A little over a month ago, this blog posted a couple of times about Millvina Dean, the last living survivor of the Titanic, who was facing a financial crisis about nursing home costs and selling her remaining memorabilia from the sinking to cover it.
Like so many others, her retirement and health care expense problems are over now, but not this side of the grave.
In April 2009, in response to her plight, three Titanic societies, the Belfast, British and International, set up The Millvina Fund to help with her expenses. Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, the leading stars of the movie Titanic, James Cameron its director, and Celine Dion who sang its hit theme song, each donated $10K, in response to a challenge from Irish author Don Mullan who had sold an edition of special photography of her for the Fund.
At Mullan's suggestion, remaining funds will be donated 80% to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, which operates lifeboat and lifeguard stations on the coasts of the British isles with an average of 22 people saved every day, and 20% for care of the graves of the victims of the sinking.
Millvina Dean passed away 0800 on 31 May 2009.
The hull of the Titanic was launched 31 May 1911.
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