William “Bill” Iglehart never met a stranger, his family says — until Alzheimer’s. So who was this man that left a legacy so strong that his family would move across the globe, build a business based on his principles and start an event to honor him?
“I remember being a little kid walking along the streets in New York City, and there’d be a homeless man on the corner,” said his daughter Robin Stubbolo, now a resident of North Carolina. “And he’d say to my mom, take the kids up there [the street], and meanwhile he gave the guy money. He was the most generous person I have ever seen.”
He also had a propensity to be chatty. Bill’s grandson, Josh Stubbolo, recalled, “So when the 3 of us [Bill, Josh & his dad] would go out, the family would basically have no idea when we were coming home, because it depended on how many people we’d meet along the way.” Unsuspecting individuals like grocery store cashiers and Josh’s childhood friends were often introduced to this friendly banter.
Bill, whose father left as an infant, had no father figure or positive influence until he went into the military. But he became a self-educated man. He attended the police academy, and served on the police force for more than 20 years, becoming an expert in fingerprinting. At one point he gained his real estate license and at another point he started a construction cleaning business in Florida. Bill became an avid reader, amassing an impressive library, and imparting upon his entire family the importance of an education. All of his children went on to earn degrees — from interior design to engineering to education to mathematics, among others. A aspiration that was passed down through the generations of their family.
Around 2012, Bill met the first stranger he ever knew, and it came in the form of signs indicating he was developing some form of dementia. He was diagnosed in 2013 with Alzheimer’s disease. The once gregarious man, became withdrawn from conversations. His meticulous organizational skills became haphazard at best. Slowly the family saw the patriarch of their family slipping away, and Bill would pass away from complications of the disease in 2019. What transpired for their family over the course of those years impacted every member in one way or another.
It was evident from early on that Bill’s wife, Ruby, would need to enlist help from the family in his care. Josh shares of the earliest days of his disease journey, “When he was first diagnosed, we were very ignorant to the dimensions of the disease and what the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s was like.” This brought the family to the resources of the Alzheimer’s Association to help them navigate the disease. The family connected with a local support group, from which Ruby still has friends who act as her own support system.
The diagnosis also called family members near and far to North Carolina. Most of the family was predominately in Florida, but some were as far away as overseas. After graduating from college, Josh already had aspirations of being closer to family. As things started to progress with his grandfather’s situation, Josh, his mom Robin and his sister and uncle moved to North Carolina where his grandparents now lived. Robin retired early to make the matriculation northbound. And Josh was the first to become a live-in caregiver for his grandfather and grandmother. That role would be handed off to other members of the family including the uncle that moved back from China and still plays this role for the family.
As Josh settled in North Carolina, the vision of starting a family business began to formulate. It was Bill who provided the inspiration. Even though he had dementia already, Josh spoke to him, and he essentially laid out the path. He knew Josh wanted to be a financial advisor and open his own firm. The whole reason Josh and his uncle, Todd, got into the stock market was because of Bill who ran a stock club for the better part of fifty years. And as the search for a company name proceeded, they landed on the perfect homage to Bill, Family Legacy Financial Solutions.
With most of the family now in North Carolina and the firm in full swing, another idea bubbled to the top for the family. Because of the nature of the work the firm does, they host all kinds of events. In the midst of planning these events, the concept of the firm hosting a golf tournament in memory of Bill became a reality. And as suspected their personal and professional network have come out in big ways to support the family, firm and tournament.
The family chose to align their tournament with the Alzheimer’s Association’s The Longest Day campaign, which allows anyone to harness their creativity and passion to raise funds and awareness to outshine the darkness of Alzheimer’s. Despite the pandemic trying its best to throw hurdles in their path, the first Family Legacy Annual Golf Tournament took place in the fall of 2021 raising more than $10,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association and another local nonprofit. Building off the momentum from the inaugural tournament, the 2023 event will be held on March 13 at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary, N.C. They’ve set their sights on a goal of $15,000 with the Alzheimer’s Association as the sole beneficiary.
Anyone passionate about helping end Alzheimer’s and with a love for the game of golf is invited to join their 4-man scramble tournament. Registration is now open, and includes 18-holes, lunch, dinner and awards.
What this tournament means is evident when Josh talks about it. One friend of the firm that brings out his own father who is living with dementia as a way for him to still enjoy time together. Other play because of their own passion for fighting the disease. What may have started because of their own family’s journey now offers a legacy for all families impacted by this disease. And it could be said, that if he were still here, Bill would be front and center greeting every player and regaling them with an epic story.
LIKE JOSH, ROBIN, THEIR FAMILY AND FIRM, WE ALL HAVE A REASON TO FIGHT FOR A WORLD WITHOUT ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE. Simple plans up to big ideas – Start planning your own The Longest Day Fundraiser today.
The day with the most light is the day we fight! Leading up to and culminating on The Longest Day – the summer solstice, thousands of participants from across the world will come together to fight the darkness of Alzheimer’s through an activity of their choice. Together, they will use their creativity and passion to raise funds and awareness for the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer’s Association®. Whether participating at home, online or in-person, we have plenty of fun ideas to engage family and friends in The Longest Day.