Long-term investments can be quite lucrative, providing you are willing to leave your investment for a longer period. A 98-year-old Chicago man took long-term investing to a whole new level though. Here’s the story!
Investing in Walgreens
Almost 70 years ago, Russ Gremel decided to invest approximately $1,000 in a local pharmacy chain called Walgreens. He held onto his stock for several decades and by the 90’s, his stock had reached a staggering value of $2 million.
Not Cashing In
Despite the large amount of money his stock was worth, Russ decided not to sell his stock and let it sit a little longer. Until this year, where he decided to finally sell his stock.
Surprisingly, Russ is not selling his stock to use for his own purposes, but is donating it instead! The 98-year-old Chicago man decided to donate all his stock to the Illinois Audubon Society, which is in the process of establishing a 400-acre wildlife refuge. Naturally, the refuge will be named in honor of this remarkable man.
Living the Simple Life
Russ has spoken out about his reasons to donate the money, instead of spending it.
“I’m a very simple man, I never let anybody know I had that kind of money.”
Even his statement about his donation is simple and short, much like the way he claims to live his life. It is certainly a remarkable story and nobody had any idea that Russ was this wealthy.
Russ claims that living the simple life has been his approach when it comes to finances. He says that he prefers stew and oatmeal over “fancy foods”. He never married and never had to take out a mortgage. So, this immediately explains why he did not sell his stock.
About his massive donation to the Illinois Audubon Society, he said the following:
“Why not give it to them now, when … I have the pleasure and enjoyment of seeing it.”
His environment is not surprised about the big donation he made to the Illinois Audubon Society, because many described him as a man with a big and open heart.
One of the people that spoke out about Russ’ giving nature was Jack Hennegan, one of many men who was a boy scout under the tutelage of Russ, who spent more than 60 years as a scoutmaster. Hennegan said the following about Russ’ character:
” He’s a man with a big, open heart. Every single person who knows him from the troop knows that”
Another friend of the 98-year-old Russ said the following:
“The gift that he has given to thousands of kids through Scouting and the influence it’s had on their lives, I think that’s 100 times more valuable.”
What a Wonderful World
We can all learn from Russ. In a world where everyone seems focused on themselves, Russ shows that having money is not the most important thing. Even though Russ will be remembered for his big donation, he will also be remembered for the thousands of kids he gave guidance to as a scoutmaster. Now, I think to myself…What a wonderful world!