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Death Anniversary Thread

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On this day in  2010 American singer Eddie Fisher died aged 82.

The crooner sold millions of records in the 1950s and famously left his wife  Hollywood actress and american sweetheart Debbie Reynolds to become, briefly Elizabeth Taylors 4th husband before she left him for Richard Burton. 

The two women later resumed their friendship decades later but the hostility they felt towards Eddie persisted until the end of his life. He died approximately six months before  his ex wife Elizabeth Taylor. 

 

He had good relations with his third wife actress Connie Stevens who he had two daughters with but who he also divorced but Debbie continued to make digs and drop hints about the size of his manhood in  her stage shows and tv interviews. 

Eddie was the father of the late  Carrie Fisher- his daughter with Reynolds. 

 

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Irving Berlin died on this day 33 years ago, aged 101.

Masonic Biographies| Irving Berlin

Berlin came to fame in 1911 with the song "Alexander's Ragtime Band"- this song revitalized the ragtime genre of music which peaked in the 1890s, and started a dancing craze. Berlin continued to see success throughout the 1920s, and wrote "Puttin' On the Ritz" in 1928, most famously recorded by Fred Astaire:

 

In 1938, Berlin wrote "God Bless America" to mark the twentieth anniversary of Armistice Day. This song is now considered an unofficial national anthem of the United States. Below is an 80-year old Berlin performing it on The Ed Sullivan Show:

 

Berlin's most successful song came in 1942 with "White Christmas", which he wrote for the film Holiday Inn. The version sung by Bing Crosby is the world's best-selling single of all time, with over 50 million records sold, and is among the most-played songs during the holiday season.

 

Berlin retired in 1971 and would live for another eighteen years. The man that caused the ragtime craze lived long enough to listen to "Straight Outta Compton" if he so chose.

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Its 41 years since the death of composer Harry Warren, aged 87.

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Born Salvatore Guaragna, to Italian immigrant parents in New York, he demonstrated an early aptitude for music, teaching himself the accordion, and playing drums professionally by age 14. By 18 he was working at the Vitagraph Motion Picture Studios, where he also played piano amongst his other, administrative, tasks. Self-taught, he was also playing in Silent-movie houses and cafes. 

 

During his time serving in the Navy he began writing songs.

 

He was the first major American songwriter to write primarily for film, with over 500 published songs appearing in over 300 films, including an 18-film collaboration with Busby Berkely. He was nominated for eleven Academy Awards for Best Song, winning three times ("Lullaby of Broadway" (1935) w. Al Dubin for Gold Diggers of 1935, "You'll Never Know" (1943) w. Mack Gordon for Hello, Frisco, Hello, and "On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe" (1945) w. Johnny Mercer for The Harvey Girls), and his song Chatanooga Choo-Choo (lyrics by Mack Gordon), as recorded by the Glenn Miller Orchestra, was the first certified million-seller, in 1942.

 

He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1971.

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American actor and comedian Dan Rowan died on this day 35 years ago, aged 65.

 

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American professional baseball catcher who later took on the roles of manager and coach Yogi Berra died on this day 7 years ago, aged 90.

 

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Sigmund Freud died on this day 83 years ago, aged 83.

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Freud needs no introduction- he is considered the father of psychoanalysis, came up with the model of conscious structure (id, ego, superego), and has a "slip" named after him:

Freudian slip (n.): an unintentional error regarded as revealing subconscious feelings.

 

Freud was a heavy smoker, and in 1923, found a cancerous lesion in his mouth. Freud was treated by a quack at first and nearly bled to death. He then sought the medical help of a competent doctor- the doctor was a friend of Freud's, but he did not tell him it was malignant out of fear that Freud may attempt suicide. It would later spread to his jaw, and by the time he fled Nazi Germany in 1938 (Freud was Jewish), it was considered inoperable. Freud opened up to his daughter about assisted suicide, and another doctor friend of Freud convinced her that it was his time. Freud's choice of death was a lethal dose of morphine.

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On this day in 2020  renowned French singer Juliette Greco  died aged 93.

 She was a notable  bohemian of her generation. 

 

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American actor, choreographer, dancer, and film and stage director Bob Fosse died on this day 35 years ago, aged 60.

 

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American actor, songwriter, country music vocalist and singing cowboy Jimmy Wakely died on this day 40 years ago, aged 68.

 

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Its 44 years since the death of California Angels center-fielder Lyman Bostock.

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After playing in the minor leagues for the Twins organisation, he made his major-league debut in 1975, against the Texas Rangers, scoring three runs on 1 hit and 2 walks. The following season, his first full season, he finished fourth in the American League batting with .323, and in 1977, finishing second with .336. After the '77 season ended he became an early beneficiary of free agency, signing a six-year deal with the Angels worth $2.3million (he'd received $20k for his final season at Minnesota), immediately donating $10k to his hometown church to rebuild their sunday school. After a poor first month, he attempted to return that months salary, claiming he hadn't earned it, a request that was refused. He instead donated it to charity.

