Celebrity | Television

Gloria Vanderbilt, Heiress & Mother To Anderson Cooper Has Died

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Gloria Vanderbilt died Monday morning, according to her son, CNN's Anderson Cooper. She was 95.

The American artist, author, actress, fashion designer, heiress and socialite was born in 1924.

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Gloria, the mother of Anderson Cooper, was a woman of many trades, including model, fashion designer and actress.  She was also one of the biggest socialites in New York City.

During the 1930s she was the subject of a high-profile child custody trial in which her mother, Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt, and her paternal aunt, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, each sought custody of her and control over her trust fund.

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As an adult in the 1970s, Vanderbilt became known in connection with a line of fashions, perfumes, and household goods bearing her name. She was particularly noted as an early developer of designer blue jeans. 1974 saw the release of the Paul McCartney single Mrs. Vandebilt, inspired by, and loosely based on the life of Gloria.

Most people don't know about the family tragedy that rocked Anderson Cooper's life and forever changed the relationship he had with his mother, Gloria Vanderbilt.

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On July 22, 1988, Carter Cooper, Anderson's older brother, committed suicide at the age of 23 by jumping from the family's 14th-floor apartment.

He wasn't alone though, in his final moments, Vanderbilt was with him on the balcony, trying to talk him out of what he was about to do.

Vanderbilt died at home with friends and family at her side.

"Gloria Vanderbilt was an extraordinary woman, who loved life, and lived it on her own terms," Cooper said in a statement. "She was a painter, a writer, and designer but also a remarkable mother, wife, and friend. She was 95 years old, but ask anyone close to her, and they'd tell you, she was the youngest person they knew, the coolest, and most modern."

Head of Content, reality TV watcher and lover of cookies. emma@shared.com