FORT WORTH, Texas—Nancy Lee Bass, philanthropist and matriarch of Fort Worth's leading family, has died a week before her 96th birthday.

Longtime family friend and attorney Dee J. Kelly Sr. says the widow of prominent oil billionaire Perry R. Bass died at her Fort Worth home Thursday night after a brief illness.

Perry Bass, nephew and heir to the oil fortune of famed Fort Worth wildcatter Sid Richardson, died in 2006 at age 91. Over the years, the Basses played host to five presidents.

The Basses four sons—Sid, Ed, Bob and Lee—have lavished funds on Fort Worth's artistic, cultural and educational institutions for years. They've also bought up and redeveloped much of downtown Fort Worth into one of the most vibrant city centers in Texas.


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