We’re Feeling Blue: Anne Slater, R.I.P.

by Ben Diamond Photographed by
Wednesday, December 27, 2017

One of AVENUE’s favorite characters, socialite Anne Slater, passed away on Sunday at her home in Wellington, Florida, her husband John Cahill confirmed. She was 93 years old. Slater was a society fixture, well-known for sharp-witted pronouncements like “A woman needs four animals in her life: A mink in the closet. A jaguar in the garage. A tiger in bed. And an ass to pay for it all.”

Those who knew her remembered a charming woman comfortable in both Park Avenue living rooms and downtown nightclubs. But to those who only knew her by reputation, Slater will probably be best remembered for her trademark blue glasses. “I found them at Lugene in Philly in the 1960’s,” she told Simon Doonan in 2000. “Cobalt blue, not Yves Klein blue—very snappy, and they went perfectly with everything I was wearing at the time: Cardin, Pucci, Gernreich, Bonnie Cashin. I came back to New York and bought 36 pairs at the Lugene store on 57th Street and I’ve been working my way through my stash ever since. My prescription never changed—my reading glasses did—but I don’t read much when I’m out. Who does?”

Cahill, who married Slater in 2004, recalled a half-century of happy memories with the society queen. “In 50 years we didn’t have a single fight,” he said. “All we did was laugh.”

Slater died happily in her sleep, shortly after telling Cahill that she was ready to go. “She picked her day of death and her manner of dying,” he said. “We thought our friend Bing Crosby had the winning formula, playing golf in Spain. But she had it pretty dang good.”


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