 

As the season approached its end, he was leading the Angels batting, going 2 for 4 against the White Sox at Comiskey Park, to take his average to .296. 

 

Following the game, as was usual when he played in Chicago, he visited his uncle in nearby Gary, Indiana and they visited an old acquaintance, later giving her and her cousin Barbara Smith a lift. Lyman Bostock & Barbara Smith got in the back of the car; unbeknown to them, this was observed by Smith's estranged husband, Leonard, who on seeing this concluded that the two were having an affair. When the car stopped at a signal, Smith drew alongside, and fired a single shot from a .410 calibre shotgun into the back seat. Bostock, sitting between the gun and Barbara Smith, took the brunt of the blast, and two hours later in hospital. He was 27. Barbara Smith suffered only superficial injuries.

 

Leonard Smith was tried twice, pleading temporary insanity, the first trial ending in a hung jury, and in the second he was found not guilty by reason of insanity. He served seven months in a mental hospital, after which he was released. Including pre-trial time spent in custody this amounted to 21 months total for the killing. Indiana state law was changed subsequently, so that those found not guilty could still be sent to prison after spending time in psychiatric care, should they no longer be considered insane.

 

Following his release, Leonard Smith never commented on the case, lived a law-abiding life and died in 2010 of natural causes, aged 64.

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On this day 19 years ago in 2003, american character actor  Lyle  Bettger  died in California aged 88.

He played numerous roles in both Hollywood film's and television from the 1950s and beyond. 

Lyle often portrayed villains,  the most notable being as the angry vengeful and jealous  elephant handler Klaus in Oscar winning film The Greatest Show on earth (1952).

 

His first theatre role , was  in a play called Brother Rat which was made into a film in 1938   which starred Ronald Reagan,  Priscilla Lane, Eddie Albert and Jane Wyman. 

In terms of his film debut it was in 1949 in a film called  The Lie. A villainous role in  Barbara Stanwyck  film No man of her own(1950) followed. 

He seemed to fit quite well into westerns cast in ones such as Forbidden (1953) (With Tony Curtis),  The Great Sioux Uprising (1953) cast lead Jeff  Chandler, Drums across the river(1954) with Audie Murphy and Walter Brennan  and Gunfight at the O.K Corral with legendary golden era actors Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas. 

 

 A later role in 1969 saw him cast alongside  leading man Burt Reynolds in Impasse. 

By the 1960s  Lyle career moved more to become a mix of television and film roles. Basically taking roles and work wherever it was offered. 

Bonanza, Combat,  Rawhide, Gunsmoke and Hawaii Five-O  being some of the TV shows he appeared in. Numerous appearances in the latter in part explained by his moving to live in Hawaii in the late 1960s . At his acting peak he was  a blonde haired , handsome  steely eyed villian-perfect for many a role in westerns on film and TV. 

He was predeceased by his wife of 55 years in 1996 and survived by their three children.

 

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Dr. Seuss died on this day 31 years ago, aged 87.

Putting Dr. Seuss's work in historical context - The Boston Globe

 

Seuss is best known for his children's books- The Cat in the HatThe GrinchGreen Eggs and HamThe LoraxHorton Hears a Who, etc...

But Seuss also worked on some more adult stuff as well. During World War II, Dr. Seuss- then known by his birth name, Theodor Geisel- wrote several episodes of the Army-exclusive Private Snafu. His style of rhyming is especially evident in "Spies":

 

Seuss is also credited as the person who coined the term "nerd"- in this case, a "nerd" was one of the creatures shown in his book If I Ran the Zoo.

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Its 32 years since the death of Carmen Nigro, aka Ken Roady, aged 84.

 

Nigro worked as a railroad dining car chef for the Santa Fe Railway, and then a security guard. He claimed, in 1969, that he was also a Hollywood stuntman, working under the alias Ken Roady, and was the human inside the ape costume for the 1933 movie KIng Kong (starring Fay Wray & Robert Armstrong), and others, including Mighty Joe Young, and 25-30 in total.

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At the time, these claims were largely taken at face value and he gave talks at schools and youth groups on his time playing the role.

 

Film historians have dismissed his claims - Kong was an animated model, and other great apes have verified performers credited.

 

Early reports of Nigro's claims came from Bob Greene, of the Chicago Sun-Times, who wrote this on his death. 

 

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American singer and songwriter Tim Rose died on this day 20 years ago, aged 62.

 

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53 minutes ago, The Ashes Urn said:

American singer and songwriter Tim Rose died on this day 20 years ago, aged 62.

 

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This is the arsehole who stole the credit for the song "Morning Dew" from Bonnie Dobson who wrote it.

http://www.taco.com/roots/dobsoninterview.html

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Alcohol enthusiast Billy Carter died on this day 34 years ago, aged 51.

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The media first picked Billy up when his older brother Jimmy was running for president in 1976. That year, he was running to become the mayor of his small hometown of Plains- he lost the vote 97-71.

