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  1. #1
    RamTime Guest

    Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    From "The League. The rise and decline of the NFL":

    The last person to see Carroll Rosenbloom alive was one Raymond Tanguay, a middle-aged French-Canadian tourist. Tanguay was standing on the beach. Rosenbloom was at least 150 yards out to sea, screaming for help. The Canadian charged into the water and fought his way out to where C.R. was, but his heroism was to no avail. Tanguay later estimated that Rosenbloom had been floating face down for 5 minutes before he reached him. "I took out a piece of wood," he remembered. "Three times I put the man on the wood, but every time the big rough wave take the man again into the water. I don't know how far out I was, but the people looked far, far away. I wanted to save him. I did everything I could, but it was not enough. I didn't catch him at a good time. The water was too much rough."

    Someone called the Golden Beach police about 2:00 PM and the chief and another officer rushed down to the water. "When we got to the beach," the chief reported, "we saw two men in heavy surf about 150 yards from the beach. One man was trying to support the other. We took off our clothes and went in the water, but by the time we got there, the other man was near exhaustion. There was no apparent sign of life [in Rosenbloom] when we got to him." Before Rosenbloom's body could be brought ashore, the rescuers were dragged almost 150 yards north along the face of the beach by the heavy seas.

    Georgia Rosenbloom was notified shortly thereafter. According to one source close to the Rosenbloom's, her first call was to Hugh Culverhouse, owner of the Tampa franchise and executor of Rosenbloom's estate. Culverhouse soon notified Rozelle. The commissioner, in turn, notified the rest of the league. "Everyone was very shocked that Carroll had died like that," remembered Rozelle. "No one could understand the drowning because Carroll had lived there in Golden Beach off and on for several years. They couldn't understand it." Gene Klein's response was typical. "I was shocked," he admitted. "Carroll wasn't a strong swimmer. It's hard to fathom him going out in the ocean in those circumstances." Still somewhat stunned, Rozelle spoke with the press that afternoon. "Carroll Rosenbloom played a major role in the growth and success of the NFL," the commissioner observed, "both through the teams he produced and through his active participation in the league's decision making process. We had some differences over things in the League that he felt affected his team adversely. I was very pleased that in the recent months it was considered past and gone and we had a very close relationship."

    Steve Rosenbloom learned of his father’s death after returning to the Rams offices on Pico Blvd. from an errand in the San Fernando Valley. When he walked in, Steve's pregnant wife, Renee, was there crying. Renee had got the news earlier but had been unable to find him. Steve immediately prepared to fly to Florida for a private funeral in accordance with Jewish ritual. First he met with members of the Rams coaching and office staff. "There's no danger of any changes," Steve reassured them. "C.R. wanted the team to remain with the Rosenbloom family and he's taken great care to make certain it would."

    Most Assumed the franchise would now pass to Steve.

    Like many assumptions about Carroll, it was off the mark. In fact, Rosenbloom left behind no sole heir to his football team. As part of a private trust activated before Carroll's death, Steve was charged with "managerial and operational" responsibility for the Rams, but actual controlling ownership was left to his widow, Georgia, who inherited seventy percent of the clubs stock. The remaining thirty percent was split equally among C.R.'s three children from his first marriage and his two from his second. “He wanted Georgia to have the income and status," Steve explained, "and he wanted me to run it. Carroll was into continuity. He wanted the Carroll Rosenbloom philosophy to carry on."

    Georgia, however, did not see herself in quite so passive a chief executive role. "I know what Carroll wanted," she pointed out to the LA Times several days after C.R.'s death. "Carroll knew he would live through me. He still runs the Rams. I'm just an extension of Carroll Rosenbloom. I don't want to sound kooky, but I feel as close to him as ever. We were never apart, you know. We talked over everything. It was Carroll's wish that the Rams continue as a closely knit family operation and I look forward to working with Steve."

    The two-headed organization Carroll Rosenbloom left behind was on shaky ground from its first day. Steve thought Georgia had been "good for my father", but was not otherwise close to his stepmother. At the family funeral in Florida, he was put off even further. "She was already into talking about the will," he claimed. "I thought it was in poor taste at best." When Steve asked to see his father’s body before it was cremated, Georgia objected and Steve viewed it anyway. Steve was even more upset by her behavior at the service itself. To start with, Georgia was more than an hour late and kept everyone else waiting, including Carroll's siblings, all in there seventies or older. Her attitude, according to Steve, was "less than the grieving widow. She was a grade B actress at best and she couldn't pull it off. She could have pretended to care at least. She didn't even talk to Carroll’s brothers."

    If Steve Rosenbloom was upset by what happened in Florida, the memorial ceremony Georgia staged back in LA positively turned his stomach. "C.R. didn't want a service," his son complained. "He told me and Georgia that at the same time. He didn't want a service, period. The thing she had was like a coming-out party. It was the sleaziest thing I've been to. There was dancing on the tennis court, for Christ's sake. It was no more Carroll than the man on the moon. It was pathetic."

