After Its New Owner’s Untimely Death, Work Continues on the Bela Lugosi House
December 26, 2012 §
The Bela Lugosi House 12/14/12/Hope Anderson Productions
When the Bela Lugosi House in Hollywoodland changed hands last year, I was glad to find out the new owner had the means and will to repair decades of neglect, including a leaky roof and non-functional plumbing. He was David Copley, billionaire heir to the San Diego Union-Tribune fortune. I told Copley’s realtor, who also happens to be mine, “I’m looking forward to meeting him.” “Oh, you never will,” he replied. “Why? We share a property line.” “He has lots of other houses–he’ll never be here.”
Sadly, that prediction has turned out to be true: just before Thanksgiving, Copley died in a car crash after suffering a massive heart attack. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/26/us/san-diego-loses-a-newspaper-scion-david-copley.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0
At that point the house, after extensive structural repair, was getting a new slate roof. In the garden, a big hole had been dug for the pool. All work abruptly stopped for a time. Then, about three weeks ago, it resumed.
Although I’ll never meet David Copley, I’m grateful that his estate is continuing the renovation of his house. How tragic that he didn’t live to enjoy the result.