12/16/97 Lillian Disney - Lillian Disney, the widow of Walt Disney, died 12/16/97 at the age of 98. She outlived Walt over thirty years! She was a very private lady and a great philanthropist. Her last claim to fame was fundraising for the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles (will be built in 2001). She will most likely be interred in the same grave as Walt and their adopted daughter, Sharon and Sharon's husband, Robert Brown at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale. No funeral arrangements were announce. (Check out the picture of Walt Disney's grave)
12/18/97 Chris Farley (comedian) - Comedian Chris Farley was found dead 12/18/97 in a Chicago condominium that belonged to a friend. As of 12/18/97, there was no details on cause of death. Funeral is set for Tuesday, 12/23/97 in Madison, Wisconsin (his hometown). Chris was 33.
12/20/97 Dawn Steel- Dawn Steel, former head of Paramount and Columbia Pictures has died of a brain tumor in Los Angeles. She was 51. Ms. Steel oversaw films like The Accused, Top Gun, Flashdance, When Harry Met Sally and Look Who's Talking. No funeral or burial arrangements were announced.
12/21/97 Roger Barkley- Los Angeles Radio Personality. Roger Barkley radio personality, died 12/21 of cancer. He was last heard on KABC radio on the Ken and Barkley show. Roger was a veteran radio personality from the 60's. No funeral arrangements were announced.
12/25/97 Denver Pyle - LOS ANGELES - Denver Pyle, the quinessential mountain man of film and TV, died of lung cancer on December 25th, 1997 at St. Joseph's Medical Center in Burbank at the age of 77. Pyle is best remebered as Uncle Jesse Duke from TVs "The Dukes of Hazzard", and as Mad Jack (as well as the narrator) from the 1970's series "The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams". Pyle was born in Bethune, Colorado on May 11th, 1920. Breaking into films in the late 40's, Pyle lent his versatile talents to a broad spectrum of films including, "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance", "The Great Race", and "Bonnie and Clyde". His television work included "The Life and Ledgend of Wyatt Earp" and "The Doris Day Show". His distinctive voice narrated the Dan Haggerty series "The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams", in which he also played the cranky, kooky mountain man Mad Jack. Mad Jack's antics were lent comic relief by his faithful-if-stubborn mule, Number Nine. Pyle's best remebered role was that of Uncle Jesse Duke, on TV's "The Dukes of Hazzard". Pyle's character dolled out sane, homespun advice to Bo and Luke Duke who, with cousin Dasiy, terrorized the back roads of Hazzard County in a souped-up Dodge. After the wacky series ended, Pyle continued making appearances as "Uncle Jesse" at various children's charities. He was honored with a star on Hollywood Blvd. just two-and-a-half weeks before his death. His last television appearance was in a "Dukes of Hazzard" reunion show in 1997. No memorial information was available as this goes to press. -From the Los Angeles Grim Society
12/31/97 Michael Kennedy - Son of Robert F. Kennedy and most recently in the news for alledgedly having sex with his children's baby sitter. Michael died on New Year's Eve in Aspen, CO when he crashed into a tree while skiing. He was buried 1/3/97 next to his brother David in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts.
1/6/98 Sonny Bono - Congressman Sony Bono (R-Palm Springs) died in a skiing accident in Lake Tahoe, CA. Congressman Bono crashed head first into a tree, dying instantly. He was 62. Sonny Bono became famous with his first wife, Cher, on the "Sonny and Cher Show" in the 70's. He later became a politician because he couldn't get a sign for his restaurant in Palm Springs. He was given the runaround by the Planning Commission. He finally told the clerk at the Planning Commission that he was going to get his sign by running for Mayor of Palm Springs and then firing the clerk. He ran for Mayor, won and then fired the clerk! Congressman Bono was buried at Desert Memorial Park, Cathedral City, CA.
1/22/98 Jack Lord - HONOLULU (Jan. 22) - Actor Jack Lord, who made Hawaii the setting for his popular ''Hawaii Five-O'' series, died at his Honolulu beachfront home. He was 77. His wife, Marie, said he died of congestive heart failure Thursday night. ''Jack loved acting and these islands, Throughout all our years here, he was blessed with kindness, affection and support from many fans and friends,'' she said. Before starring as Steve McGarrett in the detective drama, Lord played in movies from 1949 to 1968. While some were forgettable, they included ''The Court Martial of Billy Mitchell'', ''God's Little Acre,'' and the James Bond film, ''Dr. No.''In 1968, ''Hawaii Five-O'' made him a star. The show lasted 12 years and Lord starred in 284 episodes before he retired in 1980. Before he started acting, Lord's life read like a movie script. He was the son of a steamship executive and was a seaman in his teens. He went on to study art, run his own studio and exhibit his paintings at the Metropolitan and British museums and the Museum of Modern Art. Born John Joseph Patrick Ryan in Brooklyn, N.Y., Lord studied art at New York University, where he also played football. Later he studied acting in New York at the Actor's Studio alongside such future stars as Paul Newman and Marilyn Monroe. No funeral services are planned, Mrs. Lord said.
