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Saratoga Queen Marylou Whitney remembered at opening of new 'Women in Racing' exhibit

July 20, 2019 08:58 AM

Saratoga socialite Marylou Whitney has died. She was 93 years old.

She'd been sick for some time but her husband, John Hendrickson said recently she was still hoping to get to her beloved Saratoga this summer.

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Marylou Whitney's philanthropy is the stuff of legend. Donating millions of dollars to health care and children's causes. She more than anyone was responsible for Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Marylou Whitney and her husband, Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney, first came to Saratoga in the 1950s.  She was a founder of the National Museum of Dance and Hall of Fame. She was also supportive of Saratoga Hospital, where the cardiac catheterization lab is named in her honor.

She and her husband, John Hendrickson initiated the Backstretch Appreciation program to benefit backstretch workers who work at Saratoga Race Course. Each night, they hold activities like dinners and bingo and karaoke for 2,000 employees.  In 2015, Marylou and her husband, John Hendrickson, donated the cost to build Centennial Park in Saratoga Springs as a gift to the city for its 100th anniversary.

Credits

WNYT Staff

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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