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Archive for the ‘Condolences’ Category

The following industry personalities, athletes and politicians passed away in 2021 and heartfelt condolences are extended to their families, friends and fans.

Before we get to the list, however, we need to take a moment of silence to remember all those who have been lost this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The celebrities we have lost this year (in alphabetical order):

Hank Aaron (Pro Baseball Player)
Granville Adams (Actor, Oz)
Raymond Allen (Actor, Sanford and Son)
Michael Apted (British Director, Coal Miner’s Daughter, Gorillas in the Mist and Nell)
Ed Asner (Legendary Actor, Lou Grant and The Mary Tyler Moore Show)

Eve Babitz (Chronicler and Muse of the L.A. Scene)
F. Lee Bailey (Famed Lawyer to Patty Hearst and OJ Simpson)
Lisa Banes (Actress, Gone Girl and Young Guns)
Anne Beatts (Original Writer, Saturday Night Live and Creator of Square Pegs sitcom)
Ned Beatty (Veteran Actor, Deliverance and Network)
Jean-Paul Belmondo (Beloved French Actor)
Walter Bernstein (Blacklisted Writer and Oscar Nominee, The Front) [He was 101]
Biz Markie (Rapper)
Frank Bonner (Actor, WKRP in Cincinnati and Saved By the Bell)
Connie Bradley (Longtime ASCAP Nashville Head)
Harry Bring (TV Producer, Criminal Minds and The X-Files)
Eli Broad (Billionaire Philanthropist)
Allan Burns (Emmy-Winning Screenwriter and Co-Creator of The Mary Tyler Moore Show)

Jessica Campbell (Actress, Freak and Geeks and box office film Election)
Linda Carlson (Actress, Murder One and TV adaptation of Clueless)
Sonny Chiba (Martial Arts Legend and Japanese Actor, Kill Bill)
Roy Christopher (Famed Production Designer)
Beverly Cleary (Best-Selling Author, ‘Ramona the Pest’ and ‘Henry and Beezus’) [She was 104]
Michael Collins (Apollo 11 Astronaut)
Michael Constantine (Actor, My Big Fat Greek Wedding)
Alex Cord (Actor, Airwolf)
Chick Corea (Jazz Fusion Pioneer)
Johnny Crawford (Former Child Star, The Rifleman and Original Mousketeer)
Dave Creek (Lead Character Designer, Bob’s Burgers)
Irv Cross (Former NFL Player and first black TV Analyst)
J.D. Crowe (Master Banjo Player and Grammy Winner)

Arlene Dahl (Veteran Actress, One Life to Live; Cosmetics Executive)
Stuart Damon (Veteran Soap Actor, General Hospital)
Sarah Dash (Labelle Co-Founder and “Lady Marmalade” Singer)
Nick Davatzes (Cable Pioneer who launched A&E Network and the History Channel)
Martha De Laurentiis (Film and TV Producer, Hannibal and Red Dragon and Wife of late Dino De Laurentiis)
David H. DePatie (Cartoon Co-Creator and Producer, The Pink Panther)
Dustin Diamond (Actor, Saved by the Bell) [He was 44]
Eric Jerome Dickey (Best-Selling Author) [He was 59]
Joan Didion (Beloved Author and Screenwriter)
DMX (Rapper)
Bob Dole (Former Senate Majority Leader and Republican Presidential Candidate) [He was 98]
Young Dolph (Rapper, killed in Memphis shooting) [He was only 36]
Richard Donner (Director, Superman, The Goonies and Lethal Weapon)
Anne Douglas (Producer and Widow of Kirk Douglas) [She was 102]
Jerry Douglas (Veteran Actor, The Young and the Restless)
Suzzanne Douglas (Actress, The Parent ‘Hood)
Robert Downey Sr. (Director and father of Robert Downey, Jr.)
Olympia Dukakis (Oscar-Winning Actress, Moonstruck and Steel Magnolias)
Dianne Durham (First African American Senior National Gymnastic Champion) [She was 52]

Graeme Edge (Drummer and Co-Founder of the Moody Blues)
Mark Elliott (Longtime Voice of Disney Trailers)
Don Everly (Half of the Everly Brothers, best known for song “Wake Up Little Susie”)

Frances “Sissy” Farenthold (Liberal force in Texas politics, championed racial parity and women’s rights)
Siegfried Fischbacher (Magician, Siegfried & Roy)
Larry Flynt (Founder and Publisher, Hustler Magazine)
Jahmil French (Actor, Degrassi: The Next Generation) [He was 29]
Chuck Fries (Prolific TV and FIlm Producer) [He was 92]
Mira Furlan (Actress, Babylon 5 and Lost)

Willie Garson (Actor, White Collar and Sex in the City)
Richard Gilliland (Prolific Actor, Designing Women, Thirtysomething, Operation Petticoat and Heartland)
Arlene Golonka (Veteran Character Actress, Mayberry R.F.D.)
Pedro Gomez (Veteran ESPN Sports Center Reporter) [He was 58]
Saginaw Grant (Actor, Breaking Bad and The Lone Ranger)
Alison Greenspan (TV Series Producer, For Life and 2014 movie If I Stay) [She was 48]
Nanci Griffith (Grammy-winning singer-songwriter)
Charles Grodin (Veteran Actor, Midnight Run, Beethoven and Heaven Can Wait)

Tom T. Hall (Country Music Hall of Fame legend)
James Hampton (Writer and Director, F Troop, Longest Yard and Teen Wolf with Michael J. Fox)
Sarah Harding (Actress and Singer from British girl group Girls Aloud) [She was only 39]
Al Harrington (Actor, Hawaii Five-0, original series and reboot)
Billie Hayes (Actress, H.R. Pufnstuf) [She was 96]
Monte Hellman (Director, Two-Lane Blacktop, The Shooting and Road to Nowhere) [He was 91]
Tony Hendra (British Satirist and Comic)
Gloria Henry (Actress, Dennis the Menace)
Dusty Hill (Bassist, legendary band ZZ Top)
Patricia Hitchcock (Daughter of legendary director Alfred Hitchcock) [She was 93]
Hal Holbrook (Veteran Actor, Emmy- and Tony-Winner, All the President’s Men and Lincoln)
bell hooks (Renowned Author and Social Activist
Sally Ann Howes (Actress, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) [She was 91]
Joye Hummel (First woman to write Wonder Woman) [She was 97]
Halyna Hutchins (Cinematopher who was killed on set of western movie Rust)

Ravil Isyanov (Actor, The Americans and NCIS: Los Angeles)

Anthony “A.J.” Johnson (Actor, Friday and House Party)
Geoffrey Johnson (Tony Award winning casting director of Cats and Phantom of the Opera)
Vernon Jordan (American business executive and Civil Rights Activist)
Joey Jordison (Co-founder and original drummer of the band Slipknot) [He was 46]

