Betsy Bloomingdale, Reagan friend and philanthropist, dies


LOS ANGELES (AP) — Betsy Bloomingdale, the widow of a department store heir who hobnobbed with the world’s elite and was best friends with former first lady Nancy Reagan, has died. She was 93.

Her daughter-in-law says Bloomingdale died Tuesday at her Los Angeles home from congestive heart failure.

Bloomingdale was married to Alfred S. Bloomingdale for about 36 years.

A socialite and philanthropist, she was renowned for her high-fashion style — she once was fined for a customs violation while bringing Dior gowns into the country.

She also was known for holding charity parties and entertaining Hollywood stars and world leaders.

After her husband’s death in 1982, she survived a scandal when his mistress, Vicki Morgan, sued her and the estate for cutting off her allowance. The lawsuit was dismissed.

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