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Settlement reached over Mickey Rooney burial

Actor Mickey Rooney (L) and his wife Janice arrive at the American Museum of Natural History for the premiere of the movie "Night at the Mus
Actor Mickey Rooney (L) and his wife Janice arrive at the American Museum of Natural History for the premiere of the movie "Night at the Mus

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A Los Angeles judge on Friday approved a settlement between the estranged wife of late golden era Hollywood star Mickey Rooney and the conservator of his estate, ending a legal tussle over where the actor will be buried, the conservator's attorney said.

Rooney, who died on Sunday at age 93, will be buried at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles, the same resting place of silent film stars Rudolph Valentino and Douglas Fairbanks, according to the settlement approved by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Lesley Green, attorney Vivian Thoreen said.

Rooney wanted to be buried either alongside his Hollywood peers or in a veterans' cemetery and not at a family plot, Michael Augustine, the conservator of Rooney's estate, told the court. Rooney served as an entertainer in World War Two.

A judge on Tuesday ordered Rooney's remains to be held at a mortuary after Augustine alleged that Rooney's wife, Janice, had attempted to have them removed.

Attorneys for Janice Rooney said she believed Rooney wanted to be buried in a plot he owned in Westlake Village, California, next to his mother.

Rooney, who had not lived with his wife since 2012, disinherited his wife and eight children in his will. He left behind an estate of only $18,000 to a stepson who had been his primary caregiver.

The star of the "Andy Hardy" movies as a teen during the Great Depression will be buried in a private funeral, but Rooney's stepson Christopher Aber and Aber's wife will not be able to attend the ceremony, according to the agreement.

Rooney sued Aber in 2011, alleging elder abuse and mismanagement of his finances.

The diminutive actor known for his wise-cracking style wed eight times, including to actress Ava Gardner.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Ken Wills)

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