Irma Kalish (Prolific and Pioneering TV Comedy Writer, Maude and Gilligan’s Island)
Larry King (Legendary Interviewer and Talk Show Host)
Tommy Kirk (Disney Actor, Old Yeller and Swiss Family Robinson)
Julie E. “Tawny” Kitaen (80’s Music Video Vixen)
Yaphet Kotto (Bond Villain and Actor, Alien and Live and Let Die)

Art LaFleur (Actor, Sandlot, Field of Dreams and Santa Clause)
John Langley (Creator, Cops, the long-running TV reality series)
Tommy Lasorda (Famed Baseball Coach and Manager, Los Angeles Dodgers) [He was 93]
Cloris Leachman (Veteran TV Actress)
Gregg Leakes (Real Housewives of Atlanta star and Husband to NeNe Leakes)
G. Gordon Liddy (Convicted Watergate Operative and Talk Show Host) [He was 90]
Rush Limbaugh (Right-Wing Radio Host)
Joanne Linville (Actress, Star Trek) [She was 93]
Ernie Lively (Actor, Father of actress Blake Lively)
Norman Lloyd (Actor, Producer and Director, Hitchcock flick Saboteur and TV’s St. Elsewhere) [He was 106]
Sean Lock (British Comedian)
William Lucking (Veteran Actor, Sons of Anarchy)

Norm Macdonald (Saturday Night Live Performer and Comedian)
Ray MacDonnell (Veteran Actor, All My Children)
John Madden (NFL Hall of Fame Coach and Broadcaster)
Bernie Madoff (Ponzi Scheme Mastermind)
Harriet Margulies (Producer’s Assistant, JAG and Audience Liaison NCIS)
Carlos Marin (Member of the British opera-pop crossover group Il Divo)
Gerry Marsden (Frontman of Gerry and the Pacemakers)
Jackie Mason (Veteran Comedian) [He was 93]
Gavin MacLeod (Actor, Love Boat) [He was 90]
Liz McCann (Pioneer Broadway Producer, 9-Time Tony Winner)
Helen McCrory (Actress, Harry Potter franchise and Peaky Blinders, wife of actor Damian Lewis) [She was 52]
Les McKeown (Singer, Bay City Rollers)
Larry McMurtry (Oscar Winner, Brokeback Mountain and Author ‘Lonesome Dove’)
Eddie Mekka (Actor, Laverne & Shirley)
Roger Michell (Director, Notting Hill, Venus and My Cousin Rachel)
Matthew Mindler (Child Actor, Our Idiot Brother) [He was only 19]
Walter Mondale (Former Vice President)
Paul Mooney (Comedian, Actor and Writer for Richard Pryor)
Jovita Moore (Atlanta News Anchor) [She was only 53]
Captain Sir Tom Moore (British World War II Veteran who raised millions of pounds to battle COVID) [He was 100]
Trevor Moore (Comedian and Co-Founder of The Whitest Kids U Know Sketch Comedy Group)
Mark Anthony Morales (aka Prince Markie Dee, Rap Group The Fat Boys) [He was 52]
Roger Mudd (Veteran CBS and NBC News Correspondent) [He was 93]
Dr. Barbara Murphy (Kidney Transplant Expert)

Michael Nader (Actor, Dynasty and All My Children)
Mike Nesmith (Singer-Songwriter, The Monkees and Multimedia Entrepreneur)

Johnny Pacheco (Co-Founder, Salsa Label Fania Records)
Peter Palmer (Star of Li’l Abner on Broadway and the big screen)
Christopher Pennock (Actor, General Hospital and Dark Shadows)
Lee “Scratch” Perry (Jamaican Reggae Legend, Producer and Performer)
Prince Philip (Husband of Queen Elizabeth II) [He was 99, two months short of 100]
Jay Pickett (Veteran soap opera actor)
Ronald Pickup (Actor, The Crown and Best Exotic Marigold Hotel)
Marc Pilcher (Bridgerton Makeup Designer and Emmy Winner)
Christopher Plummer (Veteran Shakespearean Actor, The Sound of Music, Departure and Beginners)
Ron Popeil (Infomercial Icon)
Markie Post (Actress, Night Court)
Anthony Powell (Three-Time Oscar-Winning Costume Designer)
Colin Powell (Former U.S. Secretary of State)
Jane Powell (Legendary Actress, Royal Wedding and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers)
Eddie Mekka (Actor, Laverne & Shirley)
Marion Ramsey (Broadway Actress, Film Actress, Police Academy)
John Reilly (Veteran Actor, General Hospital)
Anne Rice (Writer, ‘Interview with the Vampire’)
Jerry Remy (Former Baseball player and long-time Boston Red Sox Broadcaster)
Sonny Rhodes (Singer-Guitarist, Performed Theme Song to TV Show Firefly)
Peter Mark Richman (Stage Actor and TV Actor, Beverly Hills 90210 and Three’s Company)
Sam Riddle (Producer, Star Search and Original LA ‘Boss Radio’ DJ)
Paul Ritter (British Actor, Chernobyl and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince) [He was 54]
Tanya Roberts (Actress, Charlie’s Angels and That ‘70s Show)
Charles Robinson (Actor, The Night Court)
Mick Rock (Legendary Photographer of David Bowie, Queen and Lou Reed)
Joanne Rogers (Widow of Fred Rogers aka Mister Rogers)
Max Rosenthal (Character Actor and father of series creator Phil Rosenthal) [He was 95]
Donald Rumsfeld (Former U.S. Secretary of Defense)
Richard Rush (Director, The Stunt Man) [He was 92]

Antonio Sabato Sr. (Actor, Grand Prix and Escape From the Bronx and father of actor Antonio Sabato Jr.)
Mort Sahl (Standup Comic) [He was 94]
Jay Sandrich (Emmy-winning Director, The Cosby Show and The Mary Tyler Moore Show)
Herbert Schlosser (NBC Executive)
Al Schmitt (Engineer-Mixer, Winner of 20 Grammys) [He was 91]
Peter Scolari (Actor, Newhart and Bosom Buddies)
Willard Scott (Legendary Today Show Weatherman)
Sabine Schmitz (Top Gear Presenter and Famed Racing Driver) [She was 51]
Fred Segal (Icon of Los Angeles Fashion and Retail)
George Segal (Veteran Actor, The Goldsbergs, Oscar Nominee, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf)
Sidharth Shukla (Beloved Bollywood Actor) [He was only 40]
Gregory Sierra (Actor, Barney Miller and Sanford and Son)
Felix Silla (Actor, Cousin Itt on The Addams Family and Twiki on Buck Rogers)
Cliff Simon (Actor, Stargate: SG-1)
Joseph Siravo (Actor, The Sopranos, Jersey Boys and American Crime Story)
Sylvain Sylvain (Co-Founder and Rhythm Guitarist, New York Dolls)
Shock G. (Bay Area rapper-producer who fueled “The Humpty Dance” by Digital Underground)
William Smith (Action Star/Actor, Any Which Way You Can and Rich Man, Poor Man)
Stephen Sondheim (Legendary Composer and Dominant Voice in American Musical Theatre)
Phil Spector (Legendary Studio Producer)
Michael Stanley (Cleveland Rock Hero, Michael Stanley Band)
Jim Steinman (Composer, Lyricist and Record Producer – worked with Meat Loaf, Celine Dion and Bonnie Tyler)
Dean Stockwell (Veteran Actor, Quantum Leap and countless movie since he was a child)
Una Stubbs (Veteran Actress, Sherlock)

