Archive for the ‘Charles Percy’ Category

9:41 a.m. CDT    September 17, 2011

Charles H. Percy, a brilliant businessman who represented Illinois for nearly 20 years in the U.S.
, once headed the chamber’s powerful Foreign Relations Committee, and
harbored unrealized ambitions to run for the presidency, died early Saturday. He was 91.

Percy died at 2:30 a.m. Eastern time at a Washington D.C.
hospice, according to Kate Kelly, a spokeswoman with WETA, the public
broadcasting station in Washington D.C., where Percy’s daughter, Sharon
Rockefeller is president and CEO.

Percy, a moderate Republican, entered
the Senate in 1966 after defeating one liberal icon, the late Paul Douglas. But
he was ousted by the state’s voters when they elected another Democratic icon,
the late Paul Simon,
in 1984.

Percy was an ardent opponent of the Vietnam
, a supporter of international nuclear non-proliferation, a backer of
federal consumer protection efforts and tougher enforcement of laws against drug
. He also was the first senator to call for a special prosecutor to
investigate Watergate, the political dirty tricks scandal that brought down Richard
’s presidency.

In March 2009, Percy’s daughter, Sharon, the wife
of Sen. John D. Rockefeller, D-W.Va., disclosed publicly that the former senator
had Alzheimer’s disease. Speaking to the National Alzheimer’s Association, she
described him at that time as “still the same sweet, deeply religious man he
always was, with a core presence that’s as magnetic as ever.”

Percy, a
Christian Scientist who neither drank alcohol nor smoked, was an avid health
advocate. No day on the campaign trail began without Percy swimming laps in a
hotel pool.

Percy became chief executive of Bell & Howell Corp., then
a manufacturer of projectors, cameras and other motion-picture equipment, in
1949 at the age of 29, becoming the youngest person to head a major corporation
at that time. He resigned in 1963 to make his first bid for major elective
office, an unsuccessful run for governor against the late Democratic Gov. Otto

But even before launching his political career, Percy was
seen as a potential president of the United States by such influential admirers
as former President
Dwight D. Eisenhower
. He was only 40 years old and never had held public
office when Richard Nixon approached him about the vice presidency in 1960. Soon
afterward, John Kennedy rated Percy one of the most promising newcomers on the
political scene.

In the mid-1960s, Percy made the cover of Time magazine
as heir apparent to the Nelson Rockefeller wing of the Republican
. In 1968, Percy was touted by the New
York Times
’ James Reston as “the hottest political article in the Republican
Party.” Barry Goldwater suggested that Percy could be his party’s most
formidable candidate. And Nixon thought the freshman senator from Illinois was
his most threatening rival for the nomination.

“Percy and Nixon are two
to one” odds for the nomination, Nixon observed privately in the winter of 1967.
Reagan is four to one. Rocky (Nelson Rockefeller) has no chance at

But in a private meeting with Nixon, the Illinois senator took
himself out of contention for the nomination, saying that he lacked experience
for the presidency. Though Percy was eager to be considered for the vice
presidency, he killed his chances by supporting Rockefeller over Nixon for the
presidential nomination. Many conservatives never forgave him and Nixon
regularly disparaged him, including placing Percy on his “enemies”

Still, Percy’s independence proved to be a political asset. He won
re-election to the Senate in 1972 by more than 1 million votes, the largest
plurality of any Senate candidate in the nation that year. Almost overnight,
Percy started campaigning for the 1976 presidential nomination, eventually
forming an exploratory committee. But his White
dreams were shattered in 1974 by Nixon’s resignation and the decision
of the new president, Gerald
, to seek a full term. Percy threw his support to Ford.

One of
his most influential actions as senator was his recommendation in 1970 that
James R. Thompson become first assistant U.S. attorney inChicago. It was part of
a deal which, in turn, would lead to Thompson becoming the top federal
prosecutor and later the state’s longest serving governor. Other Thompson
assistants were later elevated by Percy to the U.S. attorney’s

“He didn’t have to listen to me on a choice of a U.S. attorney or
a choice of a judge,” Thompson said. “But he was always willing to listen and go
to bat for good people and as a result, we got good people on the district and
appellate court and in the U.S. attorney’s office.”

Percy also chose Chicago lawyer John Paul Stevens
and recommended him to the White House for the U.S. Court of Appeals bench
in Chicago in 1970. Stevens later became a U.S.
Supreme Court
justice until his retirement last year.

