Gloria Vanderbilt has left almost her entire fortune to her youngest son, Anderson Cooper, despite the fact that he grew up thinking there was no inheritance waiting for him. According to her will, which was filed in Manhattan surrogate court earlier this week, the late heiress and fashion icon left her Midtown Manhattan residence at 30 Beekman Place to eldest son, Leopold “Stan” Stokowski, but stipulated that “all the rest” of her property would go to her wealthy CNN host son, Anderson, Page Six reports.
Gloria Vanderbilt, who died in June at age 95, reportedly left nothing at all to her estranged middle son, Christopher Stokowski. While it is unclear what or how much money Anderson Cooper will receive from his mother’s estate, Vanderbilt’s fortune has been estimated at approximately $200 million.
Interestingly, Anderson Cooper previously told radio host Howard Stern that he didn’t expect to inherit his mother’s fortune, and that he doesn’t even believe in inheriting money.
“My mom’s made clear to me that there’s no trust fund. There’s none of that.” Cooper said in 2014.
“I don’t believe in inheriting money… I think it’s an initiative sucker. I think it’s a curse… From the time I was growing up, if I felt like there was some pot of gold waiting for me, I don’t know if I would have been so motivated.”
Gloria Vanderbilt had four sons, but she was notoriously close to Anderson, the youngest of her two sons with her fourth husband, Wyatt Cooper. Gloria and Anderson went on to make a documentary and pen the 2016 memoir The Rainbow Come and Goes together.
Sadly, Gloria’s other son, Carter Cooper, committed suicide in 1988 at age 23. And while she maintained a lifelong relationship with her oldest son, Stan – her first child with second husband, Leopold Stokowski – Gloria had been estranged from her second eldest son, Christopher, for decades.
As a child, Anderson Cooper was reportedly very close to his older brother, Christopher, despite their 15 year age difference. However, Chris reportedly abandoned the family in 1978 after his mother’s therapist, Dr. Christ L. Zois, became overly involved in his personal life, according to Page Six. Chris Stokowski was 26-years-old when Gloria Vanderbilt’s therapist allegedly interfered with his relationship with his then-fiancée, April Sandmeyer. The bizarre incident resulted in a lawsuit, in which Vanderbilt eventually won a $1.5 million judgment against Zois and a lawyer she accused of “preying on her wealth and emotional fragility.”
Anderson Cooper told Page Six that he “did reconnect and reconcile” with his long-lost half brother after releasing Nothing Left Unsaid, a 2016 documentary about their famous mother. Nothing Left Unsaid did not address Gloria Vanderbilt’s decades-long estrangement from her son, reportedly out of respect for his privacy, but Anderson revealed that he and Gloria saw Chris several times after the film was released.
According to The Daily Mail, Chris Stokowski lives off the estate of his late father, composer Leopold Stokowski, who died in 1977.