David Rockefeller

Billionaire philanthropist and the former head of Chase Manhattan Corp David Rockefeller has died at the age of 101, a family spokesman said.

The patriarch of the Rockefeller family passed away on Monday in his sleep of congestive heart failure at his home in Pocantico Hills, New York.

He was the last surviving grandson of John D. Rockefeller, a 19th-century oil tycoon who amassed a huge fortune that made him America’s first billionaire and his family one of the most popular, powerful and richest in the nation’s history.

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David was born in Manhattan, New York as the youngest of six siblings. He lived all his life in baronial splendor and privilege in both Manhattan and at the magnificent countryside estates in which the family owned.

He earned a degree from Harvard University in 1936 and did graduate work at the London School of Economics with future President John F. Kennedy.

A few years later in 1940, he was awarded a PhD in economics from the University of Chicago.

David Rockefeller has reportedly given away nearly $2 billion in his lifetime and served as chairman and chief executive of Chase from 1969 to 1981. During his time in that position in the bank long known as the Rockefeller bank, he forged a network of close relationships with governments and multinational corporations in and outside the United States taking his influence to great heights.

David became a force in global financial affairs and in his country’s foreign policy as he was accorded with chief of state honors when he arrived foreign capitals.

He also founded a group called The Trilateral Commission in 1973 to foster relations between North America, Japan and Western Europe which brought conspiracy theories that he was trying to create a one-world government.

According to Forbes magazine, his fortune: investments in real estate, share of family trusts and other holdings is estimated at $3.3 billion in March 2017.

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His brother, Nelson Rockefeller, served as vice president under US President Gerald Ford after being elected as governor of New York for four terms starting in 1959. David Rockefeller’s nephew, Jay Rockefeller, was a longtime US senator from West Virginia.

David Rockefeller established several international and philanthropic associations including the Americas Society and the New York City Partnership to help the city’s poor.

He is survived by six children and 10 grandchildren.