1/24/98 Jay Monahan (husband of Katie Couric) HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - John Paul (Jay) Monahan III, an attorney and legal analyst for NBC News and husband of ``Today'' show co-anchor Katie Couric, died Saturday Jan. 24 of colon cancer. He was 42. Born in Manhasset, Long Island, Monahan was a graduate of Washington and Lee University and Georgetown Law School. Following college, he practiced trial and appellate criminal and civil law for the Washington, D.C., firm of Williams and Connolly. He also logged a stint with the New York office of Hunton and Williams. During the past two years, Monahan had worked as a legal analyst for NBC News, covering high-profile trials for the network's news programs as well as for cable webs CNBC and MSNBC. He also was a Civil War enthusiast with an extensive collection of wartime memorabilia. Monahan is survived by his wife, and their two daughters, Elinor and Caroline Monahan. He is also survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John P. Monahan of Rehoboth Beach, Del., six brothers and sisters, and 11 nieces and nephews. Funeral arrangements are incomplete. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the National Cancer Institutes in Bethesda, Md., and Cancer Care Inc. of New York City.
2/6/98 Carl Wilson LOS ANGELES (AP) - Beach Boys founding member Carl Wilson, who was credited with keeping the band together in tough times, insisted on appearing in more than 100 performances last year even though he was dying of cancer. Wilson, who died Friday at 51, refused to let his illness keep him from completing the band's 36th annual tour last summer, the band's publicist, Alyson Dutch, said Sunday. `All the guys looked to Carl as a steady force,'' she said. ``He was also a peaceful force. Despite everything negative and the media stories that focused on dissension, when they got on stage or in the studio - the magic, the love, the brotherhood that existed between them never failed.'' Although he was forced to bow out of some shows for doctor's visits and some much-needed rest, he managed to complete 130 appearances. He sat down instead of standing for some performances and during a date in San Bernardino brought two of his doctors on stage for guest appearances. ``Carl was a deeply spiritual being who had an incredibly positive outlook on life,'' Ms. Dutch said. ``He had an amazing support system. His wife, Gina, was on tour with him, at his side, on every date this year. His sons said he was a perfect father who was there for their needs.'' Wilson, who was the seminal surf band's lead singer on many of their classic recordings, including ``Good Vibrations'' and ``God Only Knows,'' died in Los Angeles of complications of lung cancer. He also had brain cancer. Carl Dean Wilson was born in Hawthorne, a Los Angeles suburb about five miles from the Pacific Ocean. He learned to play guitar as a teen and in 1961 formed The Beach Boys along with his brothers, Brian and Dennis, cousin Mike Love and a friend, Alan Jardine. When the band was torn by family disagreements, substance abuse and Dennis' death, members turned to Carl. He was ``the glue that held the band together,'' Stan Love, Mike Love's brother, told the Los Angeles Times in a story published Sunday. Dennis, who died in a 1983 swimming accident, was credited with creating the band's surfing theme. Brian and Love wrote the lyrics, but it was Carl's guitar that took the lead and his sweet, melodic voice that anchored the vocals. Through the 1960s, The Beach Boys sold hundreds of thousands of records with hits such as ``Surfin' U.S.A.'' Two were million-sellers: ``I Get Around'' in 1964 and ``Good Vibrations'' in 1966. Creative differences between the group and their producers led to a slowdown after 1966. A comeback in the 1970s was stalled by the drug problems of Brian, who had written most of the band's top 20 singles. By the early 1980s, Carl tired of The Beach Boys' focus on nostalgia and lack of musical growth. The group's youngest member, he left in 1981 to work solo and released an album that year. But he later rejoined the group and had performed with them ever since, including at The Beach Boys' induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988. In addition to his brother and wife, Wilson is survived by his sons Jonah, 28, and Justyn, 26. Private burial services were planned later this week at an undisclosed location.
2/7/98 Falco Austrian Pop Star Falco has a deadly accident Santo Domingo (AP) -Austrian pop star Falco died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic. As the Dominican police indicated on Saturday, the jeep controlled by the 40 year-old collided on Friday with a bus. The accident occurred on a road between the most popular tourist places of the Republic, Puerto Plata and Sosua. Falco, which was the stage name of Johann Hoelzl, succumbed to the injuries in a hospital. The cause of accident was not immediately known. The bus driver was interviewed by the police; no charges were filed against him. In the 80's Falco had a series of hits, including "Der Komissar", "Rock Me Amadeus", "Jeanny" and "Vienna Calling". The music was some of the first to be an individual mix of rap, rock, and disco music, in which synthesizer played a basic role. On February 19, he would have been 41 years old."
