American woman donates money in her will Cologne Zoo inherits 26 million US dollars
Cologne · A native of Cologne in the USA has left Cologne Zoo an inheritance worth millions. The money is to be used for animal husbandry.
A US-American woman has left Cologne Zoo an inheritance of around 26 million US dollars. Elizabeth Reichert, a millionaire born in Cologne, died in mid-February 2022 and included the zoo in her inheritance. This was now announced by the zoo.
However, Cologne Zoo will not receive the sum as a one-time payment. Instead, it is the basis of a foundation from which the zoo now receives a dividend distribution every year. The first distribution of 700,000 US dollars has been received in the meantime. According to the wishes of the deceased, the money is to be used exclusively for the zoo's animal husbandry development.
The annual dividend distribution is expected to rise to between 1 and 1.5 million euros in the coming years, depending on the development of the capital markets. According to the zoo, the difference between the first dividend and the expected future income is due to the fact that a significant part of the assets could only be transferred to the foundation during the year after Mrs. Reichert's death.
A last thank you to her homeland
Elizabeth Reichert emigrated to the USA after the Second World War together with her husband Arnulf (1924 to 1998). They survived the war in Germany only thanks to the help of courageous Cologne residents who offered Arnulf Reichert, a Jew, hiding places.
In the United States, Arnulf and Elizabeth Reichert built up a wholesale pet shop. The childless couple considered Cologne Zoo because of their gratitude to Cologne and their love of animals, according to the zoo's press office. They also chose Cologne Zoo because they want to use their inheritance to benefit as many people in the Rhineland as possible in the long term, they said. The zoo has around one million visitors a year.