Jamie Tarses (TV Executive, First Woman to Lead NBC Programming Division) [She was 56]
B.J. Thomas (Singer and Grammy-Winner)
Ruthie Tompson (Animation Pioneer and Disney Legend) [She was 111]
Houston Tumlin (Child Actor, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby) [He was 28]
James Michael Tyler (Actor, Gunther on Friends)
Michael Tylo (Veteran Soap Actor, Guiding Light, General Hospital, The Young and the Restless)
Cicely Tyson (Emmy- and Tony-Winner, Veteran Actress

Bobby Unser (American Auto Race, 3 time Indy winner)

Melvin Van Peebles (Legendary Filmmaker and father of actor-director Mario Van Peebles)

Alma Wahlberg (Mother of Mark and Donnnie Wahlberg)
Bunny Wailer (Founding Member, Bob Marley’s Wailers and Reggae Singer)
Jeff Wald (Manager to Helen Reddy, Sylvester Stallone and Donna Summer)
Jessica Walter (Actress, Arrested Development)
Charlie Watts (Legendary Drummer, The Rolling Stones)
Jim Weatherly (Songwriter, “Midnight Train to Georgia”)
Howard Weitzman (Celebrity Attorney to Michael Jackson, Marlon Brando and Sean Combs)
Sunni Welles (Actress and Author; and one of Bill Cosby’s sexual assault accusers)
Lina Wertmüller (first woman to be nominated for Best Director Oscar) [She was 93]
Diane Weyermann (Producer, Inconvenient Truth)
Betty White (Legendary Actress)
Clarence Williams III (Actor, The Mod Squad and Purple Rain)
Michael K. Williams (Actor, The Wire and Boardwalk Empire)
Mary Wilson ( (Co-Founder of the Supremes)
Jane Withers (Former Child Star and Josephine the Plumber) [She was 95]
Samuel E. Wright (Voice of Sebastian in The Little Mermaid)

John Sacret Young (TV Series Co-Creator, China Beach)
Wanda Young (Original member of the Marvelettes, and later the group’s lead singer)

NOTE: This list, in no way, covers all the industry talent who passed away this year. Again, condolences are extended to one and all.

Out of respect, please take a moment of silence.

TOMORROW: TV Ratings

Read Full Post »

The following industry personalities passed away in 2020 and heartfelt condolences are extended to their families, friends and fans.

But first let’s take a moment of silence for the over 280,000 Americans who have lost their lives due to the coronavirus as well as the more than 7,000 essential workers across the world who have lost their lives to the pandemic.

We also need to pay due respects to those who were lost in the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash that took the 42-year-old basketball legend’s life in addition to his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant and the following other victims:

Payton Chester, 13, and Sarah Chester, 45
Alyssa Altobelli, 14, Keri Altobelli, 46 and John Altobelli, 56
Christina Mauser, 38
Ara Zobayan (the pilot), 50

The celebrities we have lost this year (in alphabetical order):

Raymond Allen (Actor, “Sanford and Son”)

Orson Bean (Veteran Actor, “Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman)
David Bellisario (Producer, NCIS)
Royana Black (Actress, “Raising Miranda”)
Honor Blackman (Actress, Bond Girl Pussy Galore in “Goldfinger”)
Steve Bing (American Businessman, Philanthropist, Film Producer and Elizabeth Hurley’s Ex-Husband)
William Blinn (Screenwriter, “Brian’s Song” and “Roots”)
Mark Blum (Actor, “Desperately Seeking Susan”)
Chadwick Boseman (Actor, “Black Panther”)
Gregory Tyree Boyce (Actor, “Twilight” movie)
Wilford Brimley (Veteran Actor, “Our House” and “Cocoon”)
Lou Brock (Baseball Hall of Famer)
Timothy Brown (MASH Star and Former NFL Star)
Jeremy Bulloch (Original Boba Fett “Star Wars” Films)
Edd Byrnes (Actor, “77 Sunsent Strip”)

Herman Cain (Business Executive and Former Presidential Candidate)
John Callahan (Actor, “All My Children”)
Earl Cameron (One of the first major Black Actors in British Cinema)
Brent Carver (Broadway Star, “Kiss of the Spider Woman”)
Marge Champion (Golden Age TV Dancer, Model for Disney’s Snow White) [She was 101]
Lynn Cohen (Actress, “Hunger Games: Catching Fire”)
Daisy Coleman (Star, Netflix Documentary “Audrie & Daisy”)
Sean Connery (Veteran Actor, James Bond films, starting with “Dr. No” in 1962 through “Diamonds Are Forever” in 1971)
Robert Conrad (Actor, “The Wild Wild West” and “Black Sheep Squadron”)
Nick Cordero (Broadway Star)
Leanza Cornett (Miss America 1993)
Norm Crosby (Comedian known for his frequent malapropism)
Ben Cross (Actor, “Chariots of Fire”)

Abby Dalton (Actress, “Falcon Crest”)
Charlie Daniels (Violinist and Man Behind the Hit Song ‘Devil Went Down to Georgia’)
Mac Davis (Singer, Actor and TV Variety Show Host)
Spencer Davis (1960’s singer, ‘Gimme Some Lovin’)
Olivia de Havilland (Veteran Actress, “Gone With the Wind”)
Brian Dennehy (Veteran Actor, “First Blood” and “Cocoon”)
Chi Chi DeVayne (RuPaul’s Drag Race Alum)
Tommy DeVito (A Founding Member of The Four Seasons)
Dena Dietrich (Character Actress, Face of Mother Nature in Chiffon Margarine TV Commercial campaign)
Joe Diffie (Singer and Guitarist)
David Dinkins (Former Mayor of New York City)
Kevin Dobson (Actor, “Knots Landing”)
Kirk Douglas (Veteran Actor and Screen Legend)
Shirley Douglas (Mother of Actor Keifer Sutherland)
Hugh Downs (Legendary Broadcaster)
Ja’Net DuBois (Actress, “Good Times” and Singer/Co-Writer of The Jeffersons theme song)

