David Rockefeller, philanthropist and banker - obituary

David Rockefeller a billionaire philanthropist, who was the oldest member of the vaunted Rockefeller family, has died at the age of 101.

Mr Rockefeller died at his home in Pocantico Hills, New York, a family spokesman confirmed.

Rockefeller joined The Chase National Bank in 1946, became a vice president in 1949 and senior vice president in 1952.

Rockefeller retired in 1980 as CEO and chairman Chase Manhattan after almost nearly 35 years at the bank.

Rockefeller, who controlled Chase Manhattan bank for more than a decade, was the grandson of Standard Oil co-founder John D Rockefeller.

He was the last surviving grandchild of John D. Rockefeller, who started the oil empire that today includes both Exxon Mobil and Chevron.

The renowned capitalist supported the assistance of economies overseas, arguing that it would create customers for American products. He retired in 1981 at 65.

Nelson Rockefeller served as governor of NY and briefly as United States vice-president while Winthrop Rockefeller was the governor of Arkansas.

He also was viewed with anger on the right for pushing to open trade with China and the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

Rockefeller collected beetles as a lifelong hobby and also acquired art - a Mark Rothko painting he bought in 1960 for less than $10,000 was auctioned for more than $72 million in May 2007.

His charitable service earned him a Presidential Medal of Freedom, the country's highest civilian honour, in 1998.

Rockefeller and his wife, the former Margaret McGrath, were married in 1940 and had six children - David Jr., Richard, Abby, Neva, Margaret and Eileen. She died in 1996.

  • Todd Kelly