posted on Mar, 2 2004 @ 04:33 PM
Marge Schott, the tough-talking, chain-smoking owner of the Cincinnati Reds who won a World Series but was repeatedly suspended for offensive remarks,
died Tuesday, a hospital spokeswoman said. She was 75.
Schott was hospitalized about three weeks ago for breathing difficulties and repeatedly needed treatment for lung problems in recent years. Christ
Hospital spokeswoman Dona Buckler did not release a cause of death. Schott had reportedly been on a ventilator during her treatment in the hospital's
intensive care unit.
Schott kept a low profile after she ended years of turmoil by selling her controlling interest in the club in October 1999. She appeared at news
conferences when she made donations to the zoo and other local organizations.
Schott's outspokenness as owner became her legacy and her downfall.
Schott had inherited and expanded her husband's business empire after he died in 1968. Until she took over the Reds in the mid-1980s, she was known as
a car dealer who made campy television commercials featuring her beloved St. Bernards.
Once she got control of the front office, she became one of the most prominent figures in the history of baseball's first professional team.
The Reds won the 1990 World Series, sweeping the Oakland A's while Schott rubbed dog hair on manager Lou Piniella and his players.
Two years later, her use of racial slurs created a national controversy that overshadowed the club for nearly a decade. Baseball officials ordered her
to watch her comments, but she continued to publicly praise Hitler -- saying he was "good at the beginning'' but then "went too far" -- and make
disparaging remarks about ethnic groups.
She was ALWAYS with her dog "Schottzie"