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Ms. Priscilla Piestewa

Ms. Priscilla Piestewa, Flagstaff, Arizona (Mother of Deceased Veteran and Guardian of Grandchildren)

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee:

I am very honored and humbled to be able to have input into this topic.  I’m sorry we won’t be able to attend in person.

In 1964 I met my husband.  In 1965, he was drafted and served in Viet Nam.  He came home in March of 1967, and we married in November of 1968.  In December of 1968, our oldest daughter was born.  In March of 1971, our son was born.  In October of 1978, our second son was born.  In December of 1979, our second daughter was born.

As God blessed us with our children we made investments in them.  They each made us proud in their own ways, and thus thanked us for the investment we made in them.

Our youngest daughter joined the military and gave her life for us and our country.  However, she left behind 2 children.  We received her insurance money, and because we wanted to make life better for her children, we invested the money for them in their names.

I’m not complaining because our grandchildren are very precious to us.  However, my concern is that the children have to file and pay taxes on the money they receive, and on the interest they make on their investments.  They are only 7 and 8 years old.  Was the death of their mother not payment enough?

A monthly check for the children is issued to us in the amount of $649.00,  which we invest in  the Children’s activities:

Tae Kwon Do  $200.00 (monthly)
Piano Lessons $130.00 (monthly)
Gymnastics $79.00  (monthly)
Wrestling $69.00 (seasonal)
Softball $95.00 (seasonal)
Baseball $95.00 (seasonal)
Schooling $6,000.00 (yearly)

We are retired and live on our retirement pensions, and as my husband would say, like so many others we live pay day to pay day.

Their mother gave her life, and we are grateful for the support we do get, but why do the children have to pay taxes.

My husband and I are fortunate we can invest in and support our grandchildren, but I know that there are others who find it hard to make ends meet.

Thank you in advance for any other assistance you can give it will be greatly appreciated.