On December 6, 2014, the Lancaster County Bar Association will hold another Wills for Heroes event. The Wills for Heroes program provides estate planning documents to first responders and their spouses. The program started after September 11, 2001, when it became clear that many first responders did not have basic estate planning documents in place. Anthony Hayes, an attorney from South Carolina, realized that he could provide these brave people, who put their lives on the line by running into situations most people run from, some peace of mind by helping ensure that loved ones were taken care of in the event something happens to them.
In 2007, the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division made the Wills for Heroes Program their 2007-2008 service project. The program has grown tremendously over the years and has spread across the country. Lancaster County Bar Association started the local program in 2010 and is poised to serve its 1000th Hero at its next event. I have been fortunate to participate for the last four years as a volunteer and I am always amazed at how grateful the Heroes are to those of us working the event. But as I’ve heard it said countless times, it is us, the volunteers and community that are grateful to the first responders for all that they do to keep us safe. If you are interested in learning more about the Wills for the Heroes program or want to see how you can help, go to www.willsforheroes.org for the national website, or for Pennsylvania’s site visit: www.pabar.org/public/yld/Projects/willsforheroesyld.asp.