Growing up in Ipswich, England, which is 60 miles northeast of London, Dianne Carlile was not around many animals. Although her mother did not have the same affinity for animals as Dianne, she did allow her daughter to have one cat as a young girl.
When she was a young woman in England, she met her husband, a United States airman, who brought her to America to begin a new life. The couple originally settled in Kankakee, Ill., where her husband had grown up, but soon moved to Cape Girardeau, Mo., where his sister lived. She says she enjoyed living in the southeast Missouri town and found it a good place to raise her son, Shaun. After divorcing, Dianne chose to stay in Cape Girardeau, where Shaun graduated from Southeast Missouri State University. Later he earned his master's degree at Saint Louis University. When Shaun moved away from Cape Girardeau, Dianne felt she needed a change. She moved to St. Louis and eventually settled in Kirkwood, which she now calls home. Shaun was established in a promising career when he died tragically in 1996 at the age of 31.
Although Dianne had been an accountant most of her working life, she found herself searching for something more fulfilling after her son's passing. She decided to combine her love of animals with volunteer work,which was how her relationship with the Humane Society of Missouri was forged. She began volunteering in the adoption center, then decided to work in the development office assisting with mailings and keeping the staff organized. Dianne also launched a second career with animals—she is a pet and house sitter and says it is perfect for her as she no longer owns any pets of her own.
Volunteering was only the beginning of Dianne's relationship with the Humane Society of Missouri. She wanted to do more, so she arranged a bequest in her estate plans for the Humane Society and became an 1870s Associate. She says it is a perfect way for her to contribute by remembering the Humane Society in her will and at the same time considering her own needs during her lifetime. As a volunteer, donor and 1870s Associate, Dianne is truly committed to animals and to the Humane Society of Missouri.
"Since Shaun's death, my love for dogs has helped fill a big void," Dianne says. "Dogs can be a lifesaver; I know they certainly have been for me." If you have questions about providing for the Humane Society of Missouri in your estate plans or about other planned gifts, please contact Shannon Reynolds Torbett, CFRE, at 314-951-1584 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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