Former aerospace executive James S. McDonnell III, his wife, Elizabeth Hall McDonnell, and their charitable trust donated $20 million Friday to nonprofit St. Louis conservancy Forest Park Forever, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The organization partners with St. Louis to care for the 1,300-plus-acre Forest Park, which houses the city's zoo and its major museums.
The money will bolster the conservancy's endowment and help it execute a master plan for the city-owned park that includes road and bridge upgrades. The McDonnell family founded the namesake aircraft company, later McDonnell-Douglas and now part of Boeing, and are longtime donors to St. Louis cultural, educational, and medical institutions. Forest Park Forever received $30 million in June from another mogul with local roots, Enterprise Rent-a-Car founder Jack Taylor.