LOS ANGELES — Margie McNally Petersen, a philanthropist who established the Petersen Automotive Museum with her late husband Robert Petersen in Los Angeles, has died after a battle with breast cancer. Petersen was 76.
Born in New York on June 24, 1935, Margie McNally worked as a model before meeting her future husband. He proposed to her after their first date, and they were married in 1963, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times. Her husband, a former Hollywood publicist, made his fortune publishing Hot Rod, Motor Trend and other magazines, the report noted.
In addition to founding the museum, the Petersens continued to donate large sums to the museum, including $25 million in 2000 to create a nonprofit foundation to care for the collection. The Los Angeles Times also reported that earlier this year, Margie Petersen made a gift through the Margie and Robert E. Petersen Foundation to the museum that totaled $100 million and comprised 135 cars, the building itself and cash.
To read Mrs. Petersen’s complete obituary in the Los Angeles Times, click here.