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Jack Wishna Found Dead: Suicide at 54

Responsible for bringing big names to Las Vegas

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By Sami K. Martin , Christian Post Reporter
November 29, 2012|7:29 am
  • Jack Wishna
    (Photo: Twitter/JackWishna)
    Jack Wishna

Jack Wishna has been found dead in Las Vegas after he reportedly committed suicide on Tuesday. The man was known as the "Dealmaker" for helping bring some of the biggest names, including Donald Trump, to Las Vegas.

According to Coroner Mike Murphy, Wishna died of carbon monoxide poisoning in a vehicle in the garage of his home. No one suspected that anything was wrong before he took his own life, adding to the shock and grief of those who worked with the "Dealmaker" and those who simply knew him best.

Wishna was perhaps best known for his work in getting Donald Trump to set up shop on the Las Vegas Strip. Norm Clarke of the ReviewJournal.com, met Wishna back in the 1990s and got to see his talent at the "art of the deal" firsthand.

"To get Donald Trump's attention, he hired a helicopter and a photographer to capture a panoramic view of the Strip from the site where Wishna thought Trump should build his first tower in Las Vegas. It worked, and soon Wishna brought billionaires Trump and Phil Ruffin together for the deal," Clarke wrote.

Wishna also worked along Las Vegas legend Wayne Newton and helped him set up his empire at the Stardust casino. Newton told the Associated Press Wishna was "a longtime friend" and said his death came as a "tremendous surprise."

Wishna never stopped wheeling and dealing. One of his final projects was to bring Michael Jackson to Vegas in a themed casino filled with the flashing lights typical of the Strip, but with a unique, Jackson theme.

At the time, Jackson was abroad in Dublin, Ireland but made a special trip home just to meet with Wishna. "Michael arrived in a private jet and Wishna and his wife were there to meet him," author Randall Sullivan said. "So that tells you that Wishna was the guy in Michael's life at the time."

Unfortunately the project never came to light, as Jackson died before anything further could happen.

Robin Leach tweeted, "He was behind so many Vegas showbiz deals. Spoke with him just a few weeks ago. RIP good guy."

 

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