For starters, there was $12 million for her personal Maltese, Trouble, who now requires $100,000 of security a year because of outraged death threats. Then there is the $5-$8 billion trust, which is still in probate, but will be donated to charities that benefit dogs. NYT:
[Leona Helmsley’s] instructions, specified in a two-page “mission statement,” are that the entire trust, valued at $5 billion to $8 billion and amounting to virtually all her estate, be used for the care and welfare of dogs…
The two people who described the statement said Mrs. Helmsley signed it in 2003 to establish goals for the multibillion-dollar trust that would disburse assets after her death.
The first goal was to help indigent people, the second to provide for the care and welfare of dogs. A year later, they said, she deleted the first goal…
[T]he trust will be worth almost 10 times the combined assets of all 7,381 animal-related nonprofit groups reporting to the Internal Revenue Service in 2005…
[The judge in the case] agreed to a settlement between the trustees and two of Mrs. Helmsley’s grandchildren who were explicitly left out of her will. The agreement gave those grandchildren $6 million each.
And then there’s this:
Her goal of helping dogs was not Mrs. Helmsley’s only posthumous quirk. In her will, she ordered that her tomb, in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., be “acid-washed or steam-cleaned” once a year.
She also made two grandchildren’s combined $10 million inheritance contingent on their visiting their father’s grave, requiring that a registration book be placed in the mausoleum to prove that they had shown up.
Photo: Jennifer Graylock/Associated Press
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