Remembering Those Who Died In 2008

This like every year people who have made a special mark on the world have passed away. From the untimely death of Heath Ledger to the passing of “Deep Throat” 2008 has lost many who made a difference.

Journalists and Writers

Living life to the fullest John McWethy, a retired ABC News correspondent died after a ski accident on February 6.

William F. Buckley, Jr. from the show “Firing Line” passed away on Febuary 27 at the age of 82. He often wrote his column’s for the National Review in a mere 20 minutes.

Arthur C. Clarke died on March 18 at the age of 90. He wrote more than 100 books in the science fiction genre.

Tim Russert of “Meet the Press” died suddenly from a heart attack on June 13. He was 58.

Photo by hyku
Timothy John Russert, Jr. was an American journalist who hosted NBC’s Meet the Press from 1991 until his death in 2008. He was the Washington Bureau Chief for NBC News, and hosted Tim Russert, a weekly interview program on MSNBC.
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Founding editor of New York magazine Clay Felker died on July 1. He was 82.

On July 5 Thomas M. Disch committed suicide in New York City. He was considered on of the most important science fiction writers of his generation.

Leroy Sievers, a National Public Radio commentator who turned his battle with cancer into a radio and online series died from the disease on August 15. He was 53.

An apparent suicide claimed the life of “Infinite Jest” author David Foster Wallace on September 12. He was 47.

The author of “Jurassic Park” and “The Andromeda Strain,” Michael Crichton passed away on November 5. He was 66.

The name who coined the phrase “sci-fi” Forrest J. Ackerman died December 4 at the age of 92. Although not a mainstream author his work was legendary in science-fiction circles.

Sports

Bobby Fischer. Photo Courtesy ChessManiac.com
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On January 17 chess master Bobby Fischer died. He was just 64.

Georgia Frontiere passed away on January 18. She rescued the Los Angeles Ram’s by buying the team, making her a hometown hero.

Jim McKay, the man who uttered “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” for “Wide World of Sports” passed away on June 7. He was 86.

Sports announcer Charlie Jones passed away June 12 at the age of 77.

NFL union boss Gene Upshaw died on August 21 at the age of 63. He helped players get free agency.

Football great Dick Lynch died on September 24. He was a member of the New York Giants broadcasting team. He was 72.

Music

John Stewart, of the Kingston Trio, passed away at the age of 68 on January 19.

Dave Clark Five singer Mike Smith died on February 28 at the age of 64. He passed away just two weeks before his band was inducted into the Pock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Swedish jazz pianist Esbjorn Svensson passed away at the age of 44 on June 14 in a diving accident.

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Isaac Hayes
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Issac Hayes, the voice of “Theme From Shaft”, passed away on August 10. He was 65.

One of the founders of Atlantic Records, Jerry Wexler passed away on August 15 at the age of 91.

The voice of such hits as , “When You’re Hot, You’re Hot,” “East Bound and Down,” and “She Got the Goldmine (I Got the Shaft),” Jerry Reed died September 1. He acted with Burt Reynolds in the “Smokey and the Bandit” movies. He was 71.

Nick Reynolds of the Kingston Trio died on October 2 at the age of 75.

– File photo
John “Mitch” Mitchell (left) was an English drummer, most famous for his membership in The Jimi Hendrix Experience.
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Drummer Mitch Mitchell died November 13 at the age of 61. He was the last surviving member of the Jimi Hendrix Experience.

Rapper MC Breed died November 24 at a friend’s home He was 37 years old.

Actors

On January 10 Vampira left this Earth. Actress Maila Nurmi was 85 and lived in Hollywood. She is thought to be the inspiration of Morticia Adams in the television show “The Addams Family.”

On January 17 Sam the Butcher passed away. Allan Melvin was 84. His character on “The Brady Bunch” as Alice’s butcher boyfriend will be remembered.

Suzanne Pleshette died on Jan. 19 of respiratory failure. She is best remembered as the wife of Bob Newhart on the long-running “The Bob Newhart Show.”

Heath Ledger. – Photo: Focus Features
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Heath Ledger died from an accidental drug overdose on January 22. His young life has been honoured throughout the past year. One of his last roles, the Joker may win him an Oscar this coming year.