Edward S. Feldman (Oscar-Nominated Producer, “Witness”)
Conchata Ferrell (Actress, “Two and a Half Men” and “Mystic Pizza”)
Caroline Flack (Former Love Island host)
Rhonda Fleming (Queen of Technicolor, “Spellbound” and “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court)
D.C. Fontana (Writer, “Star Trek”)
Wayne Fontana (Pop Singer from the band The Mindbenders)
Robert Forster (Actor, “Jackie Brown” and “Mulholland Drive”)

Phyllis George (American Businesswoman, Actress and Sportscaster)
Ruth Bader Ginsberg (Supreme Court Justice and Gender Equality Advocate)
Mary Pat Gleason (Character Actress and Writer, “Guiding Light”)
Leonard Goldberg (Producer, “Charlie’s Angels,” “T.J. Hooker,” “Fantasy Island “and “Blue Bloods”)
Terry Goodkind (Author, ‘The Sword of Truth’ – the book on which the series “Legend of the Seeker” was based)
Charles Gordon (Oscar-Nominated Producer, “Field of Dreams” and “Die Hard”)
Galyn Gorg (Actress, “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”)
Peter Green (Fleetwood Mac founder and guitarist)
Winston Groom (Author, ‘Forrest Gump’)
Cady Groves (Country Singer) [She was only 30]

Andre Harrell (Uptown Records Founder)
Charlie Hauck (Writer and Producer, “Maude” and “Frasier”)
Richard Herd (Veteran Actor, “The China Syndrome”)
Frederick “Toots” Hibbert (Jamaican Singer and Songwriter)
Ian Holm (Veteran Actor, “The Lord of the Rings” franchise)
Roy Horn (Legendary Illusionist)
Silvio Horta (Creator of Ugly Betty)
Jan Howard (Country Icon)
Brian Howe (Lead Singer of Bad Company)

Grant Imahara (American Electrical Engineer, Roboticist, TV Host and Actor)

Katherine Johnson (Legendary Mathematician “Hidden Figures”) [She was 101]
Rafer Johnson (Olympian, American Decathlete and Film Actor)
Jay Johnstone (Baseball Player on the Los Angeles Dodgers and TV Sports Announcer)
Terry Jones (Creator and Actor, “Monty Python”)

Hugh Keays-Byrne (Actor, Villain Toecutter in Mad Max and Villain Immortan Joe in Mad Max: Fury Road)
Lynn Kellogg-Simpers (Original Sheila in the 1968 Broadway production of “Hair”)
Tom Kennedy (Game Show Host, “Name That Tune”)
Benjamin Keough (Grandson of Elvis Presley, Son of Lisa Marie Presley)
Hal Ketchum (Country Music Artist)
Irrfan Khan (Actor, “Jurassic World”)
Stan Kirsch (Actor, “Highlander”)
Shirley Knight (Actress, “The Dark at the Top of the Stairs” and “Sweet Bird of Youth”)
Larry Kramer (Playwright and Activist)

David Lander (Actor, Squiggy from “Laverne & Shirley”)
Don Larsen (Former New York Yankees Baseball Player)
John le Carre (Renowned Spy Novelist)
James Charles Lehrer (Journalist, Novelist, Screenwriter and Playwright)
John Lewis (Congressman)
Lil Mario (Rapper)
James Lipton (TV Host, “Inside the Actors Studio”)
Tommy “Tiny” Lister (Former Professional Wrestler and actor, “Friday” and “The Fifth Element”)
Little Richard (Legendary Musician and Singer)
Sam Lloyd (Character Actor, “Scrubs”)
Michael Londsdale (French Actor, “Moonraker” and “The Day of the Jackal”)
Trini Lopez (Singer, Guitarist and Actor, “The Dirty Dozen”)
Rebecca Luker (Tony-nominated actress, “Mary Poppins,” “Show Boat” and “Music Man”)
Vera Lynn (British Singer, ‘We’ll Meet Again’)

Diego Maradona (Argentine Soccer Great-Manager and World Cup Winner)
Nikki McKibbin (Third Place, American Idol Season 1)
Terrence McNally (Theater Playwright)
Alan Merrill (Legendary Songwriter)
Clark Middleton (Actor, “The Blacklist” and “Twin Peaks”)
Ian Mitchell (Bay City Rollers, Bassist)
Ennio Morricone (Award-Winning Italian Composer)

Kellye Nakahara (Actress, “MASH)”
Johnny Nash (Singer, ‘I Can See Clearly Now’)
Fred “Curly” Neal (Former Harlem Globetrotter Member)
Claudette Nevins (Actress, “Sleeping With the Enemy” and “Melrose Place”)
Margaret Nolan (“Goldfinger” Model and Actress, “A Hard Day’s Night”)

David Olney (Folk singer)
K.T. Oslin (Grammy Award Winning Country Singer and Songwriter)
Ken Osmond (Actor, “Leave It to Beaver”)

Alan Parker (Director, “Fame” and “Midnight Express”)
Neil Peart (Rush, Drummer)
Regis Philbin (Legendary TV Talk Show Host)
Bonnie Pointer (From The Pointer Sisters)
Peggy Pope (Character Actress, “Bewitched” and “The Last Starfighter”)
John Prine (Folk Singer and Songwriter)
Mary Pratt (Trailblazing Baseball Player, Last Living Player on the First Roster for the Rockford Peaches)
Kelly Preston (Actress, “What A Girl Wants” and Wife of John Travolta)
Charley Pride (Country Music Superstar and First Black Member of the Country Music Hall of Fame)
David Prowse (Actor who played Darth Vader, “Star Wars”)

Sushant Singh Rajput (Bollywood star)
Elsa Raven (Veteran Character Actress, “Back to the Future” and “Titanic”)
Helen Reddy (Legendary Singer, Grammy Winner, Variety Show Lead and Emblem of Feminism)
Sumner Redstone (American Businessman)
Harold Reid (Bass Singer, Statler Brothers)
Carl Reiner (Legendary Comedian, Actor and Director)
Ann Reinking (Ton Winner and Star of Broadway’s “Chicago”)
Diana Rigg (Legendary Actress, “Avengers” and “Game of Thrones”)
Naya Rivera (Actress-Singer, “Glee”)
David Roback (Legendary Guitarist and Co-Founder of Band Mazzy Star)
Cliff Robinson (Former NBA Player)
Kenny Rogers (Famed Country Singer and Actor)
Larry Rosen (Producer, “The Partridge Family”)
Joe Ruby (Co-Creator, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You”)