 

During Jimmy's presidency, Billy became a spokesperson for the Peanut Lolita liqueur brand, and would later sponsor Billy Beer. The latter was sold for only one year- between 1977 and 1978. Eventually, Billy's drinking would spiral out of control, and it culminated in the time when he pissed in public on an airport runway.

 

Between 1978 and 1979, Billy made three trips to Libya, and registered as a foreign agent of the Libyan government, receiving $220,000 from the Gaddafi regime. This led to a Senate investigation later called "Billygate", and is one of the factors that led to Jimmy losing the 1980 election to Ronald Reagan.

 

Billy was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 1987, and died the following year. His family also had a history of the disease- it killed his father James in 1953, his sister Ruth in 1983, and later, his sister Gloria in 1990.

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On this day 35 years ago in 1987  American actress  Mary Astor died aged 81.

 Her career began in the silent movie era and she is probably best known for starring in  legendary  film The Maltese Falcon  in 1941.

She played femme fatale  Ruth Wonderly in this film noir  opposite Humphrey Bogart that was also  the directorial debut of John Huston.

 

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American professional golfer who is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most charismatic players in the sport’s history Arnold Palmer died on this day 6 years ago, aged 87.

 

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English musician, best known as the drummer for the rock band Led Zeppelin John Bonham died on this day 42 years ago, aged 32.

 

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American singer Andy Williams died on this day 10 years ago, aged 84.

 

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Its 35 years since the death of writer, actor & director Emlyn Williams.

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Born in Flintshire, Wales, Williams stated that he'd probably have ended up down the mines had he not come to the attention of a teacher, Sarah Grace Cooke, who encouraged him in his academic studies (even as far as helping financially, to enable him stay in France to perfect his French). He won a scholarship to Christ Church College, Oxford, studying French & Italian and while there he enrolled in the Oxford University Drama Society, and later, a London-based repertory company.

 

He became an overnight star with his play Night Must Fall, which wrote and also played the lead. His most famous work is The Corn is Green, based on his childhood - the character Miss Moffatt is based on his teacher Sarah Grace Cooke. This was made into a film starring Bette Davis, and also a TV production starring Katherine Hepburn.

 

he also wrote an autobiographical light comedy The Druid's Rest, which played at London's St. Martin's Theatre in 1944 and gave Richard Burton his stage debut. The only film he directed (as well as writing and starring in), The Last Days of Dolwyn, was Burton's screen debut (1949). 

 

Williams became friends with Burton & his first wife, Sybil, and was godfather to their daughter, actress Kate Burton.

 

He died aged 81, from complications of Bowel cancer.

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Canadian singer, actress and folklorist Hélène Baillargeon died on this day 25 years ago, aged 81.

 

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Gloria Stuart died on this day 12 years ago, aged 100.

Gloria Stuart (Actress) - On This Day

Stuart's breakout role was as Flora Cranley in the 1933 version of The Invisible Man. Stuart would also star in several Shirley Temple films. Stuart would leave Hollywood in 1946 to pursue creating art. Below is one of her paintings:

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By 1975, Stuart felt like acting again, and was cast in TV roles, with guest appearances in shows such as Murder, She Wrote and The Waltons. It wasn't until 1996 that she would return to the spotlight- James Cameron was looking for Golden Age actresses to star in his upcoming film Titanic (Fay Wray was among those considered), and upon seeing her enthusiasm in the role, cast her.

Its Been 84 Years GIFs | Tenor

Stuart would be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for this role in 1998, but lost to Kim Basinger in L.A. Confidential.

 

In 2004, Stuart was diagnosed with lung cancer, forcing her to retire (she surprisingly never appeared on the DeathList). She would eventually die of respiratory failure almost three months after her 100th birthday- and was around the same age that present-day Rose was supposed to be in Titanic.

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On this day 14 years ago in 2008 legendary Oscar winning american actor Paul Newman died aged 83.

Husband of actress Joanne Woodward,  Paul had six children , three by his first marriage,  three by his second to Joanne.  He outlived his only son Scott Newman who died of a drugs overdose in 1978.

 

Some of his best known films include Cat on a hot tin roof (1958) opposite Elizabeth Taylor,   The Hustler (1961) with Piper Laurie , The Color of money (1986) alongside Tom Cruise, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid(1969) with Robert Redford and Katharine Ross, Sweet bird of Youth (1962) , Cool Hand Luke(1967) costars including George Kennedy and Dennis Hopper,  The Towering Inferno (1974) and Road to Perdition (2002) opposite  Tom Hanks.

Often cited as one of the best movie stars and actors of the 20th century .

 

 

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American radio comedian, actor and writer Charles Correll died on this day 50 years ago, aged 82.

 

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On this day three years ago in 2019 former French President and official DeathList alumni  Jacques Chirac died aged 86.

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German-born American businessman who founded the first company to manufacture blue jeans Levi Strauss died on this day 120 years ago, aged 73.

 

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