2/20/98 Harry Carey - RANCHO MIRAGE, California, Feb 18 (Reuters) - Hall of FameChicago Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray, loved by fans for folksychatter including such classic phrases as ``Holy Cow'' and ``Itmight be, it could be, it is -- A HOME RUN!'' died Wednesday. Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage said Caray died at 4:10 p.m. PST (7:10 p.m. EST) of cardiac arrest and resultant brain damage. He died four days after collapsing at a Valentine's Day dinner with his wife. At the family's request, no further details were released by the hospital. Caray was believed to be 78 years old, although some record books listed him as a year younger. He had been broadcasting baseball for 53 years. Carey's last 16 years were devoted to a team that knew that while it might not win on the field, it would in the broadcasting booth, thanks to the gravelly-voiced announcer who offered his unabashed support. Before the Cubs, Caray spent 11 years as the voice of the Chicago White Sox and a year with the Oakland Athletics. He started his career in 1945 with the St. Louis Cardinals, where he worked until 1969. The St. Louis native became a familiar face in homes across the United States in the last 16 years as the voice of the Cubs on WGN-TV, a station widely syndicated on cable systems where the team's home games -- most of them played in the daytime -- were often the only sports offering on any given afternoon. At Wrigley Field he leaned out of the broadcast booth window at every seventh inning stretch, swinging a hand-held microphone back and forth to lead the crowd in singing ``Take Me Out to the Ballgame.'' First lady Hillary Clinton said she and President Clinton were deeply saddened by news of Caray's death. ``In Chicago, Harry was a larger-than-life symbol of baseball and like all Chicagoans I valued him not only for his contribution to the game, but also his love and zest for life,'' Mrs. Clinton said in a statement read by her spokeswoman. Caray recently helped the first lady celebrate her 50th birthday at a party in Chicago. ``Harry was one of a kind and nobody could sing 'Take me out to the ball game' like he could, and I hope he's doing a 7th inning rendition in heaven,'' she said, sending condolences to Caray's family. In Chicago, fans who gathered at Caray's restaurant on the city's Near North Side staged an impromptu wake, hoisting glasses as a bartender stood atop the bar and asked those gathered to sing ``Take Me Out to the Ball Game'' while a video of Caray singing the same song flickered on TV screens. Fans of Caray had visited his restaurant ever since he fell ill, signing a book offering their best wishes. Unlike many sports figures who lent their names to restaurants and bars, Caray routinely hung out at his place, signing autographs and greeting fans. ``There will never be another Harry Caray,'' former Cubs great Ron Santo told WGN-TV. On the sidewalk outside outside Wrigley Field fans dropped off flowers. WGN said a funeral service for Caray would be held at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago following a service in California. Caray, whose parents died when he was a child, had 10 children and 14 grandchildren. Caray is survived by his third wife, Dutchie, and 10 children. He collapsed Saturday night as he was having dinner with his wife and other family members. ``Harry Caray's genuine affection and appreciation for our game and its fans, spanning a period of over 50 years, is never likely to be equaled. He will be greatly missed by the Chicago Cubs organization. This is a sad day for the game of baseball,'' said Chicago Cubs President Andy MacPhail. Caray, who suffered a stroke in 1987, called Cubs games for 16 years, and previously worked for the Chicago White Sox, St. Louis Cardinals and Oakland Athletics. He was inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989. A statement from White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf read:``Harry Caray's death is a tragedy. He was a tremendous ambassador for the game of baseball and the city of Chicago. ``Millions of fans fell in love with the game by listening to his colorful, entertaining broadcasts of Cardinals, A's, White Sox and Cubs ballgames over the years,'' he said. Caray's son, Skip, is a broadcaster for the Atlanta Braves and his grandson, Chip, was scheduled to join his grandfather onthe Cubs' broadcast team this season.
2/25/98 Henny Youngman - HOLLYWOOD (Variety)—Henny Youngman, the undisputed king of the one-liners, whose quip "Take my wife—please," defines a comedic style, died Tuesday in New York. He was ninety-one. The comic died at Mount Sinai Hospital, where he had been since January 2, suffering from pneumonia. He had been working up until Christmas. Youngman, whose career was a series of peaks and valleys, ridicule and respect, frequently appeared with a violin (shades of Jack Benny). But his real trademark was his non-stop series of succinct, acerbic but surprisingly uncontroversial jokes. ("I was so ugly when I was born," he once said, "the doctor slapped my mother.") He was said to have four hours of material, some 1,600 jokes, floating around in his head. His approach was basic, his pace rapid-fire. At times, he was scorned for being out of touch and unsophisticated; at others he was revered for his impeccable timing and the simplicity of his humor. The venues varied from nightclubs to sales meetings, trade shows, fraternal roasts and even local bar mitzvahs. If he was busy, Youngman charged $5,000 a gig; if not, his fee would drop as low as $1,500. His need to work constantly is perhaps the result of a rather modest upbringing and a series of false starts. He was born to Russian immigrants in Liverpool, England, on January 12, 1906. His family soon moved to the U.S. and