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Famous  People Who Left Us in 2008 Tags: 2008    today    show    nbc    dead    died    passed    away    celebs    celebrity    charlton    heston    cyd    charrise    van    johnson    heath    ledger     
Added: 28th December 2008
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Posted By: Cliffy
Posted by: Cliffy on 2008-12-28 
Here is a more extensive list, but the this list doesn't list Sammy Baugh who passed this month:
JANUARY

* Erich Kaestner, 107. Believed to be Germany's last World War I veteran. Jan. 1.
* Dr. Pramod Karan Sethi, 80. Inventor of low-cost artificial foot that helped millions in developing nations. Jan. 6.
* Philip Agee, 72. Renegade CIA agent whose naming of operatives led to law against exposing spies. Jan. 7.
* Sir Edmund Hillary, 88. Conquered Mount Everest; one of 20th century's greatest adventurers. Jan. 11.
* Richard Knerr, 82. Co-founded Wham-O toy company that popularized Hula Hoop, Frisbee. Jan. 14.
* Dr. Judah Folkman, 74. Researcher who worked to cut off cancer from its blood supply, giving hope for a cure. Jan. 14.
* Bobby Fischer, 64. Reclusive chess genius who dethroned Soviet champion in 1972. Jan. 17.
* Suzanne Pleshette, 70. Beautiful, husky-voiced actress; sardonic wife on The Bob Newhart Show. Jan. 19.
* Kenneth Eugene Parnell, 76. Notorious California child molester; held young Steven Stayner for years. Jan. 20.
* Heath Ledger, 28. Actor nominated for Oscar for Brokeback Mountain; the Joker in The Dark Knight. Jan. 22. Drug overdose.
* Richard Darman, 64. White House budget director; helped persuade first President Bush to compromise on new taxes. Jan. 25.
* George Habash, 81. His PLO faction gained notoriety for 1970 hijackings of four Western airliners. Jan. 26.
* Suharto, 86. Indonesian president, a Cold War U.S. ally whose brutal regime killed hundreds of thousands. Jan. 27.
* Gordon B. Hinckley, 97. Led Mormon church during major period of expansion. Jan. 27.

FEBRUARY

* Earl L. Butz, 98. U.S. agriculture secretary; forced out in 1976 over racist joke. Feb. 2.
* Harry Richard Landis, 108. One of two surviving U.S. veterans of World War I. Feb. 4.
* Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, around 91. Beatles' guru; introduced transcendental meditation to West. Feb. 5.
* Roy Scheider, 75. Two-time Oscar nominee (The French Connection, All That Jazz); police chief in Jaws. Feb. 10.
* Rep. Tom Lantos, 80. 14-term California congressman; forceful voice for human rights. Feb. 11.
* Imad Mughniyeh, 45. One of world's most wanted terrorists; suspected in 1980s attacks on Americans in Lebanon. Feb. 12. Car bombing.
* Evan Mecham, 83. Firebrand Arizona governor; removed in 1988 impeachment trial. Feb. 21.
* Douglas A. Fraser, 91. Led United Auto Workers through difficult times. Feb. 23.
* William F. Buckley Jr., 82. Erudite author, editor; helped revive conservative movement. Feb. 27.

MARCH

* Gary Gygax, 69. Co-created Dungeons amp; Dragons; father of role-playing games. March 4.
* Joseph Weizenbaum, 85. Computer programmer; helped advance artificial intelligence. March 5.
* Former Sen. Howard Metzenbaum, 90. Liberal Ohio Democrat who challenged big business. March 12.
* Anthony Minghella, 54. Oscar-winning director, turned literary works (The English Patient) into acclaimed movies. March 18. Hemorrhage.
* Paul Scofield, 86. British actor; won Oscar for A Man for All Seasons. March 19.
* Arthur C. Clarke, 90. Visionary science fiction writer (2001: A Space Odyssey,) March 19.
* Richard Widmark, 93. Hollywood leading man; made sensational debut as a giggling killer (Kiss of Death.) Died in Roxbury, Conn. on March 24.
* Bill Dickinson, 82. 14-term Alabama congressman; championed strong defense. March 31.
* Robert F. Goheen, 88. He led Princeton University in time of rapid change. March 31.

