Back to Life In Legacy Main Page Pages for Previous Weeks Celebrity Deaths Message Board Most Wanted Pictures Search for Somebody Links to Other Great Sites Send E-mail, Get Help, etc.

Life In Legacy - Week of November 30, 2002

Hold pointer over photo for person's name. Click on photo to go to brief obit. Click on name to return to picture.

Billie Bird - Actress & comedian George Christian - LBJ's press secretary Verne Winchell - 'The Donut King' Karel Reisz - Film director John Rawls - Philosopher Jackie Gayle - Standup comedian Roberto Matta - Surrealist painter Parley Baer - Prolific character actor Tyesha Edwards - Hit by random bullet Morris N. Young - Houdini enthusiast Little Joe Baird - Jazz trombonist Charles Lee - Critic Marion Carpenter - Political photographer Eldridge Fox - Gospel singer Buddy Cobb - Ranching pioneer Eric Tachau - Kentucky civil rights activist Payita Contreras - Mistress to Chilean president Cecil Dowdy - All-American college football player Neal Edwards - Wanted to be a Marine James Griffin - 'Black statesman of St. Paul' Nina Bamberger - Emmy-nominated TV producer Greg Woods - Student loan CEO Brandon Fails - A&M football freshman Suzie Ward - Eddie's twin Eddie Ward - Suzie's twin Thunder Sugiyama - Professional wrestler Harriet Doerr - Author Eugene Rostow - Advisor to LBJ Fernanda Gattinoni - Fashion designer Shawn Ostendorff - Fell thru ice Cody Ostendorff - Fell thru ice Mark Ostendorff - Fell thru ice Joseph Slater - Helped re-form Germany Robert Brentano - Medieval scholar Alexander Williams - Thought Sigourney was God Ed Beardsley - Founded Challenger Division Billy Travis - Pro wrestler Antonia Stone - Playing To Win founder Leon Weiner - Housing advocate Noel Regney - Wrote 'Do You Hear What I Hear' Wally Kinnan - Trumpet player and weatherman Ed Bliss - Newsman Webster Lewis - Conductor & Pianist Edward R. Graff - Accused molester Polo Montanez - Cuban music star Stanley Black - Pianist & bandleader James Dutt - Led Beatrice Foods Leah Harrison - Child abuse expert Ralph Engelstad - Imperial Palace owner Jim Butterfield - HOF college football coach Ron Bentz - Noted tree farmer Alice McGuire Hoppes - World War I veteran George Guest - Choirmaster Charles Finkl - Steel magnate John Drummond - 17th Earl of Perth Dr. Rupert Billingham - Transplant pioneer Robert Straub - Oregon governor Edwin Mechem - New Mexico governor Daniel Gélin - French movie star Florence Mahoney - Force behind NIH Wolfgang Preiss - German actor Charles Chamberlain - Congressman from Michigan Edlee Bankhead - Possibly worlds oldest man Dave 'Snaker' Ray - Blues guitarist Lewis Feuer - Intellectual scholar Fred Andros - Naughty water superintendent Charles Welton - 'Country Doctor At War In Laos' Ray Avery - Noted jazz photographer Dick Stilwell - Actor Steve Bradley - Father of slope maintenance Painting by Roberto Matta Sketch by David McRae

