Friends of Chris Kyle are turning on his widow Taya, as new reports suggest she is not honoring the wishes of her late husband.
When Kyle wrote the book American Sniper, he refused to profit from it in any way, calling any money made from it “blood money.” Instead, he donated all proceeds to the families of two fallen SEAL member friends of his, Ryan Job and Marc Lee.
Back at Kyle’s funeral, Lee’s mother Debbie expressed how grateful she was to the war hero for helping out her family.
“I was speechless, overwhelmed and in tears,” she told the audience of mourners. “Chris didn’t publish that book for an income or to be famous. He hated the spotlight. Chris did that for his teammates.”
Today, with the bestselling book and hit movie, the American Sniper franchise has made over $6 million. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Taya is ignoring her husband’s wishes and has cut off the families of Job and Lee, instead pocketing the money herself.
Taya has paid neither the Lee family or Kelly Job, the widow of Ryan Job, who is also a single mother of a daughter. Though they are upset that they haven’t received even a small share of the proceeds, the Job and Lee families have not filed any lawsuit yet. Experts say they do not have a strong legal case, and each family has expressed that they don’t want to file a lawsuit against a high profile military widow.
“Whether [Taya] has a moral obligation is a whole different story, says Laura Zwicker, a Los Angeles attorney who specializes in estates and trusts. “Legally, all of the assets of the estate, including his intellectual property, would pass to [Taya] as his beneficiary.”
Perhaps Taya is reluctant to pay them the money since she is now looking out for herself and her children alone. After all, she is on the hook for over $1 million which she owes to Jesse Ventura after his successful lawsuit against her husband’s estate.
Do you think Taya should give the proceeds to the Lee and Job families like her husband wanted, or is she making the right decision? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.