Archives for : DEATH

Gilda Radner: Born June 28, 1946-May 20, 1989





Died on this date: Comedian Gilda Radner made millions of people laugh with the zany characters she created as a member of the original cast of television’s “Saturday Night Live.”

Comedian Gilda Radner made millions of people laugh with the zany characters she created as a member of the original cast of television’s “Saturday Night Live.”

As a gawky, squawky-voiced satirist with a frizzy tangle of hair, Radner created such characters as Roseanne Roseannadana, a gross, lisping newscaster; Emily Litella, a dithery, confused editorialist; Candy Slice, a masochistic punk rock star, and coed Rhonda Weiss, a gum-chewing Jewish “princess” from Long Island.

Her characterizations brought her an Emmy in 1978 for outstanding performance as an actress on “Saturday Night Live,” where she was a member of the Not Ready for Prime Time Players with Chevy Chase, John Belushi, Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd, who all went on to stardom.

She became a member of Toronto’s Second City improvisational comedy troupe, an offshoot of the famed Chicago company. Her fellow performers included Aykroyd and Murray, who would be with Radner again when “Saturday Night Live” premiered on NBC in October 1975.

While still on the show, Radner appeared in 1979 in a short-lived, one-woman Broadway show called “Gilda Live,” which was produced as a movie a year later and as an album, “Live From New York Gilda Radner.”

She left “Saturday Night Live” in 1980, making five films and appearing in a Broadway play in the next six years. The movies included “The Woman in Red” and “Haunted Honeymoon,” both written and directed by Gene Wilder, whom she met on the set of the film “Hanky Panky” in 1981 and married three years later in southern France.

Jimmy Ruffin: Rest In Peace


Legendary Motown singer, and brother of the late great, David Ruffin has passed away  at the age of 78, Wednesday morning from a long illness, he died in Las Vegas NV, Wednesday says a close family member, details about the upcoming funeral arraignments have yet to be announced.

Rest In Paradise Tim Hauser (December 12, 1941 – October 16, 2014


 Tim Hauser (December 12, 1941 – October 16, 2014) was a singer and founder-member of the vocal group The Manhattan Transfer.

Miles Davis (May 26th 1926-September 28th 1991)



Remembering the Incomprable Mr Miles Davis.- May 26th 1926-September 28th 1991.

Loretta Stamos – 1939-2014



“Loretta Stamos – 1939-2014 The love of my life passed away yesterday in her home surrounded by her children and grandchildren,” the former “Full House” star wrote Tuesday along with a sweet photo of the two of them from when he was a child.


James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix (November 27, 1942 – September 18, 1970)





Remembering a Legend and the best Guitarist ever Jimi Hendrix, who passed away 44 years ago today.

Jimi was a Singer-songwriter, musician, producer, recording studio entrepreneur. He also played bass, keyboards, percussion.
What are your favorites songs by Jimi?

James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix (born Johnny Allen Hendrix; (November 27, 1942 – September 18, 1970) was an American musician and singer-songwriter. He is widely considered to be the greatest electric guitarist in music history and one of the most influential musicians of his era despite his mainstream exposure being limited to four years.

He achieved fame in the United States following his 1967 performance at the Monterey Pop Festival after initial success in Europe with his group The Jimi Hendrix Experience. Later, he headlined the iconic 1969 Woodstock Festival and the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival. He favored raw overdriven amplifiers with high gain and treble and was instrumental in developing the previously undesirable technique of guitar amplifier feedback.

Hendrix helped to popularize use of the wah-wah pedal in mainstream rock, which he often used to deliver tonal exaggerations in his solos, particularly with high bends, complex guitar playing, and use of legato.Hendrix was a pioneer in experimentation with stereophonic phasing effects in rock music recordings.

He was influenced by electric blues artists such as B.B. King, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Albert King and Elmore James, surf rock guitarist Dick Dale, rhythm and blues and soul guitarists Curtis Mayfield and Steve Cropper, and the jazz guitarist Wes Montgomery. Hendrix began dressing and wearing a moustache like Little Richard when he performed and recorded in his band from March 1, 1964, through to the spring of 1965. In 1966, he stated, “I want to do with my guitar what Little Richard does with his voice”.

Hendrix won several prestigious rock music awards during his lifetime, and many more posthumously. The Jimi Hendrix Experience was inducted into the US Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. The award’s biography noted that Jimi Hendrix “expanded the range and vocabulary of the electric guitar into areas no musician had ever ventured before. His boundless drive, technical ability and creative application of such effects as wah-wah and distortion forever transformed the sound of rock and roll.

“Hendrix was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. An English Heritage blue plaque was erected to identify his former residence on Brook Street, London, in September 1997. A star for Hendrix on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was dedicated on November 14, 1991 at 6627 Hollywood Boulevard.