Reni Santoni (Actor, “Dirty Harry” and “Seinfeld”)
John Saxon (Veteran Actor, “Enter the Dragon” and “The Appaloosa”)
Gale Sayers (Former Football Player, Chicago Bears)
Adam Schlesinger (Fountains of Wayne Member and Songwriter)
David Schramm (Actor, “Wings”)
Esther Scott (Veteran Actress, “Boyz in the Hood” and Voice Actor)
Joel Schumacher (Director, “Batman Forever”)
Ashina Sei (Asian Actress, “Silk”) [She was only 36]
John Sessions (Comedian and Actor, “Outlander”)
Lynn Shelton (Director, “Humpday” and “Your Sister’s Sister”)
Fred Silverman (Executive NBC and CBS)
Jean Kennedy Smith (Former U.S. Ambassador)
Herb Solow (Producer who sold “Star Trek” to NBC)
Phyllis Somerville (Veteran Actress, “Little Children” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”)
Ken Spears (Co-Creator, “Scooby-Doo”)
Caroll Edwin Spinney (Cartoonist, Author, Speaker and Puppeteer, Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on “Sesame Street”)
Jerry Stiller (Legendary Comedian and Actor)

Yuko Takeuchi (Japanese Actress, “The Ring”) [She was 40]
Kurt Thomas (Olympic Gymnast)
Danny Tidwell (Dancer, “So You Think You Can Dance”)
Alex Trebek (Jeopardy Game Show Host)

Eddie Van Halen (Legendary Guitarist, Rock Group Van Halen)
Max von Sydow (Veteran Actor, “The Seventh Seal,” and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”)

Lyle Waggoner (Actor, “Wonder Woman”)
Jerry Jeff Walker (Singer and Songwriter, ‘Mr. Bojangels’)
Nikita Pearl Waligwa (star of Disney’s “Queen of Katwe”) [She was only 15]
Dawn Wells (Actress, “Gilligan’s Island”)
Leslie West (Singer and Guitarist from rock group Mountain known for ‘Mississippi Queen’)
Stuart Whitman (Veteran Actor, “The Longest Day” and “The Day the Earth Stood Still”)
Fred Willard (Legendary Comedian and Actor)
Logan Williams (Canadian Actor) [He was only 16]
Bruce Williamson (Singer, The Temptations)
Mel Winkler (Actor, Voice Actor, Stage Performer and Dancer)
Bill Withers (Singer-Songwriter and Musician, ‘Ain’t No Sunshine’)
Betty Wright (Grammy-Winning Soul Singer)
Elizabeth Wurtzel (Author, ‘Prozac Nation’)

Chuck Yeager (First Pilot to Break the Sound Barrier)

NOTE: This list, in no way, covers all the industry talent who passed away this year. Again, condolences are extended to one and all.

Out of respect, please take a moment of silence.

TOMORROW: TV Ratings

Read Full Post »

The following industry personalities (listed in alphabetical order) passed away in 2019 and heartfelt condolences are extended to their families, friends and fans:

Julie Adams (Actress, Creature From the Black Lagoon)
Danny Aiello (Actor, Do the Right Thing and Moonstruck)
Fatima Ali (Renowned Chef)
Jed Allan (Actor, Beverly Hills 90210)
Carmen Argenziano (Actor, Stargate franchise)
Rene Auberjonois (Actor, Benson and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)
Claudine Auger (Actress, Domino in James Bond movie Thunderball)

Ginger Baker (Drummer for Rock Trio Cream)
Kaye Ballard (Legendary Actress, Singer and Comedian)
Kevin Barnett (Comedian)
Frank Biondi, Jr. (Former Viacom and Universal Studios Head)
Cameron Boyce (Actor, Descendants franchise) [He was only 20]
Chuy Bravo (Talk Show Sidekick, Chelsea Lately)

Carmine Caridi (Actor, Murder She Wrote and Starsky and Hutch)
Diahann Carroll (Actress, Singer and Tony Award winner)
Seymour Cassel (Veteran Character Actor)
Carol Channing (Tony-winning Broadway Star)
Beth Chapman (Bounty Hunter)
Martin Charnin (Creator and Director, Annie the Broadway Musical)
John Clarke (Actor, Days of Our Lives)
Larry Cohen (Director and Screenwriter)
Jessi Combs (Experimental Car Driver and TV Host)
Earl Thomas Conley (Country Singer)
Tim Conway (Legendary Comedian and Actor)
Chris Cotton (Comedian)
Elijah Cummings (U.S. Representative)

Dick Dale (King of the Surf Guitar)
Paul Darrow (Actor, Blake’s 7)
Doris Day (Lengedary Actress and Singer)
Gabriel Diniz (Latin Pop Star)
Stanley Donen (Legendary Hollywood Director)
Dr. John (New Orleans Music Legend)
Daryl Dragon (of Captain and Tennille, Former Husband of Toni Tennille)

Aron Eisenberg (Actor, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)
Georgia Engel (Comedianne and Actress, The Mary Tyler Moore Show)
Robert Evans (Legendary Movie Producer)

Albert Finney (British Actor)
Peter Fonda (Actor, Easy Rider)
David Foster (Producer, The Getaway and The Thing)
Robert Forster (Actor)
Marie Fredriksson (Singer, Pop Duo Roxette)

Godfrey Gao (Taiwanese-Canadian Model and Actor, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones) [He was only 35]
Rob Garrison (Actor, Tommy in The Karate Kid)
Leonard Goldberg (Veteran Film and TV Executive, Blue Bloods and Charlie’s Angels Creator)
Edith Gonzalez (Telenovela Star)
Laurel Griggs (Broadway Actress, ONCE, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) [She was only 13]
Grumpy Cat (Internet Sensation)

Sid Haig (Horror Genre Actor)
Goo Hara (K-Pop Star) [She was only 28]
Valerie Harper (Actress, Rhoda)
Kylie Rae Harris (Country Singer)
Rutger Hauer (Actor, Blade Runner)
David Hedison (Actor, Another World)
Rachel Held Evans (Popular Christian Author)
Katherine Helmond (Actress, Who’s the Boss)
Nipsey Hussle (Rapper)

James Ingram (Grammy-winning R&B Singer)

Larry “Flash” Jenkins (Actor, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off)
Arte Johnson (Actor-Comedian, Laugh-In)
Eddie Jones (Actor, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman)
Freddie Jones (British Actor)
Juice Wrld (Rapper) [He was only 21]

Ken Kercheval (Actor, Dallas)
Gabe Khouth (Actor, Sneezy on Once Upon a Time)
Bob Kingsley (National Radio Hall of Fame Broadcaster)
Judith Krantz (International Best-Selling Author)

