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Jean Paul Getty

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Balthazar Getty's Father, J. Paul Getty III, Dies

J. Paul Getty III Dies

Originally posted 02/08/2011 11:15AM

J. Paul Getty III, a grandson of oil magnate Jean Paul Getty and the victim of a 1973 kidnapping and mutilation that made headlines around the world, died Saturday in Buckinghamshire, England, after a lengthy illness, his actor-son, Balthazar Getty, said in a statement.

A father of two and a grandfather of six, Getty was 54 and "taught us how to live our lives and overcome obstacles and extreme adversity," said Balthazar, 36, reports the Los Angeles Times.

At the age of 16, Getty was abducted in Rome by kidnappers who said he was being held by the Mafia. His father and grandfather, then the richest man in the world (and notoriously the cheapest, with a pay phone in his London mansion), thought it a hoax and refused to pay the $3 million requested ransom. Four months later, they received a package containing a lock of hair and a human ear.

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