CHICAGO — Martyl Reinsdorf, the wife of Chicago Bulls and White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, died Monday following a lengthy illness, the teams announced. She was 85.
The teams said she died at her home in Paradise Valley, Arizona.
A creator of Cloisonné jewelry, Martyl Reinsdorf designed five of the Bulls’ six NBA championship rings as well as the White Sox’s 2005 World Series ring. Known as “Grandma Martyl,” she also created and distributed more than 1 million coloring books, crayons, markers and toys to hospitals, orphanages and shelters around the world.
“My mother had such a heart for children,” son Michael Reinsdorf, the Bulls’ president, said in a statement. “The joy she brought through her coloring books made me so proud to be her son. As a father, I loved seeing her being such an involved grandmother with my children. They had so many shared interests and spent time together developing computer programs, creating costumes and starting her coloring book program. These are memories that we all treasure as a family.”
Born in Denver in 1936, Martyl Reinsdorf moved to Chicago with her family in 1944. She majored in Japanese and Chinese history at George Washington University in the nation’s capital, where she met and married Jerry Reinsdorf in 1956.
She went on to work at the Pentagon and, after the couple moved to Chicago, for the Department of Agriculture.
Besides Jerry and Michael, Martyl Reinsdorf is survived by son Jonathan and daughter Susan Reinsdorf as well as nine grandchildren. Son David Reinsdorf died at age 51 in 2014.