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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, January 16, 2021

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Sheldon G. Adelson, 19th richest AmericanNancy Bush Ellis, relative of two presidents, with brother George H. W. BushPat Loud, first reality TV star on first reality TV show, 'An American Family'Khalid bin Abdullah, Prince of Saudi ArabiaPrentice Sanders, first black police chief in San Francisco

Business and Science

Sheldon G. Adelson (87) casino magnate who grew up in a tough Boston neighborhood where his family lived in a one-bedroom tenement apartment and he slept on the floor with his sister and two brothers. As a youth he hawked newspapers on a street corner and later dabbled in the candy machine trade. That he would grow up to become one of America’s richest men whose faux Venetian palaces drew gamblers eager to beat the odds and Republican candidates anxious to win campaign jackpots became the stuff of legend. Adelson is listed by Forbes magazine as the 19th-richest American, with holdings estimated at $35.1 billion. After he took his Las Vegas Sands Corp. public in 2004, his wealth increased by $1 million an hour. During the 2008 recession, it plummeted for a time at $1,000 a second. In the primary and general elections of 2012, ’16, and ‘18, Adelson was far and away the top Republican political donor, giving a total of more than $302 million. He died in Malibu, California from complications related to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, on January 11, 2021.


Prentice Sanders (83) became San Francisco's first black police chief after working as a homicide detective on such infamous cases as the ‘70s Zebra murders, a six-month series of slayings that left at least 15 people dead and 10 wounded; four black men were convicted of the random attacks on white victims. Sanders was with the San Francisco Police Department for nearly 40 years and was chief from 2002–03. He was the first officer to testify in federal court about racism in the SFPD as part of a 1973 federal discrimination lawsuit filed by a group he helped to form, Officers for Justice. The case ended with the department accepting a consent decree that set new rules for hiring and promotions. Sanders also investigated the 101 California Street Shooting in 1993, where a gunman at an office building killed eight people and himself. He died of kidney failure in Burlingame, California on January 10, 2021.

News and Entertainment

Pat Loud (94) before The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, before the Kardashians, before the idea of living unscripted on camera became a TV staple, there was a program on public TV called An American Family with a female character named Pat Loud. She was a California mother of five who drank, plotted her divorce, and accepted her openly gay son, Lance. She did it all in Santa Barbara and on camera—in 1973. Loud was the first reality TV star on the first reality TV show—and she paid a price for breaking new ground. Critics called her materialistic and self-absorbed, an “affluent zombie,” one said. What wife and mother would do such a thing? Newsweek put Loud, her husband, Bill, and their children on its cover with the headline “The Broken Family.” Loud was 47 when the show that made her famous first aired, and she spent much of the rest of her life explaining why she had done it and how it had changed her family. Lance Loud died of hepatitis C in 2001; Bill Loud died in 2018. Pat Loud died in Los Angeles, California on January 10, 2021.

Politics and Military

Nancy Bush Ellis (94) sister of one US president (George H. W. Bush) and aunt of another (George W. Bush) who for a time devoted herself to Democrat causes despite her family dynasty’s Republican lineage. Smart, athletic, and outgoing, Ellis exuded the patrician charm of a bygone era. She was active at a time when public service was perceived as noble and politicians from the other party were not regarded as enemies. Unlike most of her family, Ellis was a liberal Democrat for decades, promoting environmental and antipoverty causes, raising money for the NAACP, and serving as head of the New England section of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund. She was hospitalized on December 30 with a fever and tested positive for the coronavirus. Her symptoms abated within days, but her general health was failing. She died in Concord, Massachusetts on January 10, 2021.


Khalid bin Abdullah, Prince of Saudi Arabia (83) Saudi prince who owned the Juddmonte Farms horse-racing operation, which produced superstar thoroughbreds like Frankel and Dancing Brave. A passionate supporter of horse racing as a young man, Prince Khalid founded Juddmonte in 1980 and oversaw the breeding of more than 440 winners—including 102 at top-tier Grade One level worldwide—who carried his green, pink, and white silks. Dancing Brave, bred in Kentucky, was his star horse in the ‘80s, winning the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 1986 and a string of major races in Britain that year including the 2,000 Guineas. Frankel, named after the late American trainer Bobby Frankel, is in contention as the greatest ever racehorse after an unbeaten career in which he won 14 races from 2010–12. Prince Khalid’s most recent superstar was Enable, whose wins included the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 2017 and ’18 and the Breeders’ Cup Turf in ’18. Prince Khalid died on January 12, 2021.

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