his father made him take violin lessons hoping he would become proficient enough to play professionally. Growing up in Brooklyn's Bay Ridge, Youngman studied printing at Brooklyn Vocational School and did several odd jobs before starting a band called the Syncopaters. The band played in and around Brooklyn and at Jewish resorts in the Catskills in the 1920s. By the early thirties, the wisecracking bandleader had struck out on his own with his comedic patter. Through his early writer Al Schwartz, Youngman's name began appearing in columns including Walter Winchell's, and he played dates at Manhattan's Yacht Club, but more frequently, out-of-the-way spots in New Jersey. Those were lean times, until singer Kate Smith hired him to be on her CBS radio show in 1936. After two years on the show, he waited in vain for movie offers; to survive, Youngman began to play anywhere and everywhere, averaging more than two hundred engagements a year. TV appearances refreshed his appeal in the fifties, but by the 1960s, with a new generation of post-Borscht Belt comedians in favor, Youngman's routine seemed tired. That changed in the late sixties, when Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In made a virtue of the one-liner and Youngman did it better than anyone else. He also appeared on Hee-Haw, Hollywood Squares, and The Tonight Show. Youngman was the first comic, and probably the most popular, to do Dial-a-Joke. His first month on the New York Telephone Co. spot in 1974 drew three million calls (Youngman earned only $3,500 for thirty minutes of material). He followed it up with another month in 1979. He made occasional TV dramatic appearances, such as 1961's The Golden Thirty on The U.S. Steel Hour. In films, he appeared in A Wave, a Wac and a Marine and Nashville Rebel and made cameo appearances in Won Ton Ton and Silent Movie in 1976, The Comeback Trail, The National Lampoon Goes to the Movies and briefly in 1990's GoodFellas. In 1980, he appeared in Medium Roasted Rare, a special on Showtime. Youngman also wrote several books including his autobiography, Take My Wife . . . Please! My Life and Laughs, in 1973. He also penned collections of jokes such as Don't Put My Name on This Book (1978), Insults for Everyone (1979), Five Hundred All Time Great One-Liners (1981), Henny Youngman's Giant Book of Jokes (1981), and Take My Jokes, Please (1983). Among his recordings are the albums Sol Hurok Does Not Present the Best and Worst of Henny Youngman, Take My Album, Please, and Greatest Jokes. Youngman and Sadie Cohen were married in 1928 and they had a son, Gary (a film editor), and daughter, Marilyn. Sadie died in 1987. Survivors also include two grandchildren. Services will be held at noon Friday at Riverside Chapel in New York.
3/10/98 Lloyd Bridges - LOS ANGELES (March 10) - Lloyd Bridges, whose half-century in acting ranged from the drama of ''High Noon'' to the daft ''Airplane!'' to the adventure of TV's ''Sea Hunt,'' has died, his agent said Tuesday. He was 85. Lee Stollman, a spokesman for the William Morris Talent Agency, said Bridges died in Los Angeles, but had no other information. The tall, craggy-faced, blond actor enjoyed amazing resiliency throughout his career, even surviving the film industry's political blacklist. He also spawned a new generation of actors. Sons Beau and Jeff, who started acting as youngsters on ''Sea Hunt,'' became stars in their own right. Bridges trained as a classical actor, but he soon learned to be more versatile. He played every kind of role in 25 B movies, starred on Broadway, worked in seven television series, even appeared in musical comedy. In his late years he was rediscovered as a farceur, often spoofing his own stalwart image. Lloyd Vernet Bridges Jr. was born Jan. 15, 1913, in San Leandro, near San Francisco. His father was a businessman whose enterprises included a movie theater. The boy became a movie addict and watched screenings of the same film over and over, observing technique. He applied what he learned in drama classes at Petaluma High School. Lloyd was also a star athlete, playing baseball, basketball and football at the University of California, Los Angeles. ''My dad wanted me to be a lawyer,'' he recalled in a 1968 interview. ''I majored in political science, but all I wanted to do was act.'' After graduation, Bridges was cast in a minor role in a modern-dress ''Taming of the Shrew'' that played the West Coast and went to New York. Bridges stayed on in New York and in 1937 made his Broadway debut with a small role in ''Othello,'' starring Walter Huston. ''I went to New York to do classical drama, but nobody else was doing Shakespeare,'' he said in 1978. ''I had to unlearn what I had been taught and muddy up my diction to get work.'' He joined with others in forming the Playroom Club, which performed contemporary dramas off-Broadway. During slack periods he appeared in stock and taught drama at a private school. Unable to make a dent on Broadway, he returned to California to pursue a movie career. Bridges was placed under contract at Columbia and made his debut in the 1941 ''The Lone Wolf Takes a Chance.'' A string of potboilers followed, and he even appeared in a Three Stooges short, ''They Stooge to Conga.'' His only major films were the fantasy ''Here Comes Mr. Jordan'' and ''Sahara,'' starring Humphrey Bogart. His career improved after he left Columbia. He appeared in ''A Walk in the Sun,'' ''Abilene Town'' and ''Ramrod.'' His big break came with the controversial ''Home of the Brave,'' which attacked racial prejudice in the military. Bridge's performance as a sympathetic member of a platoon torn by racial strife won critical acclaim. Bridges played Gary Cooper's vengeful deputy in ''High Noon'' and other important roles followed until he was caught in Hollywood's Red