With contributions of nearly $40 million over the years, philanthropist Joan Kroc literally helped build San Diego Hospice from the ground up. But her name was nearly removed from the roster of hospice philanthropists earlier this month when attorneys attempted to dismantle the Kroc endowment to pay creditors in the hospice’s bankruptcy case.

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Attorneys withdrew a petition to pay a $4.3 million bank loan, among other debts, using the Kroc endowment after they got pushback from the Attorney General’s Office, according to Sam Maisel, the lawyer representing creditors in the case.

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Lorie Hearn is the chief executive officer and editor of inewsource. She is a lifelong news-aholic who started her reporting career writing her Girl Scout newsletter at age 12. High school and college were filled with school newspaper work, and after graduation, she worked as a reporter for newspapers...