’ve saved all these years!
According to ABC News on May 21, the couple had no living relatives other than each other. The lawyer who took care of seeing that their funds went to the government after they both died thinks that America meant so much to this couple for more reasons than most could fathom that they did this as a type of “thank you.” Peter Petrasek and Joan Petrasek came to this country from Canada back in the 1950s and it is the journey before they arrived in this country that made them thrilled to be welcome in America.
Peter Petrasek escaped from Czechoslovakia to Ottawa, Canada meeting his Irish wife Joan there. The couple then moved to the U.S. and they didn’t have kids. While the couple never said why they chose the U.S. as their beneficiary, it is believed it was because they were so welcome here after fleeing war-torn Europe in World War II.
The Huffington Post reports “A married couple from Seattle, including a husband who had fled Nazi persecution, made it their last wish that Uncle Sam inherit their entire estate.” This is not something you hear about everyday especially with the cloud hanging over the U.S. government’s spending habits today. Apparently this couple had faith in the country!
Attorney Peter Winn, who worked with the Treasury Department to accept the money on behalf of the government said; “This case is interesting because it seems to be that these were two immigrants who felt grateful to have this adoptive country open its arms to them after having a hard time in Eastern Europe during World War II,” Winn said. “It really reminds you how this country was founded by immigrants, and it’s pretty obvious these folks felt pretty proud they were U.S. citizens.”
Peter Petrasek out lived his wife Joan, who died in of breast cancer in 1998. He was basically a recluse from the day she died until he passed away in 2012. Peter lived alone in the house after his wife passed and he spent very little money and he did very little housekeeping, if any at all. After his death the home was sold and the money was added into the funds going to the government.
Peter had recycled oil in containers in his home that he used for heating. He was a very frugal man. The couple’s last wish was made complete and the U.S. government has now taken possession of their money.