this guy was an interesting crackpot who always did his his own thing! but i guess anybody who has a few billion bucks can do your own thing.

Hormel heir dies at age 77 Philanthropist had casual style

Kathy Shayna Shocket The Arizona Republic Feb. 13, 2006 12:00 AM

George Hormel, owner of the Wrigley Mansion and heir to the meat-packing Hormel Foods Corp., died Sunday at his home in Paradise Valley. He was 77.

Hormel, whose was known by everyone as Geordie, was known for his long, gray hair and casual style. Hormel donated generously to several Valley charities and often attended fund-raisers with his wife, Jamie.

He died after a short illness. He is survived by his wife, six children, eight grandchildren and two brothers.

After being hospitalized for a week with an infection, Hormel returned home last Monday. He died at 6 a.m. Sunday with his wife and family by his side.

"Jamie's last words to Geordie were, 'You're my best friend,' " said Celeste Nichols, a close friend. "Jamie brought him home so he could be surrounded by his family and the comforts of his own home for his last days."

Hormel moved to the Valley about 15 years ago and bought the 54,000-square-foot McCune Mansion, which he furnished with furniture from Terri's Consign & Design Furnishings.

In 1992, he bought the historic Wrigley Mansion, built by the chewing-gum magnate William Wrigley Jr. in the late 1920s, as a 50th wedding anniversary gift for his wife. He restored it to its original splendor featuring his private art collection.

Hormel was married four times. His first wife was actress Leslie Caron who starred in such films as An American in Paris and GiGi.

The artist and talented musician who owned the Village Recording Studio in Los Angeles often played piano at the Wrigley during Sunday brunch. The mansion houses a restaurant and hosts special events.

He frequently traveled with his family from the Valley to their home in Newport Beach, Calif., on one of his three tour-size buses. One bus has a small recording studio and a piano.

The funeral will be private. The date for a celebration of his life at the Wrigley Mansion will be announced. Donations can be made in George Hormel's name to Hospice of the Valley.

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