Actress Ruth Ford leaves $8.5M Dakota estate to her butler

May 11, 2010 10:19AM

When Ruth Ford, the late actress and wife of Hollywood star Zachary Scott, died last year at age 98, she left behind two apartments at the storied Dakota building at 1 West 72nd Street — to her Nepalese butler. Her will, accepted last month in the Surrogate’s Court in Manhattan, revealed that with the exception of her clothing and costume jewelry, Ford’s entire, $8.4 million estate has been turned over not to her daughter, Shelley Scott, or to either of her two grandchildren, but to Indra Tamang, the butler, cook and caretaker whom she employed for more than 30 years. Brokers told the Wall Street Journal that the Dakota’s co-op board was unlikely to allow a former staffer to live in the building. But that may not become an issue: the three-bedroom apartment has been on the market since December, now listed for $4.5 million after five price cuts. Tamang, 57, who owns a home in Woodside, Queens and became a U.S. citizen last year, said he is hoping to hold onto the second apartment for a while. [WSJ]