A moderate,
Percy was disdained for much of his career by conservative Republicans
nationally and in his home state. He stated throughout his political career that
one of his main goals was to broaden the base of the Republican Party and to
make it comfortable with diverse points of view.

Because of Sen. Percy’s
wealth, his address (which for much of his adult life was the affluent suburb of
Kenilworth) and his youthful looks and smooth demeanor, he was often viewed as
coming from easy street.

Yet Percy’s life was one of self-built business
and political successes, mixed with personal sorrow and tragedy.

Sept. 27, 1919, in Pensacola, Fla., Percy and his family moved to Rogers
when he was a baby. His father, Edward, was a cashier in the Rogers Park
Bank. But the bank failed in the Great Depression and Percy’s
father spent the family’s savings and was forced into bankruptcy and on

Percy attended Sullivan High School in Rogers Park for the first
two years and New Trier High School for the last two years. The family had moved
to Wilmette in 1935 after the father found temporary employment.

1937 to 1941, he worked his way through the University
of Chicago
on a half-tuition scholarship. His grades were average, but he
waited on tables, worked in the library and operated a variety of businesses on
campus, including selling supplies to fraternity houses and residence

After working at Bell & Howell during the summers, he joined
the company full time in 1941 after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in
economics. In 1943 he became an ensign in the Navy and married Jeanne Dickerson,
whom he had met at New Trier High School. By 1947, when Percy was back with Bell
& Howell, the family had three children. His wife died that year of a
reaction to penicillin. In 1950, Percy married Loraine Guyer, daughter of a West
Coast investment banker.

Percy began his political career in a small way,
working as a Republican precinct captain in Kenilworth. In 1955 he was named
finance chairman for the Republican Party in Illinois, a role he was apparently
talked into by President Dwight Eisenhower.

“That began my life in
politics,” Percy said.

After losing his bid for governor against Kerner
in 1964, Percy took on the three-term Douglas, one of his former University of
Chicago professors, for the Senate in 1966. The campaign represents contrasts of
age as well as Douglas’ staunch support for then-President
Lyndon Johnson
’s escalation of the war in Vietnam.

Percy was slightly
ahead in the polls when both sides’ campaigns were brought to a halt

On Sept. 18, 1966, Valerie Percy, the twin sister of daughter
Sharon, was beaten and stabbed to death in her bed by an invader who got into
the family’s Kenilworth estate. No arrests were ever made, although there were
hundreds of investigations.

Douglas later said his decision to
voluntarily stop campaigning hurt his re-election chances and the murder of
Percy’s daughter dominated the news until Election Day. On that day, Percy
outpolled Douglas by 422,302 votes.

In 1972, Percy gave up a coveted seat
on the Senate Appropriations Committee in favor of the Foreign Relations
Committee. When Republicans won the Senate in 1980, he became the committee’s
chairman and basked in telling supporters and friends of the kings, presidents,
and prime ministers he had met.

But his chairmanship of the powerful
committee also created political risks. In his 1984 re-election bid, he was
forced to fend off a conservative primary challenge from a four-term west
suburban congressman. And Percy’s bid for a fourth term was frequently
challenged by the criticism that he knew Paris, France, better than he knew
Paris, Illinois.

In facing Simon, Percy found himself defending
allegations that he held limited interest in state affairs while enjoying
attention on a national stage. At the same time, the senator found himself the
subject of an attack ad financed by a businessman from California unhappy with
Percy’s stand on Israel and other matters. The ads portrayed Percy as a
chameleon, changing his colors on various issues.

After a bruising
campaign, Simon defeated Percy by a narrow margin. After his loss, Percy
remained in Washington where he launched his own consulting firm, Charles Percy
& Associates Inc., which was involved in encouraging U.S. exports.

Percy’s family will be holding a private service,
Kate Kelly said.  In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in the name of
Charles H. Percy to The Friends of Georgetown
Waterfront Par, P.O. Box 3653, Washington, D.C.
20027, or WETA, 3939 Campbell Avenue, Arlington, VA 22206.



Charles Harting Percy was born on September 27th, 1919 according to

September 27th, 1919

9 + 27 +1+9+1+9 = 56 = his life lesson = what he was here to learn = Peacemaker.  Decisions.  Decisive.  Diplomatic.


September 27th, 1919

27 +1+9+1+9 = 47 = his “secret” number = Famous.  Name & fame.  Notoriety.  Name recognition.  (Inter)nationally known.  High profile.  VIP.  Well-known.  Household name.  Public life.  Limelight.  Legendary.  Notable.  Noteworthy.  Eminent.  Prominent.  Legacy.




find out your own numerology at:


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