Cynthia Singleton might think of herself as a human pin cushion.
Ever since being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 5, the Ottumwa, Iowa, native has been injecting insulin into her body four or five times a day to stay alive. Now at 76 years old and more than 100,000 shots later, she's one of the longest surviving females in the U.S. living with this chronic condition.
"I'm extremely fortunate," she said. "Still to this day, when I go in for a physical, everything is right down the middle—except for the blood sugar. I have no side effects from diabetes—no dialysis or lost limbs. My only complication is diabetic neuropathy in my hands and feet."
When she was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1943—amidst World War II—Cynthia Singleton's life expectancy was just 45 years, according to the Defeat Diabetes Foundation. It was a fatal disease before the advent of insulin in 1922, and at that time, there were still a lot of unknowns. "Prior to my diagnosis, I had gotten extremely thin," Cynthia Singleton said, who has one daughter, Dawn Olson, a 1986 graduate of the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. "My mom took me to the pediatrician in Des Moines—where I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes—and I still remember my mom learning how to give shots by shooting an orange. I guess that's like shooting into skin."
An active and realistic attitude has helped Cynthia Singleton through the ups and downs of Type 1 Diabetes, including all of the blood sugar checks and insulin injections. The support of her husband, Keith Singleton—a 1959 graduate of what is now known as the University of Iowa Henry B. Tippie College of Business—also helps. Cynthia Singleton travels extensively across Iowa through her husband's job with Airgas, and those trips include two visits a year to Joseph Dillon, M.D., an endocrinologist with University of Iowa Health Care.
"Dr. Dillon understands that with Type 1 Diabetes there are no vacations or guarantees," she said. "He's been extremely helpful with what I've needed from a care standpoint and from day-to-day needs."
Her most recent visit to University of Iowa Health Care involved a tour of the new UI Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center, one of the nation's most foremost diabetes research institutions. "The new research center was really impressive," she said. "Keith and I were able to meet a lot of the staff, including Dr. Dale Abel, the director of the center."
The University of Iowa's commitment to diabetes research is a major reason why Keith and Cynthia Singleton have left an estate gift to the UI's Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center. With the creation of the J. Keith and Cynthia Singleton Research Fund, the couple hopes to help nearly 3 million Americans who are currently battling Type 1 Diabetes.
"This gift will benefit a lot of people—whether it's medical research or for the hospital," said Keith Singleton. "This will benefit anyone who walks through the doors, and we hope it might one day help cure diabetes."
Keith and Cynthia's gift is being provided through a testamentary charitable trust. The trust will provide a home to the Singleton's daughter before being distributed to University of Iowa Center for Advancement.
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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the University of Iowa a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.
an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan
"I give to the University of Iowa, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Iowa City, Iowa, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."
able to be changed or cancelled
A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.
cannot be changed or cancelled
tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient
the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation
the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase
the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on
The person receiving the gift annuity payments.
the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid
a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will
the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will
A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the University of Iowa or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.
An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.
Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.
Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.
Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.
A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.
You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.
You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the University of Iowa as a lump sum.
You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the University of Iowa as a lump sum.
A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.
A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the University of Iowa where you agree to make a gift to the University of Iowa and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.