Grieving Widow Learns Husband's Inheritance Goes to Neighbors Who Moved In Days before His Death – Story of the Day
Monica's husband Gerald died of a sudden heart attack, and the family was shocked. But they were even more shocked at the will reading when their lawyer announced that Gerald had left everything to the neighbors. Then, she discovered the shocking reason why.
"That's impossible," Monica Grayson breathed when their lawyer read her late husband's final will. She thought his estate would go directly to their son, Mark, but instead, he was giving it to their neighbors, the Hampton family. Everything except her house.
She stared at Mrs. Hampton in surprise and saw her exchanging a look with her husband. They knew something she didn't. "What going on?" she demanded from them.
Their lawyer revealed something shocking. | Source: Pexels
The lawyer tried to calm the situation, but Monica was about to get even angrier if they didn't answer. "Mrs. Grayson, there's something you should know… about our son, Tom, and your son, Mark."
"Darling, what happened?" she asked him in concern. But Gerald just shook his head, kissed her forehead, and went to their bedroom to think.
Two weeks ago…
Monica and her husband Gerald were having a pleasant Saturday morning. They had gotten married years despite their 18-year age, which made others frown. It didn't matter. They loved each other dearly, and their son, Mark, was 25 years old already. They were so proud of him, mainly because he often visited their home on Staten Island despite living in New York City. He had stayed the night and was still sleeping.
At 77, Gerald was the picture of health, and Monica thought they had many more years together, so she never worried much about the future or thought of what would happen if he was gone.
Their morning was interrupted by a knock on the door. She went to open it and saw two people smiling at them kindly. "Hello there! We're the Hamptons. We just moved in next door and wanted to introduce ourselves. I hope that's ok?" the kind lady said, holding out a pie for Monica.
Monica served tea and the piece the Hamptons brought. | Source: Pexels
"Oh gosh. We should be the ones bringing you pie! Come on in. Let's talk for a bit," she invited, grinning at them. "That's my husband, Gerald."
The older man stood up and greeted their guests. They sat down at the dining room table while Monica served tea and pie and started chit-chatting. They talked for a long time before Mark woke up and came downstairs.
"Honey! Meet the neighbors. These are Denise and Robert Hampton," Monica gestured to their guests, and Mark came over to introduce himself.
"It's very nice to meet you. But I have to rush," the young man answered, putting on his jacket. "Bye, Mom. Dad, see you later!"
Monica smiled as their son left and turned around. She didn't notice that the Hamptons were frozen in place, but Gerald did. While she picked up their teacups and plates, Gerald tried to determine why their invitees started acting so weird after seeing their son. But Robert stood up abruptly, announcing they were leaving.
Monica didn't understand why they left so quickly but shrugged her shoulders at Gerald. "Didn't you notice they started acting strangely after seeing Mark?" he asked her, but she told him to let it go.
Gerald decided to find out more behind his wife's back. | Source: Pexels
Unfortunately, Gerald didn't let it go, but Monica had no idea what he was doing. A few days later, she saw him get home with the palest face in the world.
"Darling, what happened?" she asked him in concern. But Gerald just shook his head, kissed her forehead, and went to their bedroom to think. She should have pressed for an answer in hindsight, even though the truth would seriously hurt her.
A few days later, Gerald had a heart attack that none of them were ever imagined, and the Hamptons attended the funeral, which Monica thought was nice of them. She never expected to see them at the will-reading, though, as they didn't know each other for long.
"Mom, calm down, please. There must be an explanation for this," Mark took his mother's hand and looked at the Hamptons.
Their son, Tom, was with them, and he didn't understand what was going on either. "Mom. Dad. Why did a stranger give us all his money?" he demanded from his parents.
Robert started an unbelievable story. | Source: Pexels
Robert finally took a deep breath and began speaking. "Remember the day we met? We talked for a long time, but when your son came down, we left?" he asked her. Monica nodded and frowned. "The reason we left is that… your son… looks exactly like I did at his age."
"What?" Monica said, looking between him and Mark. He wasn't wrong, but she had always thought that Mark looked like her grandfather. That's why he didn't resemble Gerald.
"Well, a few days after that, Gerald came to the house, and we started talking about it. He noticed it too, but then he met Tom. He was shocked, and he showed us a picture of himself when he was in the army," Robert continued, holding his wife's hand in support. "He looked exactly like Tom."
"I don't understand," Tom muttered, and Mark echoed his thoughts.
Denise spoke up. "We paid to have some DNA tests done quickly. We know someone, and they confirmed our suspicions. Tom and Mark were mostly likely exchanged at the hospital. He was born in New York-Presbyterian Hospital, right? Gerald told us, and we were going to dig further. But then… well, he was gone."
Monica didn't understand why Gerald never told her. | Source: Pexels
"Why didn't anyone tell me this?" Monica said, tears falling freely from her eyes. Mark and Tom were staring at each other in shock.
"Gerald didn't want to alarm you until we were sure. The DNA test just came, but we were hoping for more answers from the hospital. Maybe they could start an investigation. Something. But I'm so sorry, Monica. We never imagined that he would've changed his will and so quickly," Denise tried to explain. "We never asked him for anything.
"So, my husband decided to favor the son he has never met? The one he didn't raise over our dear Mark?" Monica wailed, and her son embraced her tightly.
"It's ok, Mom. I don't need that money," he said.
"We don't want that money. Right, Mom? Right, Dad?" Tom spoke up and looked serious. "Look. The past happened. We can't do anything about it. But I have a mother and a father that loved me. They are my parents. I don't care what happened at a hospital years ago. I don't need a new family, and you should get your husband's money. So, keep it, please."
Mark agreed with Tom's words. | Source: Pexels
Mark nodded, still embracing his mother. "He's right. I have my parents, and I don't need anything else. No matter what DNA says or what a hospital did, you are my mother," he emphasized to Monica, tightening his arms around her.
"I love so much, dear," she told him and cried some more into his chest.
In the end, the Hamptons took nothing, and Mark told his mother to keep everything. He didn't want anything. Both young men seemed utterly unaffected by the truth, although Monica stared at Tom whenever she saw him at his parents' house, and the Hamptons did the same with Mark.
What can we learn from this story?
- Family is the one that loved and raised you, not necessarily the ones that birthed you. Due to a freak accident, Mark and Tom were exchanged at birth, but neither of them cared because they loved the parents who raised them.
- It's vital, to be honest with your spouse. Gerald's decisions blindsided Monica, and he should have told her as he was suspecting all along.
Share this story with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.
If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a woman who learned of her grandmother's death and demanded her inheritance.
This account is inspired by our reader's story and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to email@example.com.