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Seattle Attorney Left Behind $188 Million to Charity
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Seattle attorney Jack MacDonald had no children, so he created a charitable trust, which following his death in September, will now provide  40 percent of his $188 million trust account to the Seattle Children’s Research Institute. The rest of the trust money would go to the University Of Washington School Of Law and the Salvation Army. The news of his service donations to charity after his death has now come to the notice of media.

Leaving his legacy behind, which is the largest philanthropic gift in Washington State, and the sixth-largest in the nation this year, MacDonald lived frugally, wore threadbare clothes, rode the bus to work and collected coupons to increase savings.


MacDonald earned his law degree from the Washington School of Law in 1940. And he showed his gratitude by providing the largest gift in the history of the law school.

He also left a sizable trust account for the Salvation Army, because he loved the poor, and lived his life as a poor man despite building up a huge fortune. Through his life and living, he created a story worth mentioning, and a story that makes us all rethink about the legacy we would be leaving for this world.

MacDonald was born in British Columbia and grew up in Seattle. His paternal grandfather had emigrated from Scotland to the little village of Elora, Canada. Generations later, he expressed his gratitude by sending across a donation of $150,000 to the Ontario town. This gift helped the town rebuild the town hall and make an ice rink. It also helped in other municipal projects. The town of Elora named its central square in honor of MacDonald, and he and his parents are buried in the town.

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He worked for three decades as an attorney for the Veterans Administration in Seattle and shifted with his wife to a retirement community in 1997.

Image credit: Seattle Children’s Hospital



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