Socialite, heiress, and jeans designer Gloria Vanderbilt has passed away at the age of 95 due to stomach cancer. Her son, CNN reporter Anderson Cooper confirmed the news and paid tribute to her in a special TV broadcast.
Anderson starts off by telling the story of how Gloria inherited her family fortune, her marriages, and the many hats she wore during her career. “Over the course of her life, my mom was photographed by all the great photographers. She worked as a painter, a writer, an actress, and designer,” he narrated.
In 1976, Gloria started her namesake brand which specialized in jeans that “really hug your derrière.” Back then, jeans were considered pieces for blue-collared workers. Thanks to Gloria’s brand and the various styles it’s offered, it’s become a staple in every American woman’s wardrobe. The Wall Street Journalnoted that, at its peak in 1980, the brand would generate over $200 million in sales.
To this day, Gloria Vanderbilt jeans is still going strong. It recently released a Spring 2019 collection.
Anderson talked about how her mom was always strong despite trials in her life. When she found out she had an advanced stage of stomach cancer earlier this month, she said, “Well, it’s like that old song: ‘Show me the way to get out of this world because that’s where everything is.'” It was followed with a clip of Gloria giggling while laying in a hospital bed.
“Gloria Vanderbilt died as she lived—on her own terms. I know she hoped for a little more time, a few days or weeks at least. There were paintings she wanted to make, more books she wanted to read, more dreams to dream. But she was ready to go,” Anderson said. “When the end came, she was not alone. She was surrounded by beauty and by family and by friends.”
Rest in peace, Gloria Vanderbilt, and condolences to her family.