The daughter of a millionaire Manhattan landlord claims she was cut out of his will after she caught him in a secret gay tryst.
Diana Downing, 54, said her relationship with her ‘closeted homosexual’ father, Vincent Downing, crumbled after she walked in on him with his ‘male lover’, wrote in an affidavit filed to get her hands of part of her father’s $80 million inheritance.
‘I believe that my father was so embarrassed that he shunned me,’ she wrote, adding that he skipped her high school graduation and her Yale University commencement, the New York Daily News reports.
The father and daughter were never able to reconcile their differences before Vincent was killed, aged 86, on May 10, 2016, when an elderly driver crushed him while he was walking across a pedestrian crosswalk on the Upper East Side.
Diana Downing, 54, (pictured) claims she was cut out of her father’s will after she caught him in a secret gay tryst
Diana is now fighting her two siblings for a slice of her father’s estate. His collection of Manhattan apartment buildings bring in a combine $3 million in rent every 18 months.
She believes that if he hadn’t died expectantly, they would have reconciled.
‘I was cautiously hopeful that my father would overcome the embarrassment that I believe prompted him to shun me in my teen years, and which I suspect haunted him,’ she wrote.
‘I believe that, shortly before he died, my father was preparing to reconnect with me.’
Vincent was killed, aged 86, on May 10, 2016, when an elderly driver crushed him while he was walking across a pedestrian crosswalk on the Upper East Side (pictured)
In her petition to Manhattan Surrogate’s Court to halt the distribution of the assets in his will, Diana argued that her father, who had a townhouse on the Upper East Side, had spent to past 20 years living in Paris. She claims to have evidence showing he had most of his medical procedures in France and family had visited him there.
Under French law, all children, even if cut out of the will, are entitled to a share of their parents’ assets.
Diana is also fighting the same battle across the pond, in France, to demand her share of the inheritance.
However, a lawyer for Diana’s brother, David Downing, claims Diana is lying about walking in on their father in an attempt to get a share of his money.
Diana (pictured left and right) is now fighting her two siblings for a slice of her father’s estate. His collection of Manhattan apartment buildings bring in a combine $3 million in rent every 18 months
The attorney called her claims ‘totally fabricated’ with ‘no basis in fact’ and said that Vincent had actually disinherited her because he was disappointed in how her life had turned out.
They highlighted a 2010 felony charge which saw Diana disbarred as an attorney after pleading guilty to a Medicaid fraud scheme.
They say she also turned down his attempts at reconciliation.
Diana’s siblings also point out that their father had filed taxes in the US, mostly living in Manhattan, so couldn’t be a resident of France.