In 2005, his debut US album, Are You Experienced, was one of 50 recordings added that year to the United States National Recording Registry to “be preserved for all time” in the Library of Congress as “part of the nation’s audio legacy.” Rolling Stone named Hendrix the top guitarist on its list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all-time in 2003.

Hendrix is widely known for and associated with the use of psychedelic drugs, most notably lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), as were many other famous musicians and celebrities of that time.

Early on September 18, 1970, Jimi Hendrix died of asphyxiation.


Norman Whitfield (May 12th 1940-September 16th 2008)



In Loving Memory and on this day in 2008. The Great Mr Norman Whitfield- May 12th 1940-Sept 16th 2008.

Tupac Amaru Shakur (June 16, 1971 – September 13, 1996)


Bobby Howard Byrd (August 15, 1934 – September 12, 2007)




In remembrance of Soul legend Bobby Howard Byrd (August 15, 1934 – September 12, 2007)

Lieutenant Emily J.T. Perez(February 19, 1983- Septemeber 12, 2006)



In remembrance of Perez was born into a military family in Heidelberg, Germany, and moved to Fort Washington in 1998. A woman repeatedly described as focused, tenacious and passionate, she was an avid reader from a young age and eventually finished near the top of her class at Oxon Hill High School. From early on, she wanted to be a soldier, her friends recalled, and she became wing commander of Junior ROTC at Oxon Hill.

Emily J.T. Perez, a determined 23-year-old from Prince George’s County, rose to the top of her high school class and then became the first minority female command sergeant in the history of the U.S. Military Academy.

She was the 64th female member of the U.S. military to be killed in Iraq or Afghanistan and the 40th West Point graduate killed since Sept. 11, 2001. Another female West Point graduate, Laura M. Walker of the Class of 2003, was killed in Afghanistan.


Richard Kiel (September 13, 1939 – September,10 2014)



Kiel died on September 10, 2014, aged 74, 3 days shy from turning 75.He had been admitted to a hospital in Fresno, California, after breaking his leg the previous week.

S. Truett Kathy (March 14, 1921 – September 8, 2014)


Chick-Fil-A founder Truett Kathy has passed away. He was 93.

Erma Franklin (March 13th 1938-September 7th 2002)



In Loving Memory and on this day in 2002.

The beautiful Erma Franklin March 13th 1938-Sept 7th 2002.Elder sister of Aretha and the original singer of the classic ”Piece of My Heart”

Simone Battle: (June 17, 1989 – September 5, 2014)


Simone Battle was an American actress and singer from Los Angeles, California. She was a finalist on The X Factor in 2011.


25-year-old Battle was a singer in the girl group “GRL” … which was the reboot of the Pussycat Dolls. She signed on with the group after her run on “X Factor” … where she was a finalist, making it into the top 17.

The L.A. County Cororner’s Office tells us Battle’s autopsy has not been completed yet … so, nothing has been ruled out as cause of death.

Simone’s father told us she was found in the bedroom of her apartment in a West Hollywood neighborhood. He described her home as a guest house of a larger residence. 

Joan Rivers: Rest In Paradise (June 8, 1933 – September 4, 2014)


In recent years, death came up a lot in Rivers’ interviews and jokes as she coped with the loss of good friends. The night before she was hospitalized, Rivers did an hour of stand-up at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in New York City, where she joked, according to the New York Daily News: “I’m 81 — I could go at any moment. I could fall over right here and you all could say, ‘I was there!’”

She told The Times of London four years ago that she “would not want to live if I could not perform. It’s in my will. I am not to be revived unless I can do an hour of stand-up. I don’t fear it.”

Emmett Till (July 25, 1941 – August 28, 1955)






In memory, Emmett Till (July 25, 1941 – August 28, 1955). Lynched this day in history. Till was crucified by the mainstream press. Headlines from newspapers such as the Washington Post referred to him as the “Wolf-Whistler.”

(A 9/19/1955 article in the Post begins: “Two white men, accused of killing a wolf-whistling Negro boy, went on trial in a steamy Mississippi Delta courtroom today, their two-year-old boys in their laps.”

Till’s mother’s courageous decision, to have an open casket funeral and share photos of his mutilated body with the world, helped inspire the modern civil rights movement. Here are classroom resources about Emmett Till: A key primary document is the Look Magazine interview with the murderers:

Mike Brown: Rest In Paradise


Heartbreaking image of Michael Brown, Sr. at his son’s burial. (Photo by Richard Perry, AFP/Getty Images)

educator Dr. Lucy E. Moten





Pioneering educator Dr. Lucy E. Moten passed away on this date in 1933.

