'Happy' Rockefeller, widow of former vice president, dies

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TARRYTOWN, N.Y. (AP) — The widow of former U.S. Vice President and New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller has died. Margaretta "Happy" Rockefeller was 88.

A Rockefeller family spokesman says she died peacefully in her sleep Tuesday at her home in Tarrytown, New York. She had suffered from a brief illness.

Both she and the New York governor were divorced from previous spouses when they married in 1963. That was seen as scandalous at the time, and political pundits blamed the marriage for Nelson Rockefeller's failure to secure the 1964 Republican presidential nomination.

At that time, no divorced candidate had ever won the presidency.

Happy Rockefeller was a well-known socialite and among the first women to publicly speak about her breast cancer diagnosis in the 1970s.

She is survived by five children.

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