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Cooke’s Will Cuts Out Wife, Keeps Redskins in the Family

Washington Post

Thirteen weeks before he died, Jack Kent Cooke changed his will to deny fourth wife Marlene Ramallo Cooke any part of his estate, but the document creates a charitable foundation to help gifted and underprivileged children, according to papers filed Wednesday by Cooke’s lawyers.

The will filed in Fauquier County (Va.) Circuit Court also could set in motion the eventual sale of Cooke’s Washington Redskins, while positioning his one surviving son to be the team’s buyer.

Cooke gave son John Kent Cooke, president of the Redskins, $10 million outright and put $15 million in a trust for him and John’s wife, Rita. Cooke gave his 9-year-old daughter, Jacqueline, a trust fund of $5 million but gave nothing to the girl’s mother, Suzanne Elizabeth Martin.

Each of his five grandchildren received a $1-million trust fund. He also made bequests ranging from $10,000 to $500,000 to a dozen friends, relatives and employees.

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