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Alumnus Used His Estate to Help the School Thrive

shiel family

On the radio, the Eagles were "taking it easy," Watergate was breaking and hitchhiking was how kids got from one place to another when Andy Shiel was a Cathedral High School student in the early 1970s. "I lived at 45th and Washington," he said. "I'd hitch a ride—well, everybody did—every day. It got to where the same couple of guys would pick me up each morning and drop me around 14th and Penn or right at 14th and Meridian."

Once inside, Shiel entered a school that, like the nation, was in transition. "When I started as a freshman, we had almost all brothers (teaching)," Andy recalled. By graduation day in 1974, he said the opposite was true. "There were hardly any left."

Changing times and Cathedral's declining enrollment led to a decision by the Brothers of Holy Cross to leave the School and, ultimately, to turn over leadership to a lay board led by Robert V. Welch. But while some significant changes were coming to the School, Andy said, Cathedral's core values held strong—and remain today. "I talk all the time about the diversity and the quality of the education," Andy said. "Cathedral draws kids from all parts of town—always has. And the caliber of the education—I don't think Cathedral gets enough credit for that."

It was while Andy was still at Cathedral that he went to work for his father's company, buying it outright in 1983. At the time of his death, Andy was the proud father of three Cathedral graduates. He also served as the ShamrAuction co-chair in 2000 and a member of the School's board of directors. He said he never hesitated when doing his estate planning. "There's a great community and family spirit at Cathedral that I don't think has changed. It's all for one and one for all," he said. "Part of my heart is always and will always be with Cathedral. But the important thing is, Cathedral needs the support. People assume we have all the money we need—we don't. That's the reason I wanted to do a planned gift. I wanted to do something significant that will keep the School moving forward; something that will help Cathedral thrive."

Andy's gift leaves an enduring legacy that will live on, even though he is gone. If you are interested in more information, please contact Abbe Ernstes at or (317) 968-7348.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Cathedral High School 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 Cathedral High School, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 5225 East 56th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46226, 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 Cathedral 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 Cathedral 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 Cathedral 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 Cathedral where you agree to make a gift to Cathedral 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.

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