Wendy Reves's Son and the Fine Art of Trying to Keep the Court From Tossing His DMA Suit

Dallas Museum of Art
Portrait of Mrs. Emery Reves by Graham Sutherland, 1978
When first we noted in March that Wendy Russell Reves's only child, Arnold Leon Schroeder Jr., was suing the Dallas Museum of Art and former UT Southwestern president Kern Wildenthal, it was, for a moment, Big News -- big enough, even, for The New York Times. Schroeder, of course, is claiming he and not the museum should have ownership of the masterpieces that make up the Wendy and Emery Reves Collection. And, of course, he is claiming Wildenthal and others plied Wendy, "a chronic alcoholic," with enough drink to convince her to part with several million donated to the hospital. The DMA and UT Southwestern issued their indignant denials -- first in press release form; then, three months later, in motions to dismiss that dismiss Schroeder as an unsympathetic footnote trying to "bootstrap a conspiracy theory" where there is none.

That was more than two months ago; since then the case has puttered along out of sight, settling into the dull rhythm of legal-filing call-and-response. I'd forgotten all about it. But, yesterday, a Friend of Unfair Park asked via email: "What is the latest with the DMA/Reves/Schroeder lawsuit? For some reason I am obsessed with the Reves collection and the case." And so I lifted the case jacket for the docs that follow -- one filed two weeks ago, another only yesterday.

In the first, Schroeder, through his attorneys (including a certain former WFAA reporter), asks the court to knock down the motion to to dismiss, insisting the DMA and UT Southwestern are attempting to "divert the Court's attention from the substantive issues and law that govern this stage of the proceedings by throwing stones at Schroeder." He then turns to French law, insisting that upon Wendy's death in '07, he automatically became the "forced heir" entitled to 30 years' worth of restitution. "Before Schroeder became Wendy's forced heir," says the filing, "the DMA, through the individual Defendants, took property and millions of dollars, doing all they could along the way to avoid the anticipated impact of French law."

Yesterday, the Dallas Museum of Art responded by dismissing Schroeder's claims as "strained," "laboring," "a red herring" based on "pre-Civil War case law." As far as the DMA's concerned, he simply has no standing to even bring such a case in the first place -- and even if he did, well, the statute of limitations expired long ago. "Evidently," says the filing, "he is trying to fit a square peg (tortious interference with inheritance rights allegations) into a round hole (constructive fraud claim), because he does not have a square hole (tortious interference with inheritance rights claim)." The filings follow, by request.

Update at 4:59 p.m.: About two hours ago, attorneys representing Kern Wildenthal filed their response to Schroeder's claims. Long story short: His are "outrageous claims" demanding "dismissal with prejudice." That doc now follows, along with the others. Arnold Leon Schroeder Jr. ResponseDMA Response to Schroeder August 18Dkt. 34_Reply to Plaintiff's Response to Defendants' Motions to Dismiss

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Oak Cliff Townie
Oak Cliff Townie

I don't know what the falling was out between The woman and he son was but it seems like the Sweet talking guy took advantage of the rift. And for his work he  was allowed a just taste of the millions he managed to funnel into the accounts of those who's  bidding he did.

The same kind of shenanigans happen a the local Less than wealthy  level . Church staff befriending those really up in years and the next thing the kids know is Mom & Dads Golden years have no gold and just the years.Having dealt with it The folks who have detoured a parents life savings involving a church are the most vile creatures know to anyone.Their smugness and wrapping them selves up Christian Sayings and how the Church was blessed .And how greedy the kids are .

Still Pi$$ED about that sorry.


Kern Wildenthal DID without a doubt engage in a conspiracy to become the controlling authority of the Reves' Estate.Why would Wildenthal fly over to Reves' villa with an attorney and a new will naming Wildenthal sole beneficary of Reves' estate 6 months before she passed away and more than 2 years after her French physicians pronounced her mentally incapable of making decisions? Wildenthal used UT Southwestern funds to make all of his trips, including this one,which he never repaid.One but has to review Wildenthal's expenses at the university to conclude he was living large at donor expense. Wildenthal is quoted as saying, "Wendy,I'd marry you if I wasn't already married.". He only wanted her money.French law requires the children receive 50% of the estate.Wildenthal wants it all. Wildenthal liked Pauline Weinberger as well, but once she died, he was in her home going through her things while she lie dead in her bed.Wildenthal never even called the police or the medical examiner.Getting her "stuff" was his goal and he achieved it.Wildenthal used donor funds to pay his dues and other costs in a fancy wine club,the Opea Guild,and any other weathy patrons society where he could feel as exclusive as the wealthy donors he solicited. Wildenthal was nothing more than a beggar of the wealthy so he could feel rich and iimportant living off of the crumbs of wealth.When he had an opportunity to become wealthy,no matter the methodology, he went after Wendy Reves and her estate.Wildenthal hired people at the university to "plug in" and use their connections to his sole benefit.This is one evil, greedy and heartless man.


Have nothing intelligent to say.  I just love that portrait.


Loving the square peg/round hole analogy, and reference to "dusty authority." 

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