So I did something like this last year based on the observation that a lot of famous folk died this year, and that was really freaky (and therefore I just had to share my thoughts with everyone).
It ended being one my most viewed posts, aka a great source of blog views ūüôā And I really enjoyed making it
So I’m doing it again… and here’s hoping the hits keep coming (not that I like¬†benefiting¬†off the deaths of others… c’mon people… you know me better…
I’ll shut up now and here’s the list:
15 –¬†Blake Edwards, 88, American film director, producer and screenwriter (The Pink Panther,¬†Breakfast at Tiffany’s), pneumonia.
Bob Feller, 92, American baseball player (Cleveland Indians), member of Baseball Hall of Fame, leukemia.
7 – Elizabeth Edwards, 61,¬†wife of former Senator¬†John Edwards, breast cancer. (Don’t you just wanna punch John Edwards for being such a douche?)
*If you lived in Toronto from the 1980’s until now and owned a television, I¬†guarantee¬†you would’ve been fortunate enough to hear the awesome voice of Mark Dailey, who voiceovers were a fixture on City TV. No matter where you were in Toronto, Mark Dailey was everywhere.
5 –¬†Don Meredith, 72, American football player (Dallas Cowboys) and commentator (Monday Night Football), brain hemorrhage.
29 – Al Masini, 80, creator of Entertainment Tonight, cancer. *So he’s the reason journalism has plummeted to the depths of covering bozos like Paris Hilton, Michael Jackson, Anna Nicole Smith, Kim Kardashian, Jon & Kate Gosselin and a bunch of other people I’m ashamed to tell you to tell you about.
28 –¬†Leslie Nielsen, 84, Canadian-born American actor (Airplane!,¬†The Naked Gun), pneumonia. (Pic, to the right)
Samuel T. Cohen, 89, American physicist, inventor of the¬†neutron bomb, cancer.
27 –¬†Irvin Kershner, 87, American film director (Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back), lung cancer.
25 –¬†Doris McCarthy, 100, Canadian artist.
* I mention this one because her work can be found all over the campus of her alma matter of the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus (aka: where I go to school).
19 –¬†Pat Burns, 58, Canadian¬†National Hockey League coach (Canadiens,¬†Maple Leafs,¬†Bruins and¬†Devils), lung cancer. *He was one of greatest coaches in NHL and Toronto Maple Leaf history. He helped guide the Leafs to two conference championships in 1993 & 1994, also winning a Jack Adams award for best coach in ’93 – one of three he would win in his career. He eventually won the Stanley Cup as coach of the New Jersey Devils in 2003. ¬†He had a strong reputation of getting the most out of his players and conducted himself with the heart of a warrior. And although he succumbed to cancer, it took three bouts of it to finally claim him, defeating the first two – colon cancer in 2oo4 and liver cancer in 2005.
10 –¬†Nicolo Rizzuto, 86, Italian-born Canadian mafia leader (Rizzuto crime family), shot.
9 –¬†Albert Wesley Johnson, 87, Canadian civil servant, President of¬†Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (1975‚Äď1982), after long illness.
6 –¬†Michael Seifert, 86, Soviet-born Nazi war criminal, complications from a fall. (‘Bout time, eh?)
4 –¬†Sparky Anderson, 76, American baseball player and manager (Cincinnati Reds,¬†Detroit Tigers), member of¬†Baseball Hall of Fame, complications from dementia.
3 –¬†Jerry Bock, 81, American musical theater composer (Fiddler on the Roof,¬†Fiorello!), heart failure.
*I used to like Fiddler on the Roof… that was until I saw it in Toronto back in 2009 with Harvey Fierstein as Tevye. They really altered/butchered too much of the script, which honestly left me with a feeling that non-Jews would leave the¬†theater¬†with a sour taste of what Shtetl Jews were like. Thankfully Mr. Bock was responsible for helping to create what I¬†believe¬†to be the best part of the play – the music.