    Georgia’s memorial service was held on April 11 at Carroll's Bel-Air estate. According to the Los Angeles Times. "The tribute was handled as a celebration of life rather than morning over death. All the music was upbeat and the tone, as set by Mrs. Rosenbloom, was light and loving." The eulogies were given beneath a large green and white striped party tent erected on a broad grassy tier behind the house. The NFL was represented by Pete Rozelle, Al Davis, Art Modell, Tex Schram, Hugh Culverhouse, Gene Klein, Billy Sullivan, Eddie DeBartolo, Leonard Tose, Max Winter, Robert Irsey, Art Rooney, and several others. According to one NFL source, Rozelle had been asked to speak but "shied away from the circus atmosphere." Anaheim, where the Rams where still going, was represented by Mayor John Seymour. Los Angeles was represented by Tom Bradley. Hollywood was represented by Warren Beaty, Kirk Douglas, Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart, Rod Steiger, and Henry Mancini.

    All of them waited under the green and white tent almost an hour before Georgia finally made her appearance. She then kicked things off with a welcoming speech. “Carroll didn't want any tears," she said. "He didn't like sad songs or sad endings." Then Georgia turned the ceremony over to the master of ceremonies, comedian Jonathan Winters. "He was a special man," Winters observed of the departed. "He wanted the super bowl more than I did." Winters was followed by ten other eulogists, including a rabbi, a priest, three football players, two actors, and two owners of football teams. The two owner’s football owners were Art Modell and Al Davis. Of the two, Davis' remarks were by far the more memorable.

    "Among the great people in my world," Al Davis observed, "Carroll Rosenbloom was the giant. It will never be over with me. Come autumn, and the roar of the crowd, I'll always think of him."

    Afterward, the memorial service. According to the Times', became "a buffet party" on the Rosenbloom tennis court, complete with "string orchestra," "festive flower-laden tables," and "strolling musicians." Georgia Rosenbloom was a charming hostess. Steve Rosenbloom left early.


  2. #2
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Thanks very much for posting this ramtime. This article is very interesting and clears up a lot of misconcenptions i had about the tragic death of rosenbloom.

    It would be nice to see some articles from around the time steve rosenbloom was deposed in favor of john shaw. I would love to know more about the circumstances. Was it a simple buyout, was the trust/will manipulated in some other way or did her 70% ownership simply give her the authority to make the change.

    I wonder how rams history might have changed if carrolls wishes to have steve continue to run the team had been carried out.

    ramming speed to all

    sign the big man, and long live marshall

    general counsel

  3. #3
    RamTime Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Steve Rosenbloom concures with the fact that CR wanted Georgia to have the status so I dont really see any monkey business manipulating the will. You are the lawyer here so you give it your best shot. Can a 70% owner of a corporation be mandated to keeping certain personel or was this wishful thinking on CR's part? Could it have been pillow talk between Georgia and CR in essense Georgia saying "Yes love if anything ever happens Steve will run the Rams he will carry on the Rosenbloom legend yada yada yada." I believe it was verbal between Georgia and CR probably right before Georgia stuck her head beneath the covers.

  4. #4
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    I have no way of knowing what the will said. 70% equity ownership is not by definition the same thing as voting control. It usually is of course, but there could be separate classes of stock that provide supervoting rights to minority equity holders, and there could certainly have been a provision of the will or some other shareholders agreement that put day to day control of the business in steve's hands and prevented georgia from making a change absent some form of gross negligence or willful misconduct. These types of arrangements are rare, but they do exist.

    The context of my question was whether steve and his brothers sold out to georgia as part of a negotiated deal when the change in day to day control occured.

    The real question is what did carroll want. If he wanted georgia to own the team and steve to run it, there were ways he could have provided for that legally. If he wanted that to be the case but didnt effectuate his intentions in a legal manner, ie via will or some of shareholders agreement or trust document, than its more of an ethical matter, ie did georgia disregard carrolls wishes, even if she had no legal obligation to fullfill them.

    ramming speed to all

    sign the big man

    long live marshall

    general counsel

  5. #5
    RamTime Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Sorry about that GC. I thought it was Avenger that answered my post. I am still getting to know this forum and when I saw Avengers handle (which I posted duh) I thought he may know because he is a lawyer that is why I replied in the fashion that I did. BTW are you a lawyer? With a handle like General Council I wonder.

    Anyway thanks for the info.
    Go Rams.

  6. #6
    RamTime Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Here is the short article regarding another one of the questions I submitted which obviously stumped the Herd.


    Back in 1977, Al Davis acted as an intermediary between Don Klosterman and Bill Walsh. Rams owner Carroll Rosenbloom was thinking about firing Chuck Knox because he hadn't made it to the Super Bowl. Klosterman asked Davis to inquire about Walsh. Walsh didn't want to get involved because he'd already accepted the Stanford head coaching job and thought it was unfair to Knox.

  7. #7
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Ramtime, i am an attorney, but by no means an expert of any kind on wills, trusts and estates. I am a transactional lawyer who works primarily in franchising and structuring corporate transactions.