Born in Farquier County, Virginia, on an unknown date in 1851, Lucy Moten was the daughter of free African Americans, Benjamin and Julia Witchers Moten. Young Lucy’s parents were so impressed with her early intellectual development that they relocated to Washington, D.C., so that she could attend a school for free African Americans conducted by John F. Cook Sr. When public schools for African Americans opened in the District of Columbia in 1862, the Motens saw to it that their daughter was enrolled. It was probably this early thrust into the world of academia that resulted in Moten’s lifetime commitment to education.

After graduating from Howard University in 1870, Dr. Moten began her teaching career in the primary division of the O Street School in Washington, D.C. As a teacher she continued to pursue her academic and professional training, graduating from the Normal School at Salem, Massachusetts, in 1876. In addition, she graduated with honors from the Spencerian Business College in 1883 and took classes in public speaking with Alfred Townsend, a respected Washington, D.C., teacher of the period.

Armed with an excellent academic record and a recommendation from Frederick Douglass, Moten was appointed and served as principal of Miner Normal School in Washington, D.C., from 1883 to 1920. For twenty-five years Miner Normal School was recognized as one of the top teacher-training institutions in America. Under Moten’s leadership, the school’s faculty and admission standards were raised and the curriculum was extended to a two-year program. Also during her tenure, a new Miner facility was built in 1914. Moten helped plan the design, securing well-lighted and well-ventilated stairs and corridors inside the structure.

According to official documents and correspondence dating to her tenure at Miner Normal School, Moten had strong opinions about teacher qualifications: “The teacher must be first class in every particular, a professionally trained person whose personality will impress itself on … pupils always for their best good. The aesthetic must be looked after as well as the moral and the physical.” Moten trained meticulous, punctual, accurate, and thorough teachers who were recruited by state superintendents throughout the country.

After Moten received a medical degree from Howard Medical School in 1897, she was able to treat the medical needs of her students and establish a course in physical hygiene. By linking her professional advancement with that of the school, Dr. Moten became an inspiration to her students, instilling cultural pride, dedication, and discipline as well as developing their intelligence. Her emphasis on personal morals also influenced her students, provoking them to reach for higher goals.

For four decades, Miner trained the majority of teachers employed in Washington’s African-American schools. Moten’s teaching was not limited to Miner, however. She spent many summers training teachers in the South, which led to further graduate work at New York University in the field of education. Her commitment to education also led her to Europe, where she broadened her educational perspective and came upon the architectural style that she decided would be used in building the new Miner Normal School, a replica of Christ’s College in Cambridge, England.

Dr. Lucy E. Moten was struck and killed by a taxi in New York’s Times Square on August 24, 1933. A pioneer in education even in death, she bequeathed more than $51,000 to Howard University. Ironically, given her cause of death, the money was to be used to fund student travel regardless of the recipient’s sex, color, or creed. In 1954, a Washington, D.C., elementary school was named in her honor.


Phyllis Diller (July 17, 1917-August. 20, 2012)




Died on this date: Phyllis Diller, a zany housewife-turned-stand-up comic with the electrified hairdo, was known for her outlandish wardrobe and her ability to deliver a barrage of self-deprecating jokes punctuated by her trademark laugh.


Phyllis Diller, a zany housewife-turned-stand-up comic with the electrified hairdo, was known for her outlandish wardrobe and her ability to deliver a barrage of self-deprecating jokes punctuated by her trademark laugh.


As a professional comedian, Diller was a late bloomer: The Ohio native was an Alameda, Calif., mother of five when she made her nightclub debut at the Purple Onion in San Francisco in 1955 — at age 37.


Known for her adept timing and precisely structured jokes, Diller took pride in being able to deliver as many as 12 punch lines per minute.


The first laugh came easy. With her fright-wig hair, a fake-jeweled cigarette holder, gloves, ankle boots and garish attire, she merely had to walk on stage.


Diller was always the first to address her colorfully eccentric stage persona, describing herself as “The Elizabeth Taylor of ‘The Twilight Zone’” and a woman who once worked “as a lampshade in a whorehouse.”


During her long career, she was in more than two dozen movies, including three with Bob Hope, with whom she also appeared on numerous TV specials and traveled to Vietnam to entertain U.S. troops.


She rose swiftly up the show business ladder, appearing as a contestant on Groucho Marx’s TV quiz show “You Bet Your Life” in 1958, the same year she made the first of many appearances on “The Tonight Show” with Jack Paar.


By 1962, she was performing at Carnegie Hall.


Unlike most performers, the older Diller got, the better she looked. Of course she had help — a lot of it.


Diller’s publicist initially warned her not to get a face-lift, believing that a new and facially improved Diller would ruin her career.


Instead, Diller’s changing face simply provided her with more comic fodder for her act:
“I’ve been done over so many times that no two parts of my body are the same age,” she’d say in her act. “When I die, God himself won’t know me. My face has been pulled up more times than Bill Clinton’s pants.”


Kimora Lee Simmons: Paying Homage


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