26 –¬†Paul the Octopus, 2, British-born¬†World Cup oracle octopus (Sea Life Centre in¬†Oberhausen, Germany), natural causes. *In the words of Fred Armisen’s portrayal of Joy Behar on SNL’s The View sketch: “So what, who cares?”
22 – Dennis Simpson, 59, ¬†Canadian actor and musician, brain¬†hemorrhage. Young canadians (or young at the time), will recall Simpson as the host of TVO’s Polka Dot Door.
19 – Tom Bosley, 83, American actor (Happy Days,¬†Father Dowling Mysteries), heart failure.
14 –¬†Barbara Billingsley, 94, American actress (Leave It to Beaver).
29 –¬†Tony Curtis, 85, American actor (Some Like It Hot,¬†Spartacus,¬†The Defiant Ones), cardiac arrest.
27 –¬†George Blanda, 83, American¬†Hall of Fame football player (Chicago Bears,¬†Houston Oilers,¬†Oakland Raiders).
26 –¬†Gloria Stuart, 100, American film actress (The Invisible Man,¬†Titanic), respiratory failure.
8 –¬†Rich Cronin, 36, American pop singer and songwriter (LFO), stroke related to¬†acute myelogenous leukemia. (“But I think it’s fly when the girls drop by in the summer, in the summer.”)
2 –¬†Leo Trepp, 97, German-born American rabbi, last surviving German rabbinical witness to¬†the Holocaust. *¬†Trepp was arrested and placed in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp on the night of Kristallnacht. While he only spent 18 days in the camp (he was released thanks to the¬†the intervention of the¬†Joseph Hertz, the¬†Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom),¬†Trepp saw his role as being part of “a very rewarding rabbinate because the Jews needed me.”
12 –¬†Richie Hayward, 64,¬†American drummer (Little Feat),¬†liver cancer.
9 – Senator¬†Ted Stevens, 86,¬†American politician,¬†Senator from Alaska (1968‚Äď2009),¬†plane crash.
28 –¬†Lorenzen Wright, 34,¬†American basketball player (Memphis Grizzlies),¬†shot.
13 –¬†George Steinbrenner, 80,¬†American baseball team owner (New York Yankees),¬†heart attack.
11 –¬†Bob Sheppard, 99,¬†American public address announcer (New York Yankees,¬†New York Giants).
5 –¬†Bob Probert, 45,¬†Canadian ice hockey player (Detroit Red Wings,¬†Chicago Blackhawks), suspected¬†heart attack. *3300 penalty minutes in 20 seasons, he also scored the last goal ever at Maple Leaf Gardens.
28 – Senator¬†Robert Byrd, 92,¬†American politician,¬†U.S. Representative (1953‚Äď1959),¬†Senator from¬†West Virginia (1959‚Äď2010).
Bill Aucoin, 66,¬†American¬†band manager¬†(Kiss),¬†complications¬†from¬†prostate cancer.
23 –¬†Pete Quaife, 66,¬†British bassist (The Kinks),¬†kidney failure.
19 –¬†Manute Bol, 47,¬†Sudanese basketball player and¬†activist,¬†kidney failure and¬†Stevens‚ÄďJohnson syndrome.
7 ‚Äď¬†Rav¬†Mordechai Eliyahu, 81,¬†Israeli rabbi,¬†Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel(1983‚Äď1993).
6 –¬†Marvin Isley, 56,¬†American¬†bassist¬†(The Isley Brothers,¬†Isley-Jasper-Isley),¬†complications¬†of¬†diabetes.
3 –¬†Rue McClanahan, 76,¬†American actress (The Golden Girls,¬†Maude),¬†stroke.
2 –¬†John Wooden, 99, American basketball player (Purdue, Indianapolis Kautskys) and coach (UCLA, 1948‚Äď1975).
29 –¬†Dennis Hopper, 74,¬†American actor and¬†film director (Easy Rider),¬†prostate cancer.
28 – Gary Coleman, 42,¬†American actor (Diff’rent Strokes),¬†intracranial hemorrhage.