purge. During the 1940s, Bridges had been a member of the Actors' Lab, a radical theater group that staged plays in Hollywood. At the height of McCarthyism in the 1950s, his name was added to the industry's blacklist. ''It was a bad time,'' he said in 1971. ''I was always against prejudice of any kind, and when I was a member of the Actors' Lab, there was an opportunity to do something as part of a group to stop prejudice and help people.'' Bridges cleared his name with the FBI and congressional committees and was allowed to work again. He played leads in low-budget movies and featured roles in bigger films, then became active in live drama on TV. During an intense drama, ''Tragedy in a Temporary Town,'' he exclaimed excitedly, ''You goddamned stinking pigs!'' The NBC switchboard handled over 500 calls, most of them decrying the profanity. ''That made headlines, and I was being called in the middle of the night by reporters,'' he recalled. In 1957, Bridges took the role that changed his career: as Mike Nelson, a Navy frogman turned undersea investigator in ''Sea Hunt.'' The networks turned down the series as being too limited in scope, so producer Ivan Tors offered it in syndication. Soon it drew bigger ratings than the network shows and it lasted through 156 episodes. ''The series certainly brought me more notice than anything I have ever done before as an actor,'' he said in a 1959 interview. ''It has also brought me more money than anything else in my career. Artistic satisfaction? No, that is lacking. But fortunately I am able to get it by doing other things.'' Bridges starred in six other series: ''The Lloyd Bridges Show,'' ''The Loner,'' ''San Francisco International Airport'' ''Joe Forrester,'' ''Paper Dolls,'' and ''Capital News.'' He also appeared in dozens of television movies as well as such miniseries as ''Roots,'' ''Moviola,'' ''East of Eden,'' ''The Blue and the Gray'' and ''George Washington.'' In 1988 Bridges appeared in Francis Coppola's ''Tucker: The Man and His Dream'' as a corrupt senator who opposed a daring automaker, played by son Jeff. Other films include'' ''Cousins'' and ''Joe Versus the Volcano.'' ''Airplane!'' in 1980 opened a whole new career for Bridges. As a wacky air controller, he parodied his own movie performances. He followed with such comedies as ''Airplane II!'' and ''Hot Shots!'' Besides Beau and Jeff, Lloyd and Dorothy Bridges had a daughter, Cindy, and several grandchildren. Married more than 50 years, the couple lived in Westwood, a short distance from the UCLA campus where they met as drama students.
3/15/98 Dr. Benjamin Spock - .c The Associated Press BOSTON (March 16) - Dr. Benjamin Spock, the pediatrician whose common-sense theories of child care helped guide parents around the world during the last half-century, has died. He was 94. Spock died Sunday at his home in San Diego, said Dr. Stephen Pauker, a physician who said he had treated Dr. Spock for 12 years. ''He died with his family at home,'' Pauker said this morning from his home in Wellesley, Mass. He did not give the cause of death. Just 2 1/2 weeks ago, his wife pleaded for help in paying Spock's $10,000-a-month medical bills. Mary Morgan, 54, said insurance was covering only a fraction of the costs. ''Baby and Child Care,'' first published in 1946, was the bible of parents in the baby boom that followed World War II. ''Trust yourself,'' Spock told parents. ''You know more than you think you do.'' ''I wanted to be supportive of parents rather than to scold them,'' he said. ''The book set out very deliberately to counteract some of the rigidities of pediatric tradition, particularly in infant feeding. ''It emphasized the importance of great differences between individual babies, of the need for flexibility and of the lack of necessity to worry constantly about spoiling.'' In the years that followed, as the inexpensive paperback sold 50 million copies and was translated into more than 30 languages, Spock came under fire from critics who branded him the ''the father of permissiveness,'' responsible for a ''Spock-marked'' generation of hippies. Spock joined those youths in protests against nuclear technology and the Vietnam War. Vice President Spiro Agnew accused him of corrupting the youth of America; Spock claimed only a ''mild influence.'' Through it all, the big-boned, 6-foot-4 inch Spock said he never changed his basic philosophy on child care - ''to respect children because they're human beings and they deserve respect, and they'll grow up to be better people.'' ''But I've always said ask for respect from your children, ask for cooperation, ask for politeness. Give your children firm leadership.'' Said Dr. Marvin Drellich, professor of psychiatry at New York Medical College: ''Dr. Spock's book is universally accepted and esteemed even by those who disagree.'' ''Some physicians who have called him excessively permissive just didn't understand and gave his understanding approach to child rearing a negative label,'' Drellich said. ''He was blamed for the radical behavior of the youth in the '60s. But that didn't emerge from Spock's teachings. It was far more a reflection of the social and political climate.'' ''I didn't used to mind the word permissive, as an opposite of strictness, as long as it merely meant a relaxed way of guiding and controlling children,'' Spock once said. ''But now permissiveness is a bad word, and I absolutely refuse to admit I ever taught permissiveness. I never meant that children should be allowed to be uncooperative or impolite.'' In later years, he said he was becoming more moralistic about child ruling, and said parents should give their children strong values and encourage them to help others. ''I've come to the realization that a lot of our problems are because of a dearth of spiritual values,'' he