Brooke Astor: 1902-2007

0813brookeastor.jpgLongtime New York philanthropist Brooke Astor passed away at the age of 105 this afternoon. The Times, of course, had the obituary ready:

“For decades she had been known as the city’s unofficial first lady, one who moved effortlessly from the sumptuous apartments of Fifth Avenue to the ragged barrios of East Harlem, deploying her inherited millions to help the poor help themselves.
Among the rich of New York, she was perhaps the last bridge to the Gilded Age, when “society” was a closed world of old-money families, the so-called Four Hundred, ruled over by a grandmother of Mrs. Astor’s by marriage, Mrs. William Backhouse Astor.

The big question from here is how New York’s media will tackle the neglect lawsuit involving her son in Tuesday’s papers.

One of New York’s great personalities, she will be missed.

— Neal Ungerleider