Karl Lagerfeld (Legendary Fashion Designer)
Michel Legrand (Oscar-Winning Composer)
Ron Leibman (Actor, Norma Rae and Angels in America)
Peter Lindberg (Famed Fashion Photographer)
Peggy Lipton (Former Model and Actress, Mod Squad)
Carol Lynley (Actress, The Poseidon Adventure)

Bill Macy (Actor, Maude)
Peter Mayhew (Actor, Chewbacca in Star Wars franchise)
Philip McKeon (Actor, Alice and real-life brother of Nancy McKeon)
Dick Miller (Actor, Terminator and Gremlins)
Eddie Money (Singer)
Shelley Morrison (Actress, Will and Grace)
Toni Morrision (Nobel Prize winning Author)
Harry Morton (Founder of L.A.’s Pink Taco) [He was only 38 years old]

Art Neville (Singer-Songwriter, The Neville Brothers)
Denise Nickerson (Actress, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory)
Stephanie Niznik (Actress, Everwood)

Beverley Owen (Actress, The Munsters)

Karen Pendleton (Original Mouseketeer)
Ross Perot (Businessman and Former Politician)
Luke Perry (Actor, Beverly Hills 90210 and Riverdale)
Joe Pilato (Actor, The Day of the Dead)
Michael J. Pollard (Actor, Oscar-Nominated Bonnie and Clyde)
Linda Porter (Actress-Scene Stealer, Superstore)
Andre Previn (Oscar-winning Composer and Conductor)
Harold Prince (Broadway Producer and Director)

Leon Redbone (Singer-Songwriter and Actor)
Cokie Roberts (Pioneer Journalist and Political Commentator)
Carl Ruiz (Food Network Star and Chef)

Alvin Sargent (Oscar-winning Screenwriter)
Lisa Sheridan (Actress, Invasion and The 4400)
Stefanie Sherk (Canadian Model, Actress and wife of actor Demian Bichir)
Tyler Skaggs (Los Angeles Angels Pitcher)
Kim Shattuck (Lead Singer and Bassist for The Muffs)
John Singleton (Oscar-nominated Director)
Caroll Spinney (Puppeteer, Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, Sesame Street)
Kristoff St. John (Actor, The Young and the Restless)
Joan Stanley (Actress, The Ghost and Mr. Chicken)
Sulli (Korean Pop Star) [She was only 25]

Brian Tarantina (Actor, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel)
Rip Taylor (“Zany” Comedian)
Russi Taylor (Voice of Minnie Mouse)
Peter Tork (Singer-Songwriter, Member of The Monkees)
Rip Torn (Actor, The Larry Sanders Show and Men in Black)

Gloria Vanderbilt (Heiress, Socialite, Fashion Icon and Mother of Anderson Cooper)
Jan-Michael Vincent (Actor, Airwolf)

John Wesley (Actor, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
Suzanne Whang (House Hunters Host)
Richard Williams (Animator, Who Framed Roger Rabbit)
Allee Willis (Songwriter, “September” and “I’ll Be There for You”)
William Wintersole (Actor, The Young and the Restless)
John Witherspoon (Actor, Friday franchise)
Gene Wolfe (Sci-Fi Author)
Max Wright (Actor, ALF)

Franco Zeffirelli (Italian Film Director)

NOTE: This list, in no way, covers all the industry talent who passed away this year. Again, condolences are extended to one and all.

Out of respect, please take a moment of silence.

TOMORROW: Ratings

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The following industry personalities (listed in alphabetical order) passed away in 2017 and heartfelt condolences are extended to their families, friends and fans:

Roger Ailes (Founder, FOX News)
Lola Albright (Singer and Actress, TV’s “Peter Gunn” and Film classic “Champion”)
Gregg Allman (Pioneer of Southern Rock Allman Brothers Band)
Richard Anderson (Actor, “The Six Million Dollar Man” and “The Bionic Woman”)
Gary Austin (Founder of “The Groundlings”)
John G. Avildsen (Director, “Rocky” and “Karate Kid”)

Peter Baldwin (Actor turned Prolific TV Director)
Chuck Barris (Host, “Gong Show”)
Walter Becker (Guitarist, Bassist and Co-Writer for band Steely Dan)
Buzz Belmondo (Comedian-Actor, “Out of This World” and “Baywatch”)
Chester Bennington (Lead Singer of Linkin Park)
Shelley Berman (Actor, “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and Stand-Up Comedian)
Chuck Berry (Rock ‘n’ Roll Pioneer)
Joseph Bologna (Playwright, Director and Actor, “My Favorite Year”)
Powers Boothe (Actor, “Sin City,” “Nashville” and “Deadwood”)
Jimmy Breslin (Pulitzer Prize-Winning New York Columnist)
Brad Bufanda (Actor, “Veronica Mars” – played Felix Toombs) [He was only 34]

Glen Campbell (Country Music Legend)
Bernie Casey (Actor, “Revenge of the Nerds” and “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka”)
David Cassidy (Singer-Actor, “The Partridge Family”)
Darlene Cates (Actress, Housebound Mom in box office film “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape” film)
Alan Colmes (Fox News Commentator)
Barbara Cook (Broadway Actress, “Cabaret”)
Chris Cornell (Singer, Soundgarden and Audislave) [He was only 52]

Jonathan Demme (Director, “Silence of the Lambs”)
Fats Domino (R&B Singer and Rock Pioneer)
Roy Dotrice (Actor, “Beauty and the Beast”)
Gord Downie (Frontman of Tragically Hip, Canadian band)
John F. Dunsworth (Actor, “Haven”)

Nelsan Ellis (Actor, “True Blood”) [He was only 39]
Dick Enberg (Legendary Sportscaster)

Gloria Fallon (Mother of Comedian and Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon)
Miguel Ferrer (Actor, “NCIS: Los Angeles”)
Neil Fingleton (British Actor, “Game of Thrones”) [He was only 36]
June Foray (the voice of Rocky the Flying Squirrel and Natasha Fatale, “The Bullwinkle Show”)
Bruce Forsyth (Legendary British Entertainer and TV Personality, “The Generation Game”)
Warren Frost (Veteran Actor, “Twin Peaks” and “Seinfeld”)
Stephen Furst (Actor, “Animal House,” “Babylon 5” and “St. Elsewhere”)

Dick Gautier (Actor, Hymie the Robot on 1960’s classic “Get Smart”)
Troy Gentry (Half of the Popular Country Duo Montgomery Gentry)
Cuba Gooding, Sr. (Soul Singer and Father of Cuba Gooding, Jr.)
Robert Guillaume (Actor, “Benson”)
Sue Grafton (Best-Selling Author)
Dick Gregory (Pioneering Stand-Up Comedian and Civil Rights Activist)