said in an Associated Press interview in 1992, the year the sixth edition of his ''Baby and Child Care'' came out. A seventh edition was to be published by Pocket Books on May 2, Spock's birthday. ''Sexuality has lost a lot of its spiritual aspects,'' he said in 1993. ''In trying to make sex seem more natural and less scary, as it was in my childhood many years ago, we leaned over backwards and have forgotten to emphasize that sexuality has as much to do with spiritual matters as the physical and mental.'' Benjamin McLane Spock was born May 2, 1903, in New Haven, Conn., oldest of six children of a lawyer whose Dutch ancestors once spelled their names Spaak. He attended Phillips Academy and Yale University, where he joined the crew team and helped win a gold medal at the 1924 Olympics. He planned to become an architect, but decided on medicine after spending a summer as a counselor at a camp for crippled children. Following graduation from Yale in 1925, he took his medical degree at Columbia University and studied at the New York Psychoanalytic Institute. From 1933 to 1943, he worked in private practice in New York City while teaching pediatrics at Cornell University. ''One of my faults as a pediatrician has always been that I whoop it up too much with children,'' he once said, but parents delighted in his approach. He spent two years as a psychiatrist in the U.S. Naval Reserve Medical Corps and was discharged in 1946 as a lieutenant commander. At night, he worked on the exhaustively indexed book that disputed tomes advising parents not to kiss and hold their children. He advised parents that it was better to feed babies when they wanted to eat rather than make both parent and baby unhappy by adhering to a strict schedule. ''There were many parents who were very unhappy with the ideas like rigid feeding schedules,'' he said in a 1996 Associated Press interview. ''It was hard on babies, but it was harder still on mothers.'' While he thought he made it clear that parents should be firm, later editions of the book, originally titled ''The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care,'' stressed that children need standards and that parents also have a right to respect. ''Parents began to be afraid to impose on the child in any way,'' he said. Later, at the behest of feminists, he revised the book to remove references to the baby as ''he'' and to the parent as ''she.'' In 1951, after four years teaching psychiatry at the University of Minnesota, Spock joined the University of Pittsburgh as professor of child development. In 1955, he became a member of the faculty of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He wrote a column for nearly 30 years, first for Ladies Home Journal and later for Redbook. Spock first moved into the political limelight in 1962, warning of the possible hazards posed to children and nursing mothers by atmospheric nuclear testing. He was elected co-chairman of the National Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy. ''I believe that not only are nuclear arms much too dangerous to be tolerated on this Earth, but I believe that nuclear power is also much too dangerous,'' he said. The former political conservative also became a vocal opponent of the Vietnam War, leading a march on the Pentagon in 1967. He argued, ''What is the use of physicians like myself trying to help parents to bring up children healthy and happy, to have them killed in such numbers for a cause that is ignoble?'' ''People have said, 'You've turned your back on pediatrics,''' Spock said in 1992. ''I said, 'No. It took me until I was in my 60s to realize that politics was a part of pediatrics.'' In June 1968, Spock was convicted in Boston and sentenced to two years in prison for conspiracy to aid, abet and counsel young men to avoid the draft. The verdict was reversed on appeal. He ran for president in 1972 as a candidate of the Peoples Party, getting more than 75,000 votes. He said no one accused him of being too permissive until the late 1960s, when he began to be criticized by the Rev. Norman Vincent Peale and Agnew. ''Well, at least nobody could accuse me of having brought up Spiro Agnew,'' Spock quipped. In the 1970s, he wrote ''Raising Children in a Difficult Time,'' which discussed such issues as drugs, contraception, and day care. A later revision of ''Baby and Child Care,'' included material on single parents, stepparents and divorce, something he learned of firsthand following his own divorce and remarriage. In his later years, Spock traveled the nation, lecturing on child care, education and nuclear war, and spent his leisure time sailing off the coasts of Maine or the Virgin Islands or rowing on a lake in Arkansas, his second wife's home state. His first marriage, in 1927 to the former Jane Cheney, ended in divorce after 48 years. They had two sons - Michael, a museum director, and John, who studied architecture and became a construction company owner. Spock, who described his own parents as strict but loving, reflected that he was probably too stern in raising his sons. ''I never kissed them,'' he once said. ''Now when I see my sons, I throw my arms around them.'' Spock married Ms. Morgan, almost 40 years his junior, in 1976. He said later that he became more easy-going, able to appear in public without the traditional three-piece suit with watch chain, and he took up a health food diet.''I never leave his side,'' Ms. Morgan said last month in seeking financial help. ''And I'll never send him away to be cared for.'' Spock once said that he would like a New Orleans-style funeral, with a jazz band accompanying the casket. ''I love to dance and I'd love to be saying goodbye to my friends while the band was playing and they were dancing,'' he said. ''I want them to remember I was a dancing man in my day.''
