UPDATE: Details Emerge in the Fight Over Evalena Fisher's $32 Million Will
SAN ANGELO, TX — The descendants of the late Evalena Fisher are contesting a will that is being probated in Tom Green County which leaves her $32 million estate to Blaine Ryan Smith at Rio Concho Communities of San Angelo.
According to an answer and counterclaim filed by attorney Jeff Chandler, who represents the surviving heirs, the will was filed with the Tom Green County Clerk's office is dated June 20, 2011 and, "proposes to dispose of Aunt Evalena's estate, which is valued at over $32 million. A non-family-member and employee of Aunt Evalena's retirement community, Blaine Ryan Smith, seeks to benefit and receive 'all of the real property, including all interests in oil, gas and other minerals' conservatively estimated at over $9 million, plus accrued oil and gas royalty production existing prior to Aunt Evalena's death of over $750,000 (and millions that have accrued since her death)."
Fisher died on May 1, 2017 and Troyce Wilcox, listed as an independent executor of the estate, filed an application to probate her purported will signed on June 22, 2011. Her relatives contend Aunt Evalena was blind and unable to understand the new wlll at that time.
The counterclaim contends Smith exerted undue influence on Fisher which led to mistakes of fact in the new will. Fisher had a previous will dated in 1995 which left her estate to her family of six surviving heirs. The surviving family members listed in the counter claim include nieces Nancy Pridy, Linda Layda and Marlena Blowey; nephews William Edgar Blowey and William Earl Blowey, and four grandchildren of Joseph Edgar Blowey who preceded Fisher in death.
Smith was listed on Rio Concho's IRS 990 form as assistant executive director of the non-profit retirement community called Rio Concho, Inc. in 2017 when the will was originally presented to Judge Penny Robert's county court. Troyce Wilcox was also listed as affiliated with the non-profit that year.
The lawsuit filed by Chandler claims Smith had served as executer or trustee for three other residents who passed away while living at Rio Concho West, a property operated by Rio Concho, Inc. according to their website.
The counterclaim was filed May 24, 2019 in the court of Tom Green County Court-at-law #2 Judge Penny Roberts.
UPDATE Wed. 5/29/19 10 a.m.
Blaine Ryan Smith is no longer employed by Rio Concho Communities. According to an attorney for the non-profit, Smith ceased working Rio Concho in Dec. 2018.
Get more stories like this by signing up for our daily newsletter, The LIVE! Daily.