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FRANEY WILL (10/09/69)

decided: October 9, 1969.

FRANEY WILL


Appeal from decree of Orphans' Court of Schuylkill County, dated March 11, 1968, in re estate of Mary Cuff Franey, deceased.

COUNSEL

William R. Mosolino, for appellant.

Joseph A. Zane, with him Frank J. Toole, John E. Lavelle, and Burke & Burke, for appellee.

Bell, C. J., Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'Brien, Roberts and Pomeroy, JJ. Opinion by Mr. Chief Justice Bell. Mr. Justice Jones and Mr. Justice Roberts, although entertaining grave doubts as to whether the writing is a testamentary disposition, nevertheless concur in the result.

Author: Bell

[ 436 Pa. Page 95]

Mary Cuff Franey (hereinafter referred to as the testatrix), at the age of 75, suffered a heart attack on the afternoon of June 3, 1966, and died approximately three hours later. Testatrix was a widow who left no surviving children. A columnar ruled sheet of paper which was in the testatrix's handwriting on both sides of the sheet was offered to the Register of Wills for probate. The Register probated only that side of the paper which bore the signature of testatrix and the date " June 3, 1966," and the words "last will & testament."

Mary Cuff Kane, a niece of testatrix, filed an appeal from the probate in which she contended (a) that both sides of the aforesaid sheet of paper should have been probated or, in the alternative, (b) that a holographic, seven-page will*fn* dated March 10, 1966, which

[ 436 Pa. Page 96]

    appears to have been signed at the end thereof by Mary Cuff Franey and witnessed, represented testatrix's last will. Her appeal was dismissed by the Orphans' Court, and from its final decree she took this appeal.

The probated sheet of paper*fn** appears as follows:

The reverse side (which was not probated) of the sheet of paper appears as follows:

[ 436 Pa. Page 97]

[ 436 Pa. Page ...


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