4/5/98 Rob Pilatus - BONN (Reuters) - Rob Pilatus, half of pop duo Milli Vanilli, has been found dead in a Frankfurt hotel room, Germany's Bild am Sonntag newspaper said Sunday, quoting the artist's ex-manager. Pilatus was found dead on his hotel bed Friday evening with blood around his nose and mouth. Doctors at the scene diagnosed heart failure. Police were unable to confirm the report. A spokesman said they would be informed of a death only if circumstances had been suspicious. Milli Vanilli's former manager Frank Farian told Bild am Sonntag that Pilatus had just come out of drug rehabilitation. ``I'm totally shocked. Rob looked really good again after his therapy, and was full of optimism,'' Farian said. Bild said no post mortem had yet been carried out and it was too early to say whether drugs were responsible for Pilatus's death at the age of 32. Pilatus, together with Fabrice Morvan, had sold 30 million singles and 14 million albums since hitting the charts in 1988 with songs like ``Girl You Know It's True'' and ``Girl I'm Gonna Miss You.'' But fans were outraged when it emerged that the dreadlocked duo had not sung on their own records and had mimed onstage to playback tapes. The group was forced to hand back its Grammy for best new artist. Milli Vanilli's career went rapidly downhill after that, and it was Pilatus's various brushes with the law, and not the group's music, which started making headlines. Farian said that Pilatus had been planning a new start and had been due to fly to India from Frankfurt to complete his drug therapy program. ``We knew already Thursday that he had drunk some of his travel money,'' Farian told Bild am Sonntag. ``We knew that he was taking tablets which were very dangerous in combination with alcohol. ``From Friday lunchtime on we called him in his hotel. He didn't pick up the phone. In the end we had to break into his room. But Rob had already been dead for 18 hours.'' Pilatus was born in New York, but grew up with adoptive parents in Munich, where he was expected to be buried.
4/6/98 - Tammy Wynette - .c The Associated Press NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 7) - She grew up picking cotton in Mississippi, worked as a beautician and sang for the people who, like her, knew about hardship and heartache. Tammy Wynette, whose hits included the classic country ode ''Stand by Your Man,'' died Monday at age 55 while napping at her Nashville home. The cause of her death was believed to be a blood clot, spokeswoman Evelyn Shriver said. Wynette had had a series of health problems in recent years. ''Her story is really the story of country music,'' said Kyle Young of the Country Music Foundation. ''From humble beginnings as a hairdresser, to superstardom. ''The strength of her music was she connected with a wide audience, because she really tapped into real situations in people's lives,'' he said. Wynette scored many duet hits with George Jones, her husband from 1969-75. They tended to be about either domestic bliss or strife, as did solo Wynette hits like ''D-I-V-O-R-C-E'' and ''My Man.'' She had a robust voice that could deliver entire songs seemingly on the verge of tears. Wynette recorded more than 50 albums and sold more than 30 million records, scoring 39 Top 10 hits from 1967-88. Twenty topped the charts. Country music fans polled for the annual Music City News awards voted Wynette a legend in 1991. She said it was premature. ''I don't consider myself a legend. I think it's kind of overused,'' said Wynette, who was known as ''the first lady of country music.'' She was a three-time winner of the Country Music Association's female vocalist of the year award - 1968 to 1970. Only Reba McEntire has won the honor more times, with four. She was born Virginia Wynette Pugh on a cotton farm in Itawamba County, Miss., and worked in the fields as a child. She later worked as a waitress, a doctor's receptionist, a barmaid and a shoe factory worker. In the mid-1960s, she was working as a beautician in Birmingham, Ala., and making periodic 180-mile trips to Nashville in hopes of getting discovered as a singer. Billy Sherrill, who co-wrote ''Stand By Your Man'' with Wynette, signed her to Epic Records and produced her pivotal early hits. Other hits included ''I Don't Wanna Play House,'' ''Womanhood,'' ''Take Me to Your World,'' ''Your Good Girl's Gonna Go Bad,'' and ''The Ways to Love a Man.'' The genius of ''Stand By Your Man'' was how Wynette's tearful voice undercut the lyrics, capturing the pain of a woman struggling to be true to a man who probably didn't deserve it. ''She was as soulful a singer as I've ever heard,'' said producer Don Was, who has worked with Willie Nelson and Bonnie Raitt. ''In her own way, she was every bit as soulful as someone like Aretha Franklin.'' Added country singer Patty Loveless: ''When Tammy opened her mouth, it was the soul of country music. ... Tammy, Dolly (Parton) and Loretta (Lynn) - that was, and always will be, the heart of this music.'' Throughout Wynette's 25-year career, stormy marriages and hospital stays threatened to overshadow one of the most successful singing stories in country music history. In 1978, she was abducted at a Nashville shopping center, driven 80 miles in her luxury car, beaten and released by a masked assailant. No one was ever arrested, though Wynette later said the man apparently ended up in prison for another crime. Wynette's personal life settled down that year when she married her fifth and final husband, George Richey. In 1988, she filed for bankruptcy as a result of a sour investment in two Florida shopping centers. In 1992, her name and best-known song entered the presidential campaign when Hillary Rodham Clinton, stressing that her support of her husband was more than routine, said: ''I'm not sitting here like some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette.'' Wynette replied angrily that Mrs. Clinton ''offended every true country music fan and every person who has 'made it on their own' with no one to take them to a White House.'' She added that if she and the Yale-educated Mrs. Clinton ever met, ''I can assure you, in spite of your education, you will find me to be just as bright as yourself.'' Mrs. Clinton said she didn't mean to hurt Wynette's feelings, and Wynette later performed at a Clinton fund-raiser. She was hospitalized for various ailments dozens of times, and admitted in the late 1970s to being dependent on painkilling drugs. She had several operations in the last 10 years to relieve recurring inflammation and infections of her bile duct. Besides husband Richey, Wynette is survived by five daughters, a son and seven grandchildren.