Barbara Hale (Veteran Actress, “Perry Mason”)
Monty Hall (Host, “Let’s Make a Deal”)
Roy Halladay (American professional baseball player)
Ty Hardin (Actor, “Cheyenne” and “Bronco”)
Robert Hardy (British Actor, Cornelius Fudge [Minister of Magic] in “Harry Potter” franchise)
Connie Hawkins (Harlem Globetrotters Player)
Glenne Headly (Actress, “Lonesome Dove” and “Dick Tracey”)
John Heard (Actor, “Home Alone”)
Hugh Hefner (Founder, Playboy Magazine)
Blake Heron (Actor, “Tom and Huck” and “Shiloh”) [He was only 35]
Mike Hodge (Actor, “Law & Order” and SAG-AFTRA New York Local President)
John Hillerman (Actor, “Magnum, P.I.”)
Tobe Hooper (Director, “Texas Chain Saw Massacre”)
Lena Horne (Legendary Singer and Actress)
Rance Howard (Veteran Actor and Father of Actor-Director Ron Howard and Actor Clint Howard)
John Hurt (Veteran Actor, “Alien,” “The Elephant Man” and “Doctor Who”)
Earle Hyman (Veteran Actor, “The Cosby Show”)

Al Jarreau (Grammy-Winning Jazz Singer)

Jake LaMotta (Real-Life “Raging Bull” Boxer)
Mark LaMura (Actor, “All My Children”)
Martin Landau (Legendary Actor, “Mission: Impossible” and “Ed Wood”)
Chuck Law (Actor, “Goodfellas”)
Joan Lee (Wife of Legendary Comic Book Creator Stan Lee)
Jerry Lewis (Comedy Legend)

Ralphie May (Comedian)
Rose Marie (Legendary Actress)
Julio Oscar Mechoso (Veteran actor, “The Legend of Zorro”)
Dorothy Mengering (David Letterman’s Mom)
Heather Menzies-Urich (Actress, “Sound of Music”)
Dina Merrill (Actress and Philanthropist)
Roger Moore (Actor, “James Bond” Films)
Erin Moran (Actress, “Happy Days”)
Jeanne Moreau (French Actress, “Jules and Jim” and “Diary of a Chambermaid” and the U.S film “Ever After”)
Charlie Murphy (Actor and Comedian and Eddie Murphy’s Brother)

Jim Nabors (Singer-Actor, “Gomer Pyle”)
Michael Nygyist (Swedish Actor, the original “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo”)

Paul O’Neill (Founder, Trans-Siberian Orchestra)
Don Ohlmeyer (NBC Producer and Executive)
Robert Osborne (TCM Host and Film Historian)

Tommy Page (90’s Singer and Music Executive [He was only 46]
Michael Parks (Character Actor, “Kill Bill”)
Bill Paxton (Actor, “Titanic” and TV adaptation “Training Day”)
Tom Petty (Rock n Roll Legend)
Gabe Pressman (Legendary New York TV Reporter)

Della Reese (Singer – Actress, “Touched By An Angel”)
Don Rickles (Legendary Comedian)
George Romero (Legendary Director, “Night of the Living Dead”)

Sam Shepard (Playwright and Actor, “The Right Stuff”)
Keely Smith (Legendary Jazz and Pop Singer)
Liz Smith (Gossip Columnist)
Harry Dean Stanton (Veteran Actor, “Big Love” and “Twin Peaks”)
Ward Sylvester (Manager and TV Producer, “The Monkees”)

Jay Thomas (Actor, “Murphy Brown” and “Cheers”)
Mary Tyler Moore (Legendary Actress)
Frank Vincent (Actor, “The Sopranos”)

Robert James Waller (Author, “Bridges of Madison County”)
Judge Joseph Wapner (Judge, “People’s Court”)
Ann Wedgeworth (Actress, “Three’s Company”)
Adam West (Legendary Actor, “Batman”)
John Wetton (Bassist and Singer for Asia)

Francine York (Actress, Classic “Batman” Series, 1960’s)
Malcolm Young (Rock Band AC/DC, Co-Founder and Guitarist)

NOTE: This list, in no way, covers all the industry talent who passed away this year. Again, condolences are extended to one and all.

Out of respect, please take a moment of silence.

TOMORROW: Ratings

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carrie-and-debbie

To many out there, Carrie Fisher is, and always will be, Princess Leia Organa, member of the Rebellion and General in the Resistance. She’s Leia to me (and will be for all time), but that was not where I first met Carrie Fisher.

As a young girl, impressionable and naive, there were few bands that were “kid” appropriate for long drives across California, or through Illinois and the Midwest. But there was Paul Simon. It wasn’t just “Graceland” that defined the days in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but the entire collective works. I was introduced to “Heart and Bones” about “one and one-half wandering Jews” and being curious, I learned that Carrie Fisher was the one-half Jew of the song.

From that point on, I have one thing in common with her. It was curious to me to know that a woman who was the child of celebrities found herself intertwined with other celebrities. And she sounded conflicted and determined in the song, even if I knew the relationship didn’t last.

But she was there and she inspired a heartfelt song.

A few years later, as a teen When Harry Met Sally entered my lexicon. It was grown-up (“I’ll have what she’s having” and that scene probably was my first introduction to the concept of an orgasm) and it was not just Harry and Sally that I fell in love with, but with Jess and Marie.

Marie is a supportive, strong friend, who manages to get her friend the best (and gets the best for herself too). Sure, Marie is complicated – no qualms about dating a married man – but she is the support for Sally in good times and bad.

Even if When Harry Met Sally is about Harry and Sally, Marie (and Fisher) steal the show in quiet ways.

Here – fighting over a wagon wheel coffee table – Marie is herself and still funny. (Others have already pointed out how good Marie’s lines are.)

This is the Carrie Fisher I want to remember. Strong, funny, complicated.

debbie-and-carrie

PS: While Carrie Fisher is symbolic for Hollywood, so too is her mother, Debbie Reynolds. Reynolds dying just a day and a half after her daughter is heartbreaking and I wish the Reynolds, Fisher and Lourd families well.

