Dateline Bethesda: Mall World, Isn't It?
The global economic crisis has hit home for Tom Friedman. When the New York Times columnist married heiress Ann Bucksbaum in 1978, he joined one of America's richest families: The Bucksbaums founded General Growth Properties, the shopping mall giant worth an estimated $4 billion just two years ago. Not that the Friedmans ever flashed around their wealth: Aside from a great big house in Bethesda, they've always kept a pretty low profile; she's a first-grade teacher in Montgomery County.
But their retirement fund probably just got smaller. In one of the largest real estate failures ever, GGP filed for Chapter 11 last week, and the Bucksbaum family fortune is now down to a measly $25 million. Friedman had no comment yesterday.
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