    By the way, your reputation proceeds you on this board. For over a month people have been talking about how to persuade you to come over and join us. Now that you have made it, it is certainly a big plus for all of us. I look forward to ongoing spirited dialogue with you as we move forward Ramming together.

    Ramming speed to all

    sign the big man

    general counsel

  8. #8
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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    I don't suppose that anyone will ever know for sure what happened but there's one thing that really bugs me for some reason. I have to preface this by saying that I'm not a sexist.

    That being said, why did Georgia revert to her maiden name so quickly after acquiring the team? If she was really trying to honor and celebrate Carrol why not keep his name while profiting from the gold mine he left? To me, she acts like she really believes it's "her" team. Like she built it, or made the millions to acquire it.

    I have a very limited knowledge of this whole situation but my impression is that she did nothing more than spend a little time on her back and sucker an old lonely man out of his millions.

  9. #9
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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    LOL Moke... No comment...

    P.S. Hope you don't mind the nickname. If so, let me know...
    This space for rent...

  10. #10
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Moklerman, she did not revert to her maiden name, she remarried dominic frontierre. As you may recall, dominic was arrested allegedly scalping tickets to superbowl 14.

    ramming speed to all,

    sign the big man

    general counsel

  11. #11
    HUbison's Avatar
    HUbison is offline Superbowl MVP
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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    I have to be honest guys. Since I didn't pick up on the Rams until the move to the Lou, I had no idea some of this stuff had gone on. I had heard that Georgia inherited the team, but I didn't really know the circumstances.

    It sounds like things were really different under Rosenblumm. Were they?
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Quote Originally Posted by general counsel
    Moklerman, she did not revert to her maiden name, she remarried dominic frontierre. As you may recall, dominic was arrested allegedly scalping tickets to superbowl 14.

    ramming speed to all,

    sign the big man

    general counsel
    Now that is classy. (I can actually smell my own sarcasm)
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  13. #13
    general counsel Guest

    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    In terms of thing being different under rosenbloom, he owned the team from 1972, when he acquired it in a trade with robert irsay sr (irsay bought it from the reeves estate), until his death in april 1979. We won six straight division titles and reached the championship game several times. He was a beloved senior statesman who was actively involved in running the team.

    When georgia took over, there became a number of situations over the years where she was allegedly very tight with the cash. In the pre salary cap era, many blamed her failure to spend money for our lean years, especially since the rams were a very very profitable team due to their stadium deal in anaheim and later st louis. One of the allegations was that john shaw, who was running the team, was really a businessman rather than a football guy. When steve rosenbloom left, don klosterman, the charely armey of his day, left with him.

    It would be great to hear from others on the differences in how the team was run.


    ramming speed to all

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    moklerman's Avatar
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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    I didn't realize that Frontiere wasn't her maiden name, so I guess I was criticizing her for the right thing but the wrong reason. The fact that she was married so soon after his death is worse than just dropping his name to me. The more I find out about her the more I don't like.

    I have to admit that I don't know enough about the whole situation to make an educated decision though, as I started rooting for the Rams in 1979 when I was 8 years old and probably wouldn't have been able to grasp the nuansces of inheritance, widows re-marrying, etc., etc.

    Anyone and everyone who wants to keep filling us all in with more details would be greatly appreciated. I apologize if it's a re-hashing for some or bringing up painful memories for others but I'd really like to know more. To me, it's one of the most pivotal points in Rams history and I'd like to get the whole scoop.

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    Re: Avenger Post this at the Herd Board RE: The last person to see Rosenbloom alive.

    Quote Originally Posted by moklerman
    Anyone and everyone who wants to keep filling us all in with more details would be greatly appreciated. I apologize if it's a re-hashing for some or bringing up painful memories for others but I'd really like to know more. To me, it's one of the most pivotal points in Rams history and I'd like to get the whole scoop.

    And therein is the rub. It is only partly pivotal. Georgia did no more than the menfolk did 50 years prior. Moving the Rams from Cleveland set the stage for the questions about "business principles" vs loyalty vs ROI for entertainment. Did she not get what she should have been entitled to to stay in LA? She she have stayed and lost money? Do fans deserve corporate loyalty? Should the corporation have a social conscience? Are fans entitled to a sports identity? What are the Rams? Just the Horns as some have said?

    I have never been convinced that Georgia and Shaw have had the fans interests at heart as much as they should. But is that their job? Is the team a money-maker for shareholders ; the current political version of the Roman Coliseum to placate the masses; or, entertainment that doesn't come free? Where you line up on these questions I suspect will shape how you think the team has been handled over the years - right or wrong.

    I'm afraid no one will ever come clean and just say ... "as long as my job is secure ... I don't care if the team is moved to India to become the Dali Lama Rams ... to helll with what fans think ... that raise in personal seat license fees has yet to cover my bonus ... and I need it because I ain't got enough toys yet."

    Good luck molkerman in distilling history to find out how we got here ...

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