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The following industry personalities (listed in alphabetical order) passed away in 2016 and heartfelt condolences are extended to their families, friends and fans:

Mohammad Ali (Boxing Legend)
René Angélil (Music Impresario and Céline Dion’s husband)

Kenny Baker (The Man Behind R2-D2 in “Star Wars”)
David Bowie (Legendary Singer)
Dave Brubeck (Legendary Jazz Musician)

Charmain Carr (Actress, “Liesl” from The Sound of Music)
Fidel Castro (Revolutionary leader and Cuba’s former President)
William Christopher (Actor, “Father Mulcahy” on M*A*S*H*)
Chyna (Former WWE Wrestler)
Leonard Cohen (Singer-Songwriter, Poet and Novelist)
Natalie Cole (Singer)
Pat Conroy (Author, “The Prince of Tides” and “The Great Santini”)

Gloria DeHaven (Actress from Golden Age of Hollywood)
Daniel Dion (Celine Dion’s brother)
Jerry Doyle (Actor, “Babylon 5”)
Larry Drake (Actor, “L.A. Law”)
Patty Duke (Legendary Actress)

Ronnie Claire Edwards (Actress, “The Waltons”)

Joey Feek (Country Singer from Duo Joey + Rory)
Fyvush Finkel (Actor, “Picket Fences” and “Boston Public”)
Carrie Fisher (Actress, Princess Leia in Star Wars franchise)
Tommy Ford (Actor “Martin” and “The Parkers”)
Bernard Fox (Veteran Actor)
Glenn Fry (Guitarist and Singer “The Eagles”)

Zsa Zsa Gabor (Veteran Actress)
Michael Galeota (Disney Star) [he was only 31]
George Gaynes (Character Actor, “Punky Brewster,” “Tootsie” and “Police Academy”)
David Gest (Music Producer)
Gary Glasberg (NCIS Showrunner)
Ron Glass (Actor, “Barney Miller” and “Firefly”)
John Glenn (Former Astronaut and U.S. Senator)
Christina Grimmie (“The Voice” Competitor) [She was only 22]
Reg Grundy (Australian Media Mogul)

Merle Haggard (Country Music Legend)
Dan Haggerty (Actor, “Grizzly Adams”)
Earl Hamner (Creator of “The Waltons”)
Curtis Hanson (Director, “L.A. Confidential”)
Pat Harrington (Actor, “One Day at a Time”)
Florence Henderson (Actress, “The Brady Bunch”)
Steven Hill (Actor, “Law & Order” and original TV series “Mission: Impossible”)
Arthur Hiller (Director, “Love Story)
Robert Horton (Actor, “Wagon Train”)
Ken Howard (SAG-AFTRA President and Former Actor “White Shadow”)
Gordie Howe (Hockey Legend)
Beth Howland (Actress, “Alice”)
David Huddleston (Veteran Character Actor, “The Big Lebowski”)

Barry Jenner (Actor, “Family Matters” and “Dallas”)

Paul Kantner (Founding Member of Jefferson Airplane)
George Kennedy (Veteran Actor, “Airport”)

Harper Lee (Author, “To Kill a Mockingbird”)
Ron Lester (Actor, “Popular” and “Varsity Blues”)

Jerry Maren (Actor, “Wizard of Oz”) [the last of the Munchkins]
David Margulies (Actor, “Ghostbusters”]
Garry Marshall (Legendary Director)
George Martin (Beatles Producer)
Joseph Mascolo (Veteran Actor, “Days of Our Lives”)
Michael Massee (Actor, “The Crow” and “24”)
John McLaughlin (Host, “The McLaughlin Group”)
George Michael (Singer)

Noel Neill (Actress, the original Lois Lane from the 1950’s “Superman” TV series)
Agnes Nixon (Creator of All My Children and One Life to Live)
Marni Nixon (“Ghost Singer” for Deborah Kerr in The King and I; Natalie Wood in West Side Story and Audrey Hepburn in Fair Lady)
James Noble (Actor, “Benson”)
Bill Nunn (Character Actor, “Do the Right Thing”)

Hugh O’Brian (Veteran Actor, “The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp”)

Arnold Palmer (Golf Legend)
Jon Polito (Character Actor “The Big Lebowski” and “Miller’s Crossing”)
Prince (Legendary Musician, Singer and Songwriter)

Nancy Reagan (Former First Lady)
Janet Reno (First Female U.S. Attorney General)
Debbie Reynolds (Legendary Actress)
Alan Rickman (Veteran Actor)
Jack Riley (Actor, “The Bob Newhart Show”)
Doris Roberts (Veteran Actress)

Morley Safer (Legendary “60 Minutes” Reporter)
Theresa Saldana (Actress, “Raging Bull”)
Joe Santos (Actor, “Rockford Files”)
John Saunders (ESPN Commentator)
Antonin Scalia (Supreme Court Justice)
William Schallert (Veteran Actor and Former SAG President)
Garry Shandling (Actor and Comedian)
Jim Simpson (Sportscaster)
Frank Sinatra, Jr.
David Smyrl (Actor, “Sesame Street”)

Alan Thicke (Actor, “Growing Pains”)
Grant Tinker (Former NBC Chairman-CEO and Founder of MTM Enterprises)

Vanity (aka Denise Katrina Matthews) (Lead singer of 80’s girl group Vanity 6)
Peter Vaughan (Veteran Actor, “Game of Thrones”)
Robert Vaughn (Actor, “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.”)
Abe Vigoda (Actor, “Barney Miller”)

Janet Waldo (Voice actress for Judy Jetson from “The Jetsons”)
Tom Whedon (Father of Joss Whedon)
Maurice White (Founder of Earth, Wind & Fire)
Elie Wiesel (Nobel Prize-Winning Author)
Gene Wilder (Veteran Actor, “Willy Wonka” and “Young Frankenstein”)
Van Williams (Actor, “The Green Hornet”)

Anton Yelchin (Actor, “Star Trek”) [He was only 27]
Alan Young (Veteran Actor, “Mister Ed” Star)

NOTE: This list, in no way, covers all the industry talent who passed away this year. Again, condolences are extended to one and all.

Out of respect, please take a moment of silence.

TOMORROW: Ratings

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arnold-palmer

Sunday evening, one of America’s great golf ambassadors, Arnold Palmer, passed away. He was the driving force for golf in America in the 1960s, shaping how and when Americans watched and cared for golf as a sport.

My life has been shaped by golf from a young age. My father is an avid golfer, albeit a golfer with a twenty handicap. But, he loves the sport and he wanted me to love it too. It was one of those constants: if there was a major tournament that weekend, there would be golf on one television.

Looking back now, golf wouldn’t have been the staple of my house without Arnold Palmer and his passion and skill. Between the late 1950s and early 1960s, Palmer won numerous tournaments with class and flare. He made golf exciting, he made it look like something that could appeal to everyman.

Two of golf’s other ambassadors, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods, were fans of Palmer’s style and grace of the game. They followed in Palmer’s footsteps, creating a game that mattered to hundreds of people.

His death, complications from heart problems, will leave a hole in the golf world. The world that lives and dies on birdie puts, the lip of the cup foiling the perfect shot on the green, and the long drive that lands in the middle of the green.

To say that Palmer had a lasting impact on the game of gold is an understatement. Television, sports television especially, thrive on excitement, great runs and dramatic finishes. Palmer provided all of those and more, returning to tournaments as recently as this summer, reminding all the fans that he still cared about the game and his role in it.

Sunday wasn’t just the day we lost a gold legend, but we also lost one great man.

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