Actor Dennis Farina
, known for his roles as cops, crooks, and crooked cops, has died
. [more inside]
, the war correspondent who took one of the most iconic and disturbing photographs
of the Vietnam conflict, has died
. He was 81. [more inside]
Special effects legend Carlo Rambaldi
, most famous as the creator of E.T.
and the titular creature in Alien
, has died at the age of 86
. Here is a montage of his work.
Wesley Brown, the first black man to graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy
, has died
. He was 85 years old. [more inside]
Growing up, she was a beloved celebrity in her home country. Thousands of girls were named after her. So was a bestselling perfume
. But Josef Stalin's "Little Sparrow," his only daughter, (born Svetlana Stalina) defected to the United States in 1967. Upon arriving in New York, she promptly held a press conference
that surprised the world, denouncing her father's regime. Svetlana
became a naturalized US citizen, moved to Taliesin West, married an American, changed her name to Lana Peters, then returned to the Soviet Union in 1984, declaring
that she had not been free "for one single day" in the U.S., only to once again
return to America in 1986. She lived out her remaining days in a small town in Wisconsin
. Mrs. Peters passed away
from colon cancer on November 22nd, at the age of 85. [more inside]
"For the progress of humanity, work alone is not adequate, but the work should be associated with love, compassion, right conduct, truthfulness and sympathy. Without the above qualities, selfless service cannot be performed."
On Sunday morning
, Indian guru Sri Sathya Sai Baba passed away.
He leaves behind a massive empire
, several million mourning devotees worldwide,
an extensive religious philosophy
, a great deal of controversy
and a legacy of large-scale philanthropic projects in India, including free hospitals and mobile medical facilities
, a free university and schools,
and other efforts which included supplying clean water
to hundreds of rural villages. [more inside]
British photojournalist and filmmaker Tim Hetherington
by artillery fire in Libya today. He was 41 years old. [more inside]
, who charmed visitors
to the Berlin Zoo as an orphaned cub in 2007, died in his enclosure today in front of a crowd of 600-700 people
. Knut was only four years old, as opposed to the typical polar bear lifespan of 15-18 years
. Tragedy seems to have followed Knut for his entire brief life: his twin died at only four days old, and the zookeeper who hand-raised him died in 2008
. As Knut grew, he stopped being the cute cuddly cub everybody loved; like many zoo animals, his behavior became problematic
, and people avoided visiting him. A post-mortem is scheduled for Monday.
"Feel better, look better and live longer"
(video) was the credo of "Nutritionist, Author, Lecturer and Physical Culture Expert on Your Figure and Beauty", Jack LaLanne, who despite everything, passed away today of pneumonia at the age of 96
, less than a week after the Slate "Fitness Issue" compared him to other "fitness gurus". [more inside]
"Marion and I have not climbed Mount Everest, or written the great American novel. But we've had the joy of raising two wonderful kids, and watching them and their friends grow up into loving adults... and I guess no man or woman could ask for anything more. To happy days.
" Tom Bosley, TV's Howard Cunningham, has died at 83 [more inside]
A last sheet
flutters onto the pile: Stephen J. Cannell
, the mystery novelist and television deity responsible for 21 Jump Street
, The A-Team
, Baa Baa Black Sheep
(or Black Sheep Squadron
, Broken Badges
, The Commish
, The D.A.
, The Duke
, The Greatest American Hero
, Hardcastle and McCormick
, The Hat Squad
, J.J. Starbuck
, The Last Precinct
, The 100 Lives of Black Jack Savage
, Palace Guard
, The Quest
, Richie Brockelman: Private Eye
, The Rockford Files
, The Rousters
, Silk Stalkings
, Sonny Spoon
, Street Justice
, Tenspeed and Brown Shoe
, Top of the Hill
, and Wiseguy
, has passed away
. He was 69. [more inside]
Aaron-Carl Ragland, known simply as "Aaron-Carl" to most, was a songwriter, remixer, producer, radio show host, record label founder and all-around character.
