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Neighbor inherits $12.5 million

By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com
Monday, December 3, 2012
Posted: 6 am ET

A little kindness goes a long way. Just ask the Sydney, Australia, neighbors of Betty Harris, who were surprised to learn they had inherited her $12.5 million estate upon her death in 2009.

The neighbors, Beatrice Gray and her husband, Robert, brought Harris bread and milk, helped her with her chores and paid her bills.

The widowed Harris had no children and was estranged from her nieces and nephews. One niece, the prior beneficiary of the estate before Harris revised her will, waged a nasty, two-year legal battle but lost. According to Australia's News.com, the niece wanted to put Harris in a nursing home against her wishes. Harris also told people she hadn't spoken to her nieces or nephews for 13 years and she swore they would get none of her wealth.

Although a doctor determined Harris, age 95 when she died, was suffering from mild dementia in 2005 when she revised her will, the court did not believe she was unaware of her actions.

News.com reported that Harris had explained her bequest by saying: "The Grays would be surprised, (while) my family are waiting for me to die." She added that "I am determined that my relatives after what they have put me through will not get one cent."

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Susan V
December 04, 2012 at 10:11 am

Great Comment Anna! John Y is so unhappy with life. No reason to start bashing Christians... this is a good story not a story to start fighting over who Christians are or not. By the way, I personally know the Gray's and, wait for it, THEY MOST DEFINITELY ARE CHRISTIANS! Merry Christmas!

December 04, 2012 at 9:50 am

John Y...you are down right silly to assume that the comment made about what the bible says was to impose Christianity on you or anyone else. You could have quoted what the Quran or any other publication you believe in said, and no one would have attacked your religion or turn this forum into a religious war.
You are obviously a bitter person who does not believe in freedom of speech, nor do you respect other peoples right to choose religion. I bet you are from a part of the world where you think that your religion is supreme. I just hope that you are not living in these USA where the majority of the people are Christians and a land that was built on Christian principles, because it would mean that you are walking around with hate for most people every day. Very sad!!!

December 04, 2012 at 9:45 am

John Y should know that his statement about Christians have killed more people than all the wars combined is FALSE. Most all the wars are and were religious wars. Has nothing to do with the neighbors inheriting millions. John must not believe in a Superior Being.

December 04, 2012 at 9:30 am

I would think that John Y is probably one of the children from his comment. The world would be a much better place if we would but care for one another like the neighbors did for this one in need instead of the greed displayed by the uncaring "family". Too much of the "what's in it for me" attitude. Expect nothing, gain eternal life in return.

December 04, 2012 at 9:27 am

I can say I have the same situation here. I've been taking care of someone for 17 years now including shopping, doctor's visits, cleaning her apartment, cooking, filling out papers, whatever help she needed I did it, I was there. She should be taken care of by her own daughter but instead, she was left on her own. I think the problem is she have no money to give or anything to leave behind once she's gone, so no one wants her or want to do anything for her for free. No one call or visit her at all, I'm the only one! She's now in the nursing home and I'm still there for her. (I helped her with the transition to moving into a nursing home, she fall down I found her on the floor hours later. she was in the hospital for weeks but then she needed 24 hr. nursing care. She had nothing left but the bills and I paid them all.) The nursing only calling me if they need any help with her and she only wants me around. Can imagine why!!!I'm not paid for what I'm doing at all, but it's a good feeling that I could make someone happy and that's enough reward for me. God sent me here to take care of her and I know I will get my reward in his kingdom.

John Y
December 04, 2012 at 9:01 am

The bible says; Love thy neighbor!
Why would you impose your silly religion on others? Quite probably the neighbors are simply decent caring people. Christians seem to believe they are the only ones who could possibly care for another, inspite of the fact that Christians have killed more people than all wars combined. I feel sorry for you and your sad little religion.

evelyn apilado
December 04, 2012 at 8:24 am

The bible says; Love thy neighbor! I believe in the kindness and good hearts of the
Gray's as they took care of the widowed without expecting anything in return. They did it out of love and compassion because the elderly lady was alone therefore as loving christians and being obedient to God's commandment, the reward is great!

December 04, 2012 at 7:14 am

Apparently the neighbors deserved it. They did for the lady for years, unlike her own greedy family. Good for them!

Cliff Clark
December 04, 2012 at 6:48 am

Nice story, nice people. I choose to believe the neighbors would have done the same for the lady even if she didn't have millions.
My wife and I did the same kind of things for two different elderly widowed neighbors, years ago. Now we're the "old folks" on the block.

There are many people who do similar good deeds, and most of us expect nothing in return. It's a good way to live, and we recommend it.

December 04, 2012 at 5:27 am

There is so much greediness and evil in this world today that you cannot even trust your family what they can plan to do with someone money to keep for themself without you knowing is what happen to my brother that was put in a nursing home and died at age 56 and sold his money for her daughter and grandchildren's
made me sick who we look up to as a mother when my parents died at a younger age.