Elizabeth Taylor’s close friend and protege, model and actress Kathy Ireland, claims that the late icon and AIDS activist ran an AIDS pharmaceuticals ring out of her Bel-Air mansion during the ‘80s.
"Talk about fearless in her home in Bel-Air," Ireland told Entertainment Tonight during an interview in honor of World AIDS day on Tuesday, Dec. 1. "It was a safe house. A lot of the work that she did, it was illegal, but she was saving lives. It was in a time when it was not something to do. Business associates pleaded with her, 'Leave this thing alone.' She received death threats. Friends hung up on her when she asked for help, but something that I love about Elizabeth is her courage."
Taylor, who founded the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in 1991, got involved with the cause after her dear friend Rock Hudson died from the disease in 1985. During an interview with Vanity Fair in 1992, Taylor recalled that, at the time, nobody wanted to help.
“I have never had so many ‘no’s said to me. They didn’t want to come to the evening, didn’t want to be associated. Some very big names [said no],” Taylor said at the time, adding that some of her friends told her: “‘Oh, Elizabeth, this is one of your lame-duck causes. Back away from it. It’s going to hurt you.’"
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