WASHINGTON – Renowned philanthropist, banker and world’s oldest billionaire David Rockefeller breathed his last at the age of 101 here on Monday.
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Born in 1915, Rockefeller was an American banker who was chairman and chief executive of Chase Manhattan Corporation. He was the grandson of Standard Oil co-founder John D Rockefeller.
Rockefeller remained apolitical in his life but his two brothers served at political positions. Nelson Rockefeller served as governor of New York and briefly as US vice-president while Winthrop Rockefeller was the governor of Arkansas.
David Rockefeller graduated from Harvard in 1936 and received a doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago in 1940.
He then served in the army World War Two before working at Chase Bank, which later became JP Morgan Chase. He was also behind the project that led to the World Trade Center in New York City.
Rockefeller retired in 1980 as CEO and chairman Chase Manhattan after nearly nearly 35 years at the bank. But he was also well known for his charitable work.
He donated almost $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.
Former President George HW Bush and his wife, Barbara, released a statement saying they were “deeply saddened” by the passing of their “wonderful friend”.
“So many knew him as one of the most generous philanthropists – and brightest Points of Light – whose caring and commitment to the widest range of worthy causes touched and lifted innumerable lives,” the statement read.