Christopher Stokowski hails from one of the most famous family lines in the world, so it is only natural that his name is well-known to the public. Christopher is a music composer who is best known for being the step-brother of the accomplished journalist Anderson Cooper who works for CNN, as well as one of the sons of the late socialite and heiress Gloria Vanderbilt. For a long time, Christopher lived under the radar and dissociated himself from his celebrity relatives in order to forge a path of his own away from the pressures of the spotlight.
Christopher Stokowski’s Biography
The runaway brother of Anderson was born on the 31st of January in 1952 to the legendary Leopold Stokowski and his then-wife, Gloria Vanderbilt. His father is regarded as one of the finest orchestra conductors to come out of the 20th century. Gloria, his mother, was an heiress to the vast Vanderbilt fortune. Fortunately for her, she was born to Reginald and Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt. Her exceptional lineage adorned her with fame from the moment she was born. She was thrust into the spotlight long before she even learned how to walk. She went on to become a renowned socialite, painter, businesswoman, designer, and writer.
Christopher Stokowski’s mother tied the knot with his father just a few weeks after she divorced her first husband, Hollywood agent Pasquale Di Cicco. At 20, she was 43 years younger than Christopher’s father. He has an older brother named Leopold Stanislaus Stokowski, born two years before him. Christopher’s parents ended their conjugal union after 12 years of being married. His mother was granted custody of him and his brother.
Very little is known about Christopher’s early life other than the fact that he was a shy child who had a hard time dealing with his mother’s fame. Even after he went off to Bard College, he remained reclusive and tried very much to stay away from the Stokowski-Vanderbilt fame. He followed his father’s footsteps by taking an interest in music and soon became determined to establish a career as a musician.
6 Things to Know About Christopher Stokowski
1. He disappeared for 38 years
In 1974, Christopher fell in love with a young woman called April Sandmeyer and began dating her. He became engaged to her in 1977, shortly after his father Leopold, and stepfather Wyatt Cooper passed away. Around this time he began seeing his mother’s therapist, whom he later discovered was colluding with his mother to try to bring an end to his relationship with Sandmeyer. This led to his fiancée calling off the engagement. In anger, Christopher moved out of his mother’s house and stopped speaking to her thinking it’d help him win April back. When his efforts proved abortive, he moved away from New York and told his family he was never returning. No one heard from him again for the next 38 years.
2. Christopher Stokowski has more than a handful of siblings
The Stokowski-Vanderbilt family tree is a very large and blended one. On his father’s side, Christopher has one sibling named Leopold, and three step-sisters named Sonia Maria Noel, Gloria Luba Stokowski, and Andrea Sadja Stokowski. His mother’s marriage to the editor and writer Wyatt Cooper produced two more step-siblings: Carter Vanderbilt Cooper and Anderson Hays Cooper.
3. His half-sibling Carter committed suicide
While Christopher was away from his family, his half-brother Carter killed himself by jumping off the 14th-floor terrace of his mother’s penthouse in Manhattan. He was only 23 at the time. No one understands why he chose to end his life because as far as everyone could tell, he was doing fine. He was a smart chap who had attended Princeton and had a lucrative job as a book editor at American Heritage.
4. Christopher Stokowski reunited with his family in 2016
After being estranged from his family for several decades, Christopher got in touch with them again in 2016 after he watched the HBO documentary featuring his mother and brother titled Nothing Left Unsaid: Gloria Vanderbilt and Anderson Cooper. He continues to maintain contact with them till date.
5. His mother had widely publicized relationships with several famous personalities
Gloria Vanderbilt was renowned for many things including her romantic and sexual affairs with a number of celebrities including Marlon Brando, Frank Sinatra, Clark Gable, Howard Hughes, and Errol Flynn.
6. He has a massive net worth
Coming from a wealthy family sure has its perks, one of which is multi-million dollar inheritances. Christopher Stokowski inherited a huge chunk of his father’s fortune. Following the passing of his mother, it circulated that he is entitled to more than his share of her $200 million fortune as Anderson Cooper had stated that he will not be accepting his share of the wealth. Nonetheless, there are also reports that the woman didn’t leave him anything.