Homeless man who didn’t know he was millionaire is found dead before he could be told about his fortune: Body of ‘heir’ to $300m discovered frozen to death under railway bridge
A long-lost relative of the reclusive and eccentric New York heiress Huguette Clark, who stood to inherit $19 million of her $300 million fortune has been found dead from hypothermia in rural Wyoming.
Wealthy: Huguette Clark left an estate valued at $306.5million when she died last year
Timothy Henry Gray’s body was discovered by children sledding under a Union Pacific Railroad overpass in Evanston, in the southwest of the state on Thursday, as the temperatures hit 10 degrees.
Gray, 60, was the half great-nephew of Clark, who died in May 2011 aged 104 and tragically was unaware that he was potentially entitled to 6.25 percent of her copper mining fortune, which has been conservatively estimated at £307 million by the administrator of her estate.
Lieutenant Bull Jeffers of the Evanston Police Department said that there was no evidence of foul play involved in the death and that Gray was wearing a light jacket.
He added that it wasn’t clear if Gray was living under the overpass at the time of his death, however, other homeless people have been known to camp there during the year.
Tim Gray was an adopted great-grandson of former U.S. Senator William Andrews Clark, who made his reputation as one of the copper kings of Montana, who also diversified into banking, building, railroads and reserves special fame as the founder of Las Vegas.
The impressive senator’s youngest daughter lived as a recluse in New York City hospitals for 20 years until her death in 2011 while her palatial properties across the country sat unused.
Valuable: Ms Clark’s three apartments in this New York building are worth a total of $53million
Untouched: The heiress had not visited Bellosguardo in Santa Barbara, California since the 1950s
In her will, Huguette Clak bequeathed no money at all to her family, leaving it all instead to her nurse, goddaughter, attorney, accountant, hospital, doctor, favourite museum and various employees and an art foundation she wanted established at her oceanfront estate in Santa Barbara, California.
It is thought that not one of her relatives had seen her in 40 years, although some had tried to keep contact with her through holiday cards and the occasional phone calls.
Because they did not receive a penny in her will, 19 of Clark’s relatives stepped forward to challenge her will in a New York court.
A public administrator joined in on behalf of Gray who lawyers had tried to contact about the battle, but all they could find were belongings abandoned in a storage locker – private investigators were not able to find him.
Indeed, even if investigators could not contact Gray and he had been granted a share of the massive inheritance, his spouse or children would have been entitled to it – however he had no wife or kids.
In fact, in spite of his homelessness, Gray had access to money and the coroner said that Gray’s wallet contained a cashier’s check from 2003, for a ‘significant amount.’
Gray’s older brother, Jerry, said that Tim had worked as a cowboy and lived in the Rocky Mountain states most of his life.
‘He was homeless essentially,’ said Jerry to NBC News.
‘If we had proper mental health services in this country, we could have notified and known to do something.’