4/17/98 Linda McCartney - .c The Associated Press LONDON (April 19) - Linda McCartney, the American photographer who broke a generation of teen-age girls' hearts when she married Beatle Paul McCartney, has died of cancer, her publicist said Sunday. She was 56. Linda McCartney died Friday while on vacation in Santa Barbara, Calif., Geoff Baker said. Her husband and children were with her. ''The blessing was that the end came quickly and she didn't suffer,'' a statement from Paul McCartney's office said. Two days before her death, Linda and Paul had been horseback riding, one of her main passions, the statement said. The couple announced in December 1995 that Linda McCartney, a vegetarian who marketed her own meat-free dishes, was being treated for breast cancer. The treatment at first appeared to be working well, but in March the cancer was found to have spread to her liver, Sunday's statement said. It said Sir Paul, 55, will issue a statement later in the week and asked that people wanting to send flowers should give a donation to charities involved in cancer research, animal welfare, ''or - best of all - the tribute that Linda herself would like best: Go veggie.'' Linda Eastman was already acclaimed for her moody, gritty photographs when she married Paul McCartney in 1969. They had three children, Mary, 27, Stella, 25, and James, 19. The McCartneys largely avoided the celebrity lifestyle and lived quietly in remote homes in southern England and Scotland, saying they wanted a normal upbringing for their children and Heather, Linda McCartney's daughter from her first marriage to geophysicist John Melvyn See. Yoko Ono, the widow of Beatle John Lennon, said she was deeply saddened to hear of McCartney's death. ''She's in a state of shock,'' Ono's publicist Elliott Mintz said. ''She spoke to Linda within the past year and Linda sounded her usual, powerful self to Yoko.'' Many activists hailed her support for their causes. ''Linda was always upbeat about our work against cruelty and we'll fight harder in her name,'' Dan Mathews, a campaign director for the Washington, D.C.-based People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said Sunday. ''Linda understood the power of the fork and converted many people to vegetarianism both at home and on tour.'' A vegetarian long before it became fashionable, Linda McCartney lent her name to a range of frozen dishes and in 1991 published a cookbook. Andrew Davies, a spokesman for the environmental group Greenpeace said: ''Paul and Linda have been a valuable assistance to us,'' noting a recent letter they sent to President Bill Clinton regarding whale hunting, which has tripled since he took office. Born into a wealthy family, Linda Eastman grew up in Scarsdale, N.Y. Her father, Lee Eastman, was a lawyer; her mother died in a plane crash when she was 19. After majoring in art history at the University of Arizona, she moved to New York City at the age of 21, becoming a receptionist at Town and Country magazine. A lucky break enabled her to photograph the Rolling Stones, and she was asked to capture other rock stars on camera. Soon she was dating celebrities, including actor Warren Beatty and a manager of The Who, Chris Stamp. During a trip to London in May 1967 she met Paul at the launch of the Beatles' ''Sergeant Pepper'' album. They married in London two years later. Linda McCartney exhibited her photography in some 50 galleries worldwide, including London's prestigious Victoria and Albert Museum. When she joined her husband's new band, Wings, in 1972, as a keyboard player, she was ridiculed for her lack of musicality. In 1972, the McCartneys were fined for possessing marijuana and in another incident, in 1984, they both admitted carrying the drug. Last year, she became Lady Linda when her husband was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. Daughter Stella was appointed head designer at the Paris fashion house Chloe last year and recently narrated a video exposing conditions at fur farms. Speaking about his wife's fight against cancer in an earlier interview, Paul McCartney called her ''the most positive person on earth.'' Asked how they remained so close, he replied, ''I guess it's because we just adore each other.'' Funeral arrangements were not immediately available. It was unclear whether her body would be returned to England for burial. AP-NY-04-19-98 1855EDT ***UPDATE*** Linda McCartney died in Tuscon, AZ, not Santa Barbara, CA as previously reported. This apparently was to help the McCartney family mourn in private without having cameras shoved in their faces. Linda McCartney was cremated and scattered on the family farm in England. Linda's doctor has confirmed that she died of natural causes and that it was NOT an assisted suicide. ~ Karen