23 –¬†Jos√© Lima, 37,¬†Dominican baseball player,¬†heart attack
24-¬†Paul Gray, 38,¬†American heavy metal bassist (Slipknot), accidental¬†fentanyl and¬†morphine overdose.
16 –¬†Ronnie James Dio, 67,¬†American heavy metal singer (Black Sabbath,¬†Rainbow,¬†Dio),¬†stomach cancer.
4 –¬†Ernie Harwell, 92, American baseball sportscaster (Detroit Tigers), cholangiocarcinoma.
21 –¬†Juan Antonio Samaranch, 89,¬†Spanish Olympic official,President of the¬†International Olympic Committee (1980‚Äď2001),¬†heart failure.
10 – Lech KaczyŇĄski, 60,¬†President of Poland,¬†killed in the¬†Polish Air Force Tu-154 plane crash, which killed several top Polish politicians and diplomats.
24 –¬†Jim Marshall, 74,¬†American photographer. *He was the official photographer of the Woodstock Music Festival in 1969, and photographed several rock stars including the Beatles (he was the only photographer allowed backstage during their shows) & Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash & Jimi Hendrix.
Robert Culp, 79,¬†American actor (I Spy,¬†The Greatest American Hero,¬†Everybody Loves Raymond), heart attack.
14 –¬†Peter Graves, 83, American actor (Mission: Impossible, Airplane!), heart attack.
13 –¬†He Pingping, 21,¬†Chinese dwarf, shortest man who was able to walk, heart¬†complications.
12 –¬†David Ahenakew, 76,¬†Canadian First Nations leader and¬†politician (former National Chief of the¬†Assembly of First Nations),¬†cancer. *On December 13, 2002, Ahenakew gave a speech to an FSIN group where¬†he made references to “goddamn immigrants” in Canada during his speech. He also called¬†Jews¬†were a disease in Germany and that¬†Hitler was trying to “clean up Europe” when he “fried six million of those guys.” He also stated his opinion that¬†Israel and theUnited States (specifically mentioning¬†George W. Bush) were going to start the next world war.
Too bad he won’t be around to see it…
10 – Corey Haim, 38,¬†Canadian actor (Lucas,¬†The Lost Boys,¬†License to Drive),¬†pneumonia. *Another troubled teen heartthrob to bite the dust… A Jewish boy from Toronto as well, he’s buried in Pardes Shalom¬†Cemetery in Vaughan, the same burial grounds where I may end up (G-d forbid anytime soon).
20 –¬†Alexander Haig, 85,¬†American politician and diplomat,¬†Secretary of State (1981‚Äď1982, during Reagan’s presidency),¬†complications from an¬†infection.
14 – Doug Fieger, 57,¬†American musician (The Knack),¬†lung cancer. *My Sharona
13 –¬†Dale Hawkins, 73,¬†American rockabilly musician,¬†colorectal cancer.
11 –¬†Alexander McQueen, 40,¬†British fashion designer,¬†suicide by¬†hanging.
12 –¬†Nodar Kumaritashvili, 21,¬†Georgian luger, national team member for the¬†2010 Winter Olympics, training¬†accident.
10 –¬†Charlie Wilson, 76,¬†American politician,¬†U.S. Representative (1973‚Äď1997), subject of¬†Charlie Wilson’s War,¬†pulmonary arrest.
31 –¬†Pauly Fuemana, 40,¬†New Zealand musician (OMC), after short illness. *How Bizarre: ¬†“Ooh baby x2, it’s making me crazy x2, every time I look around…”
27 – J.D. Salinger,¬†American author (The Catcher in the Rye),¬†natural causes.
11 – Miep Gies, 100,¬†Dutch humanitarian,¬†protector of¬†Anne Frank and her family during¬†WWII, complications following a¬†fall.
4-¬†Casey Johnson, 30,¬†American socialite,¬†Johnson & Johnson heiress,¬†diabetic ketoacidosis. *She was one of the great-great¬†granddaughters¬†of Robert Wood Johnson (one of the two Johnsons). Apparently, she was also the fiance of another socialite – Tila Tequila, with whom she had adopted a girl.