Veronica Fuentes was about to begin the spring semester other freshman year at college when she got devastating news that would change her life forever: Her mother was in critical condition after an accident in the Dominican Republic. Fuentes immediately began planning to travel to her mother's side. Before she got there, her mother passed away. It was three days after her 19th birthday.
As she tried to handle her grief, Fuentes also realized she had to deal with the uncertainty of her family's financial future. She immediately dropped out of school, unsure how her two younger siblings would live without their mother's income.
"All I kept thinking about was how I was going to keep my family together," she said.
In the coming days, Fuentes learned her mother had life insurance. Fuentes was both surprised and relieved that her mother had the foresight to protect her children in the event of a catastrophic event. The money covered the mortgage, living expenses and college tuition. Fuentes immediately re-enrolled in school, missing just a few days of the new semester.
"I never imagined something like life insurance could change the course of your life," she said. "I don't know where I'd be right now if my mom hadn't planned for the future."
Contemplating the 'What Ifs'