Billionaire David Rockefeller Dies at Age 101

Billionaire philanthropist David Rockefeller has died at the age of 101.

He died in his sleep Monday morning of congestive heart failure at his home in Westchester County, New York, according to family spokesman, Fraser P. Seitel.

One of the few remaining links to the U.S. After the war ended in 1946, Rockefeller became a part of the family-associated Chase National Bank. He also had a nephew, Jay Rockefeller, who served as US senator from West Virginia.

Under Rockefeller, Chase was the first USA bank to open offices in the Soviet Union and China and, in 1974, the first to open an office in Egypt after the Suez crisis of 1956.

In 1973, he formed the Trilateral Commission, a private organization to encourage greater cooperation between Japan, North America (Canada and the United States) and Europe (European Union countries).

"He is perhaps most infamous for helping to precipitate the Iran hostage crisis by encouraging President Jimmy Carter to admit the shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, to the US for hospital treatment", Forbes said.

Rockefeller's grandfather, John D. Rockefeller, was the major shareholder of what was once the largest oil refiner in the world.

David Rockefeller, however, wielded power and influence without ever seeking public office.

He was born in New York City on June 12, 1915, the youngest of six children.

He also gave Harvard a $100 million donation in 2008. At the time of his death, David was personally worth $2.9 billion.

He donated nearly $2 billion to a wide range of institutions, including The Rockefeller University, Harvard University, the Museum of Modern Art, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Council on Foreign Relations. On his 100th birthday in 2015, David announced that he was donating 1000 acres of land in ME next to a National Park to create an even larger area for the public to enjoy.

Rockefeller established several global and philanthropic associations: the Americas Society, the weighty Trilateral Commission to promote cooperation between North America, Europe and Japan, and the New York City Partnership to help the city's poor. Chase eventually merged with The Manhattan Company to become Chase Manhattan. From Washington to New York City government to capitals around the world, his influence was far flung and included banking, education and the art world. He served in the Army during World War II, then began climbing the ranks of management at Chase Bank.

He published his autobiography, "Memoirs", in 2002 and continued going to work every day into his 90s.

Rockefeller graduated from Harvard in 1936 and received a doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago in 1940. Nelson (1908 - 1979) was a vice president of the United States (1974 - 1977) under President Gerald Ford and a NY governor (1959 - 1973). Rockefeller was awarded the French Legion of Honor. His wife, an active conservationist, died in 1996.

David was the oldest of six children.



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