The news of Ragland's death was first posted on his friend and fellow Detroit musician Piranha Head's Facebook page
in a status update, saying simply:
Just lost one of his best friends, Aaron-Carl, and my arms are far too short to box with GOD. One of the best Human beings in the WORLD is gone. I have no words. Music is Silence.
Aaron-Carl himself posted this video
just five days ago on his blog discussing his diagnosis and upcoming surgery after canceling his upcoming European tour
reports that Aaron-Carl is believed to have died shortly after or during essential lymph node surgery; it appears that he died overnight after beginning his first chemotherapy session. [more inside]
Gloria Stuart, actress in 'Titanic,' dies at 100.
Veteran of Hollywood's golden era, Gloria Stuart
experienced a revival in her career when she was cast in James Cameron's Titanic as the older version of Kate Winslet's character Rose. [more inside]
Mitch Miller has died at the age of 99
. In the years before rock'n' roll took over, Miller, as an A&R man first at Mercury, and then at Columbia Records, signed and produced hits for a large stable of stars, including Patti Page, Frankie Laine, Johnny Mathis, and Tony Bennett. While he did have a disdain for rock music later, he did offer Elvis Presley a contract and brought Bob Dylan and Aretha Franklin into the fold. Artists like Frank Sinatra would later criticize Miller for forcing novelty tunes like Mama Will Bark
In 1955 he had a number one hit with the old Civil War-era standard, The Yellow Rose of Texas.
Beginning in 1961 he turned a series of records into a hit NBC series, Sing Along with Mitch
and his goateed face became a television staple as he encouraged viewers at home to follow the bouncing ball and join in. The show helped launch the career of future Sesame Street star Bob McGrath
and inspired the Flintstones parody Hum Along with Herman
Gravelly-voiced character actor
James Gammon has passed away
of cancer at the age of 70.
spanned more than 50 years in television, (with roles from "Gunsmoke" to "Grays Anatomy",) film and theater, but most will probably remember him as either the cantankerous manager of the Cleveland Indians
in the 1989 comedy "Major League" or as Don Johnson's crotchety, retired longshoreman father on the television show Nash Bridges
. [more inside]
When "Proto-Pop" artist Larry Rivers
' died in 2002
, he left behind extensive archives of his letters, paperwork, photographs and film documenting the New York artistic and literary scene from the 1940s through the 1980s. They chronicle his friendships and relationships with dozens of artists, musicians and writers, from Willem de Kooning and Andy Warhol to Frank O’Hara. Also included: films and videos of his two adolescent daughters, naked or topless, being interviewed by their father about their developing breasts. Now, one daughter, who says she was pressured to participate beginning when she was 11, is demanding that material be removed from the archive and returned to her and her sister. [more inside]
She's been called "the greatest posthumous success story in music history." But when she died of melanoma at age 33, few people outside of the Washington DC-area had heard of Eva Marie Cassidy
. [more inside]
You may not know who Israel "Brudda Iz" Kamakawiwoʻole was, but you're probably familiar with his medley of "Over the Rainbow / What a Wonderful World,"
which has been included on several movie soundtracks and used on television shows & commercials throughout the world.... [more inside]
has died of a stroke at age 76
. She was known and loved as Blanche Deveraux
on the Golden Girls. She has joined costars Bea Arthur
and Estelle Getty
in the great beyond, where presumably, they serve cheesecake
, probably best known for her role as the fearlessly opinionated Southern belle Julia Sugarbaker on Designing Women
, has died
. She was 70 years old.
Section 25 frontman Larry Cassidy, 56, has died.
The news was first reported by journalist and punk musician John Robb
on his blog; at this time, no cause of death has been released. [more inside]
God has called Oral Roberts
Edward M. Kennedy, Senator from Massachusetts
, has died at age 77
. After a rocky youth (including scandals of cheating
and reckless driving
), Kennedy followed his brothers into politics, making health care
his cause, and eventually went on to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Anticipating his own death, he had been trying to create a quick transition for his replacement
as a vote on health care reform rapidly approached.
Memphis music legend Jim Dickinson has died.
