If you could name anyone to serve as the Executor of our estate, you would probably feel comfortable about nominating the sitting Vice President of the United States of America. This is especially true if that Vice President was Thomas Jefferson and your Will included a significant amount of money that was to be used to purchase slaves, free them and educate them to be good citizens. This would seem like a task that Jefferson would have been uniquely able to carry out.
In 1798 Tadeusz Kosciuszko did name then Vice President Jefferson to be the Executor of his Will and did leave money to free slaves. It was an excellent choice for an Executor at the time. However, Kosciuszko did not pass away until 1817. By then, Jefferson’s health was failing and he had to decline to serve as the Executor. No one can know for sure what would have happened had Jefferson served. What we do know is that eventually there was litigation over the estate and none of the money went toward freeing slaves.
The important thing to learn from this is that you should not only update your Will when the circumstances of your life change, you should also update when there is a significant change in the circumstances of your intended Executor.