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Gloria Vanderbilt, New York Icon and Mother of CNN Anchor Anderson Cooper, Dead at 95


Gloria Vanderbilt, New York Icon and Mother of CNN Anchor Anderson Cooper, Dead at 95

Gloria Vanderbilt — the “poor little rich girl’’ who grew into a socialite fashion icon — died Monday.

Vanderbilt, a 95-year-old New York City native, had been diagnosed with “very advanced” stomach cancer earlier this month and passed away surrounded by family and friends, said her CNN journalist son, Anderson Cooper.

Vanderbilt was born into extreme privilegein New York City in 1924 as the great-great-granddaughter of railroad magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt.

But she was further proof that money can’t buy happiness.

Her father died when she was a baby, and at age 10, “Little Gloria” became embroiled in a bitter custody dispute between her mother, also Gloria, and a paternal aunt, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, prompting the press to dub the child the “poor little rich girl.’’

Her aunt ultimately won custody of her in court. Cooper said his mother “barely knew” Whitney, and her childhood nanny, whom Vanderbilt later described as “my lifeline,” was given the boot, leaving the little girl bereft.

She would spend the rest of her life seeking what she so “desperately craved” — a partner and family of her own, her son said.

Vanderbilt was married four times and had four sons.

Vanderbilt grew to fame in the fashion world in the 1970s and ’80s over her jeans.

But tragedy continued to follow her.

In 1988 in Manhattan, one of her sons, Carter, died by suicide from the balcony of her 14th-floor apartment.

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