Related topics

Cagney Leaves Child, Grandchildren Out of Will

May 6, 1986 GMT

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. (AP) _ Actor James Cagney left nothing to his only living child, and named his spokeswoman and her husband as executors of his estate, according to his will filed in Dutchess County Surrogate Court.

Cagney, who died March 30 at his farm, left his personal belongings - furniture, clothing, cars, jewelry, art - to his wife of 64 years, Frances ″Willie″ Cagney.

She still lives at the estate, Verney Farm in Standfordville.

Marguerite and Donald Zimmerman were named executors. Cagney left his estate to a trust of which the Zimmermans are trustees.


A copy of the trust was not filed so it was not known what property or money is part of it.

The movie star left his adopted daughter, Cathleen Cagney Thomas of California, and his grandchildren out of the will.

The will stated no reason for the exclusion of his daughter. About the grandchildren, however, it said, ″I have intentionally made no provision for any grandchild of mine because I believe it is the obligation of each parent to adequately provide for his own children during the parent’s lifetime just as I have done, and just as I believe my children should do for their children.″

The document is dated March 1982 and also excludes his adopted son, James Jr., who died in January 1984.

Cagney’s estate is thought to be worth between $500,000 and $1 million. A petition filed by the Zimmermans to declare the will valid says the estate is not worth more than $1 million.

Surrogate Court Chief Clerk John Atherton said a $600 fee paid for filing the Cagney will means the estate is worth more than $500,000.