Dickinson's full credits
are as impressive a resume as you'll find over the past 40 years: session player for many, including the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Aretha Franklin. Producer for albums by Jason and the Scorchers, Big Star, the Replacements, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, and Mudhoney. Among his survivors are sons Cody and Luther of the North Mississippi All-Stars
. His death comes one week after a benefit show
in his honor headlined by John Hiatt. R.I.P., Jim.
Patrick McGoohan has died.
The BBC and other news agencies are reporting the death of actor Patrick McGoohan, following a brief illness. He was 80 years old.
McGoohan is best known as the star and co-producer of the 1960s cult classic TV series "The Prisoner"
, which we have discussed here many times, most recently last week
when AMC announced that it would stream all of the original episodes on its website.
AMC has also been producing a remake of the series starring Jim Caviezel (as Number 6) and Ian McKellen (as Number 2) for broadcast this fall
. [more inside]
Eight years nearly to the day after I read about Adrian Henri's
death on the Formica table of a service-station cafeteria, another of my favourite poets has left us
. Adrian Mitchell
, left-wing poet
, 1932 - 2008. [more inside]
Said to be the busiest actor in Hollywood -- ever, Don LaFontaine
was this generation's most prolific announcer, in the traditional sense of the word, lending his voice to all the major American television networks, and redefining the movie trailer. LaFontaine has died of complications from a collapsed lung at 68. [more inside]
, the only American ever to be winner of the Formula One Championship
, a mulitple time winner
of the 24 Hours of LeMans races in 1958, 1961 and 1962, and automotive journalist, has died at age 81.
Dr. Michael E. DeBakey
died last night
a few months shy of 100 years old. The father of modern cardiovascular surgery
, he extended the lives of thousands through multiple surgical innovations. [more inside]
Sydney Pollack has died of cancer, at age 73
. While best known
as the director
of Out of Africa
, he also made documentaries (Sketches of Frank Gehry
) and was an actor with notable roles in Eyes Wide Shut
, Michael Clayton
, and even an appearance in The Sopranos
Albert Hofmann, the inventor/discoverer of LSD, has died
at the age of 102. Wiki. The Albert Hofmann Foundation. Erowid
entry on LSD
. Hofmann's often-cited essay, "LSD, My Problem Child
." Late in his life, he questioned
his own invention. A conversation
with Dr. Hoffman. [more inside]
Former Beatles roadie Neil Aspinall has died of lung cancer.
He was the head of the Beatles’ Apple Corporation until about a year ago, when he resigned
after the settlement of a long running dispute with Apple Computer. [more inside]
Arthur C. Clarke
, author of 2001, inventor of the telecommunications satellite
and the only reason most geeks can find Sri Lanka
on a map, has died
shortly after celebrating his 90th birthday
But if I'd ever leave you,
It couldn't be in autumn.
How I'd leave in autumn I never will know....
, who shot to fame playing Lancelot in Camelot
, not the model
) passed away
today. He had been waiting for a lung transplant.
Obitfilter: Anita Roddick (1942-2007). Anita Roddick
, who founded the Body Shop
in Brighton's North Laine
in 1976, has died of a stroke at St. Richard's hospital in Chichester. The shop, in Kensington Gardens
, has long since closed - it's now an optician - but stories about it are still recounted
. Although Body Shop is still based in nearby Littlehampton, the controlling interest was sold
last year to L'Oreal for the tidy sum of $1.3bn, allowing Ms Roddick to concentrate on her campaigning work.
Alex, the African Gray parrot who "spoke" over 100 words, has passed away. y2karl introduced MetaFilter to Alex a few years ago.
Alex had been the subject of Dr. Irene Pepperberg's research
for nearly 20 years. His ability to communicate with people using an extensive English vocabulary demonstrated a level of intelligence previously unthought of in birds, but critics include no less than Noam Chomsky himself. Here's a 1999 NYT article about Alex
if you have never heard of this incredible bird, and a video of another gray parrot demonstrating its own talents
I don't know what other people’s first thoughts may be on Monday mornings; but mine, as the jabber of my husband’s radio crawls into my dreams, is “Has anyone died today?”
a week-long diary
by The Economist's obituaries
editor, Ann Wroe, which she completed today.