Shell Kepler of General Hospital died at the age of 49 on February 1.

On February 10 Roy Scheider passed away at the age of 75. His most memorable role could be the police chief in “Jaws.”

David Groh died at the age of 68 on February 12 from kidney cancer. He played Valerie Harper’s husband in the 1970’s hit “Rhonda.”

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
Also known as: Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (USA) (alternative title)
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On April 5 Charlton Heston passed away at the age of 84. His most memorable role was that of Ben-Hur in the Hollywood classic. He was active in NRA.

On June 2 Paul Sills, co-founder of Second City, passed away. His comedy group introduced some of North America’s favorite comedians including John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Stephen Colbert and Mike Myers. He was 80.

Director and actor, Mel Ferrer, passed away on June 2. He was 90.

Special effects guru Stan Winston died June 15 at the age of 62. His talent raised the dinosaurs for the film “Jurassic Park”.

Cyd Charisse passed away on June 17 at the age of 86. She danced with Fred Astaire and Gene Kelley during the 1940’s and 1950’s in countless movies.

Dody Goodman, on of the star’s from the show “Mary Hartman, Mary hartman” passed away on June 22. She was 93.

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George Carlin
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The man who told the world what not to say during his comedy routine “Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television”, George Carlin passed away on June 22. he was 71.

Bozo, Larry Harmon, died on July 3. He was 53.
the voice on more than 350,000 commericals Don LaFontaine died on September 1. He was 68.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia
Paul newman in Exodus (1960)
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Old Blue Eyes, Paul Newman passed away on September 26. The 83-year-old is widely remembered for his work on films such as “Hud,” “Cool Hand Luke” and “The Color of Money,” his racing career and his charity work. The loving husband of Joanne Woodard was 83.

“Mr. Clean,” House Peters, Jr. died on October 1. He was 92.

Trailer screenshot
Cropped screenshot of Van Johnson from the trailer for the film The Last Time.
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Van Johnson died December 12. He was a major star during the 1940’s and 1950’s. He was 92.

Artist

Tasha Tudor, whose beautiful drawings illustrated children books passed away at the age of 92 on June 18.

Sculptor Tina Allen died from a heart attack on September 9. she was 58.

Adventure

On January 10 Sir Edmund Hillary died at the age of 88. He took life to it’s most extreme fullest as he aided those living in Nepal. He considered himself an ordinary beekeeper.

Dungeons and Dragons creator Gary Gygax passed away on March 4.

Religion

Gordon B. Hinckley, a leader in the Morman Church, passed on January 27. He was the oldest president of the church at the age of 97. Under his care the membership grew to about 13 million.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. – Illustration courtesy of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi organization
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On February 5 the guru to the Beatles, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi passed away. He is considered to be the person who introduced the West to transcendental meditation.

Imam W. Deen Mohammed died on September 9. He guided his followers towards main stream Islam. He was 74.

Politics

Former Indonesian President Suharto passed away on January 27. He was a Cold War ally of the United States. His military regime killed hundreds of thousands of left-wing political opponents.

Johnnie Carr who joined her childhood friend Rosa Parks in the Montgomery bus boycott died on Febuary 22. She was a civil rights activist until her death at 97.

Wikipedia
Jesse Alexander Helms, Jr.
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Jesse Helms died on July 4. The 86-year-old was a senator for 3 decades.

The first black woman to represent Ohio Stephanie Tubbs Jones died on August 20. She was 58.

W. Mark Felt, “Deep Throat”, died on December 18 at the age of 95. His tips led to the Watergate scandal ending Ricard Nixon’s time as president.

Photo courtesy U.S. Senate
W. Mark Felt, also known as “Deep Throat” was an FBI agent who tipped off reporters to the Watergate scandal that toppled Nixon’s presidency
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Fashion

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Yves Saint Laurent
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One of fashion’s icons, Yves Saint Laurent passed away on June 1 from brain cancer. He was 71.

20-year-old model Ruslana Korshunova’s suicide fall from a Manhattan building claimed her life on June 28.

The model whose photographs helped launch the 1960’s sexual revolution, Bettie Page died December 11 at the age of 85.

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The Notorious Bettie Page.
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