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By Jamie James, fomer MPA communications manager                                      


Before the COVID-19 pandemic changed everything across Michigan and the United States earlier this year, my family's world was rocked by it's own devastating event: the sudden death of my husband, William "Bill" Ray James III, at only 42 years of age.

There was nothing leading up to his death that sound-ed any alarms. Bill had enjoyed a long President's Day weekend coaching our son's 13-and-under baseball team at a local tournament. He was a little more tired than normal on that Monday night, but wanted to relax a bit by playing a favorite video game. I said "goodnight" and went to bed as normal on Monday, Feb. 17. At around 1:00 a.m. on Tuesday, I was suddenly awakened by him asking me to call 9-1-1 and  telling me that some-thing was very wrong.  

The ambulance arrived and took Bill to the local hospi-tal, which was not quite equipped for what he needed. Life flight was called in, but my husband never stabi-lized to the point that they were able to transport him. After hours of work, the doctors informed me there was nothing more that could be done for him. Just like that, his life was over. My husband of 16 years and father to our two children, Brody, 13, and Bailee ,11, as well as a beloved high school teacher, son and friend to many, had passed away from cardiac arrest.

After the inital shock, my mind immediately went to how I would be able to support our family without large disruptions and adjustments. Fortunately, just three short years ago, we had a discussion about obtaining life insurance. Never did I think that I would actually have to cash in that life insurance policy for my husband. However, because he cared for us, we did not have to worry about selling our home. My kids did not need to worry about losing their friends. Because he liked to prepare for the unexpected, our accustomed lifestyle did not need to change. During such a great time of sorrow and mourn-ing, it was comforting to know we had the financial cushion of a life insurance policy. Having that financial security in place allowed me to focus on my kids and our emotional needs, instead of our financial needs.

If you currently do not have a life insurance policy, I implore you to explore coverage. Nobody thinks it will happen to them. Becasue we had the forethought to plan ahead, I am able to be a more present parent for my children during this extremely difficult period. I am forever grateful that my husband made sure he could look out for us, even in the worst calamity of our lives: the loss of him.

If you have questions about PSI Insurance Agency's insurance program, contact Ron Devers, PSI Insurance Agency Manager at 
(800) 678-2774 or visit


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