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Chicago Billionaire Dies in Race Car Crash On His Birthday

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Prominent Chicago businessman James “Jim” Crown died on Sunday in a crash while driving on a racetrack near Aspen, Colorado.

Crown was the CEO of the investment firm Henry Crown and Company and managing partner of Aspen Skiing Co. He was a scion of one of Chicago’s wealthiest families.

The accident happened at the Aspen Motorsports Park in Woody Creek, Colorado, where Crown was celebrating his 70th birthday.

“He was driving a race car, and it hit a wall going around a curve,” his father, fellow billionaire financier Lester Crown, told the Chicago Sun-Times.

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Well-respected in the community

According to the Sun-Times, Crown was enlisting the help of fellow CEOs to create a massive jobs program for 10,000 young men from high-crime areas.

“Basically, he loved to take care and do things for people,” his father said. “He had no bias and very little ego. Just a remarkable, remarkable human.”

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson told CBS Chicago that he was “devastated” by the news of Crown’s death.

“Jim gave back to the city through philanthropy and leadership on a number of civic and academic boards as he was deeply committed to investing in Chicago and its people.”

Crown is survived by his wife, four children, and two grandchildren.

His family was ranked 34th-richest in America by Forbes in 2020.

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