APRIL

* Charlton Heston, 84. Oscar winner (Ben-Hur); later headed National Rifle Association. April 5.
* Sgt. Merlin German, 22. Marine severely injured in Iraq; became symbol of resilience. April 11.
* John A. Wheeler, 96. Physicist; coined black holes. April 13.
* Edward Lorenz, 90. Father of chaos theory, butterfly effect concept. April 16.
* Albert Hofmann, 102. Discoverer of LSD, which inspired -- and arguably corrupted -- millions in 1960s. April 29.

MAY

* Deborah Jeane Palfrey, 52. D.C. Madam convicted of running elite prostitution ring. May 1. Suicide.
* Mildred Loving, 68. Black woman whose challenge to Virginia's interracial marriage ban led to landmark ruling. May 2.
* Irvine Robbins, 90. Co-founded Baskin-Robbins, brought exotic ice cream to every corner of America. May 5.
* Eddy Arnold, 89. Country singer known for his mellow baritone (Make the World Go Away.) May 8.
* Robert Rauschenberg, 82. His use of odd and everyday articles made him an art world giant. May 12.
* Robert Mondavi, 94. Vintner who helped Napa Valley become a wine-lovers' mecca. May 16.
* Huntington Hartford, 97. Aamp;P grocery heir; burned through most of $100 million fortune. May 19.
* Hamilton Jordan, 63. Political strategist; helped Jimmy Carter win presidency. May 20.
* Dick Martin, 86. Zany co-host of Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In, which took television by storm in 1960s. May 24.
* J.R. Simplot, 99. Idaho's billionaire potato king. May 25.
* Sydney Pollack, 73. Oscar-winning director, a Hollywood mainstay (Tootsie, Out of Africa.) May 26.
* Harvey Korman, 81. Emmy winner for The Carol Burnett Show; conniving politician in Blazing Saddles. May 29.

JUNE

* Yves Saint Laurent, 71. One of most influential fashion designers of the 20th century. June 1.
* Bo Diddley, 79. Founding father of rock 'n' roll, known for shave and a haircut, two bits rhythm. June 2.
* Jim McKay, 86. Wide World of Sports host; told Americans about killings at 1972 Olympics. Former Westport resident died on June 7.
* Tim Russert, 58. Host of Meet the Press whose personality and passion made him beloved in Washington. June 13.
* Cyd Charisse, 86. Dancer turned actress; starred in musicals with Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly. June 17.
* George Carlin, 71. The dean of counterculture comedians who taught us Seven Words You Can Never Say On TV. June 22.

JULY

* Clay Felker, 82. Revolutionized city magazines as New York's founding editor. July 1.
* Larry Harmon, 83. He turned Bozo the Clown into a show business staple. July 3.
* Former Sen. Jesse Helms, 86. A champion of conservatism who spent 30 years in Congress. July 4.
* Sir John Templeton, 95. Mutual fund pioneer; created Templeton Prize for advancement in spiritual matters. July 8.
* Dr. Michael E. DeBakey, 99. Heart surgeon who pioneered now-common procedures such as bypass surgery. July 11.
* Tony Snow, 53. White House press secretary who cheerfully sparred with reporters. July 12. Colon cancer.
* Estelle Getty, 84. Actress; Sophia on Golden Girls. July 22.
* Randy Pausch, 47. His last lecture about facing death became Internet sensation, best-selling book. July 25.
* Bruce E. Ivins, 62. Army scientist named as top suspect in 2001 anthrax attacks. July 29. Suicide.
* Anne Armstrong, 80. Advanced women's role in GOP, was ambassador to Britain. July 30.

AUGUST

* Alexander Solzhenitsyn, 89. Nobel-winning Russian author who chronicled Stalin's slave labor camps. Aug. 3.
* Mahmoud Darwish, 67. Palestinian poet who eloquently told of his people's experiences. Aug. 9.
* Bernie Mac, 50. One of Original Kings of Comedy who connected with audiences across a wide spectrum (Ocean's Eleven.) Aug. 9. Pneumonia.
* Isaac Hayes, 65. Soul crooner who laid groundwork for disco; won Oscar, Grammy for Theme From Shaft. Aug. 10.
* Bill Gwatney, 48. Arkansas Democratic chairman. Aug. 13. Shot by intruder.
* Jerry Wexler, 91. Record producer; coined rhythm and blues, worked with Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles. Aug. 15.
* Gene Upshaw, 63. Football star; leader of NFL players union. Aug. 20.

