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Gretchen Rossi Upset Over Reports Of Phony Charity Fund For Ex-Fiance

Apr. 2 2010, Published 12:00 p.m. ET

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The Real Housewives of Orange County's Gretchen Rossi is upset over allegations that she falsely promised to donate proceeds of a song she released on iTunes to charity, and has all the details.

Rossi said in a Bravo TV blog that she performed a song called Nothing Without You to honor the memory of her late fiancée, Jeff Beitzel, who died of Leukemia on September 13, 2008. She said she was hoping it "would resonate with the people so much more due to the tragic loss I had suffered.

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"I then decided to take my song and use it as way to help save someone else's life," she wrote. "I felt so hopeless when Jeff was sick and then when he passed away... Download the song on iTunes, and proceeds will go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the Jeff Beitzel Foundation I started in Jeff's honor. Thank you all for your support of this cause."

After some began questioning where the money raised from the song was going -- and if such an arrangement had been set up with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society -- Rossi defended herself on her Facebook page.

"I want to address a ridiculous rumor being posted," Rossi wrote on a Facebook blog March 26. "The Jeff Beitzel Memorial Fund is with the Leukemia Soceity in O.C.! People can make donations 2 this fund directly by writing "For the Jeff Beitzel Memorial Fund", Just as the proceeds from my song will be donated 2 this same fund! Someone stating that it doesn't exist is ignorant, direspectful, and incorrect! People should stop spreading false & malicious rummors."

Gretchen Rossi
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EXCLUSIVE: Gretchen Rossi Ordered To Pay Attorney’s Fees For Ex

A spokesperson for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society said in a statement: “Last year Gretchen Rossi was a candidate for Woman of the Year for the Orange County Inland Empire Chapter of  The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) and raised money in honor of Jeff Beitzel. LLS received approximately $15,000 from that campaign. It appears there was a misunderstanding about the establishment of a “Jeff Beitzel Memorial Fund” or a “Jeff Beitzel Foundation.” LLS has not set up a fund in Jeff Beitzel’s name. Any donations made to LLS in honor of Jeff Beitzel will be used to support LLS’s mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma and improve the quality of life for patients and their families. To date, LLS has not received proceeds from the sale of Gretchen Rossi’s song, Nothing Without You on iTunes, but any proceeds received by LLS will also go to support blood cancer research and patient services.”



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