SEPTEMBER

* Robert Giroux, 94. Giant of publishing; guided dozens of writers at Farrar, Straus amp; Giroux. Sept. 5.
* W.D. Mohammed, 74. Succeeded his father as Nation of Islam leader. Sept. 9.
* David Foster Wallace, 46. Author famed for complex, darkly witty works (Infinite Jest.) Sept. 12. Suicide.
* Norman Whitfield, 67. Motown songwriter, producer (I Heard It Through the Grapevine.) Sept. 16.
* Paul Newman, 83. Oscar-winning actor/philanthropist who never lost the heartthrob cool of his anti-hero performances. Longtime Westport resident died Sept. 26.

OCTOBER

* Joerg Haider, 58. Made his rightist party into powerful force in Austria. Oct. 11. Vehicular accident.
* Levi Stubbs, 72. Dynamic Four Tops frontman (Baby I Need Your Loving.) Oct. 17.
* George Keller, 84. Oversaw 1984 formation of energy giant Chevron. Oct. 17.
* Mr. Blackwell, 86. Designer whose worst-dressed list skewered fashion felonies. Oct. 19.
* Studs Terkel, 96. Broadcaster, Pulitzer-winning author; celebrated the common people. Oct. 31.

NOVEMBER

* Yma Sumac, 86. Peruvian soprano whose stunning range wowed audiences in 1950s. Nov. 1.
* Madelyn Payne Dunham, 86. Barack Obama's grandmother, who helped raise him. Nov. 2.
* Steve Fossett, 63. Millionaire adventurer who vanished during 2007 flight. His death confirmed Nov. 3.
* Michael Crichton, 66. Author whose books became blockbuster films (Jurassic Park.) Nov. 4.
* Miriam Makeba, 76. South African singer who wooed the world with her sultry voice. Nov. 10.
* Cecil Underwood, 86. Elected West Virginia governor in 1956 -- and again in 1996. Nov. 24.
* William Gibson, 94. Playwright; dramatized Helen Keller's story in The Miracle Worker. Nov. 25.
* Edna Parker, 115. World's oldest person. Nov. 26.
* The Rev. George M. Docherty, 97. His 1954 sermon got under God into Pledge of Allegiance. Nov. 27.

DECEMBER

* Odetta, 77. Folk singer with powerful voice who inspired civil rights marchers. Dec. 2.
* Forrest J Ackerman, 92. Editor and literary agent; credited with coining term sci-fi. Dec. 4.
* Patriarch Alexy II. 79. Russian Orthodox Church head; oversaw post-Soviet era's religious revival. Dec. 5.
* Sunny von Bulow, 76. Comatose heiress; husband was acquitted of attempted murder. Dec. 6.
* Bettie Page, 85. Beauty who daringly bared it all in the straitlaced '50s. Dec. 11.
* Van Johnson, 92. Boy-next-door Hollywood star (30 Seconds Over Tokyo.) Dec. 12.
* W. Mark Felt, 95. The former FBI second-in-command who revealed himself as Deep Throat 30 years after he tipped off reporters to the Watergate scandal that toppled a president. Dec. 18.
* Robert Mulligan, 83. The Academy Award-nominated director of To Kill a Mockingbird. Mulligan died Dec. 20 at his home in Lyme, Conn.
* Eartha Kitt, 81. A sultry singer, dancer and actress who rose from South Carolina cotton fields to become a symbol of elegance and sensuality. The Weston resident died on Dec. 25.
* Harold Pinter, 78. British playwright whose distinctive contribution to the stage was recognized with the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005. Dec. 25.
Posted by: Jedwgrn on 2008-12-28 
Bravo Cliffy!
Posted by: Lava1964 on 2008-12-28 
Excellent work, Cliffy! It's always amazing when I read these end-of-the-year necrologies the names of those I didn't realized had passed away.

We could have probably done without listing the child molester who died in January.
Posted by: donmac101 on 2008-12-28 
Without the EVIL of the world, how are we to recognise the GOOD?
Posted by: Teresa on 2008-12-28 
what a loss for everyone . .
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