News and Entertainment
Ray Avery - Jazz photographer and rare jazz record collector whose photographs documented the birth of West Coast jazz in the 1950’s, and have appeared on over 200 album covers, and whose work was showcased in the 1997 book “Stars of Jazz”, died of a heart attack Nov. 17 at age 82.
Parley Baer - Familiar character actor who appeared in more than 60 movies and 1,600 TV shows (1,600!), who acted steadily from the early 30’s until a stroke in 1997, probably best known as Mayor Roy Stoner on “The Andy Griffith Show” (though he appeared in just about every TV show), died after a stroke on Nov. 22 at age 88.
Taswell “Little Joe” Baird - Jazz trombonist who played on recordings by Ella Fitzgerald, Charlie Parker, Billy Eckstein and Louis Armstrong among others, and who was attacked on Nov. 5 and severely beaten and robbed of $80, succumbed to his injuries on Nov. 22 at age 80.
Nina Bamberger - Emmy-nominated producer of the children’s TV show “Dragon Tales”, who also produced many “Sesame Street”-related shows and specials for PBS, died Nov. 20 of ovarian cancer at age 48.
Billie Bird - Actress and comedienne who appeared in dozens of movies and TV shows since the 1950’s, usually playing old ladies, including memorable roles in “Home Alone”, “Jury Duty” and several “Police Academy” movies, and who was a semi-regular on the TV show “Dear John”, died Nov. 27 of Alzheimer's disease at age 94.
Stanley Black - British jazz pianist and bandleader who scored the soundtracks for nearly 200 movies, who recorded with American jazz greats Benny Carter and Coleman Hawkins, and was a leader in the British light music scene, died Nov. 26 at age 89.
Ed Bliss - News writer and editor for CBS News for 25 years who worked closely with Edward R. Murrow, Fred Friendly and Walter Cronkikte, and was the person sitting behind Cronkite when he announced the death of President Kennedy, died on Nov. 25 of a respiratory disorder at age 90.
Eldridge Fox - Founder and baritone of the contemporary gospel music group the Kingsman Quartet, who recorded dozens of albums since forming in 1956, died Nov. 21 after several strokes at age 66.
Jackie Gayle - Standup comedian who opened for Frank Sinatra, Tom Jones and Tony Bennett, who was a regular on Dean Martin’s Celebrity Roasts in the 1970’s, and appeared in the films “Tin Men”, “Broadway Danny Rose” and his own HBO special “On Location With Jackie Gayle”, died Nov. 23 after open heart surgery at age 76.
Daniel Gélin - French movie star best known in the U.S. for playing Louis Bernard, the mysterious murder victim in Hitchcock’s “The Man Who Know Too Much” in 1956, but was known in France for his eclectic choice of roles, died of kidney failure on Nov. 29 at age 81.
George Guest - Organist and choirmaster at St. John’s College in Cambridge UK from 1951 to 1991, who transformed the choir into one of the most renowned, recording more than 60 albums and touring the world, died Nov. 20 at age 78.
Wally Kinnan - Trumpet player who played with Jimmy Dorsey and Charlie Burnett in the late 1940’s but is probably best known as a TV weatherman for many in years on TV stations in Philadelphia, Cleveland, Oklahoma City and Tampa, died Nov. 22 of an aortic aneurysm at age 83.
Webster Lewis - Pianist and arranger known for conducting 50- and 60- piece orchestras that played African-American pop music by such artists as Curtis Mayfield, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye, in classical music venues, died of diabetes complications on Nov. 20 at age 59.
Polo Montanez - Cuba’s best selling commercial music artist of the last 15 months who soared to fame in 2001 with his guajiro album “Guajiro Natural” which spawned a #1 hit on U.S. Cuban radio “Un Monton De Estrellas”, and whose popularity extended throughout Latin America, was killed in a car accident (as was his stepson) on Nov. 25 at the age of 47.
Wolfgang Preiss - German actor who appeared in over 100 movies, including several U.S. films including “Raid on Rommel”, “A Bridge Too Far”, “Von Ryan’s Express”, “The Longest Day” and the mini-series “War and Remembrance” and “Sidney Sheldon’s Bloodline”, died Nov. 27 at age 82.
Dave "Snaker" Ray - Blues guitarist and influential figure in the 1960’s folk-blues scene who as part of the trio Koerner, Ray & Glover released the landmark “Blues, Rags and Hollers” album in 1962, and later helped launch Bonnie Raitt’s career, died on Nov. 28 of lung cancer at age 59.
Noel Regney - French-born American songwriter who is best known for co-writing the Christmas standard “Do You Hear What I Hear?” in 1962 with Gloria Shayne, as well as Bobby Vinton’s hit “Rain Rain Go Away” among others, died Nov. 26 of Pick’s disease at age 80.
Karel Reisz - Czech-born film director who was instrumental in championing the Free Cinema movement in the late 50’s and early 60’s, who directed great films like “Saturday Night and Sunday Morning” (Albert Finney’s debut), “The French Lieutenant's Woman” (which made Meryl Streep a star), “Who’ll Stop the Rain” and “Sweet Dreams”, died Nov. 25 of a blood disorder at age 76.
Dick Stilwell - Actor in TV and movies who was a retired Army lieutenant colonel and son of General Richard Stilwell, who played authoritarian figures (cops/military) in films like “Forrest Gump”, “L.A. Confidential” and “Pelican Brief” and in TV series like “The Practice”, was killed in a car accident on Nov. 23 at age 59.

Sports
Ed Beardsley - Man who in 1989 founded the Challenger Division, a Little League baseball division for disabled children, which now has 25,000 participants in the program in several states, died Nov. 26 at age 61.
Steve Bradley - U.S. skiing innovator who was known as the “father of slope maintenance”, who invented a machine that flattened bumps in the slope and who made a career out of grooming slopes for skiing, died of pneumonia Nov. 13 at age 86.
Jim Butterfield - Hall of Fame college football coach who won 3 national titles in Division III in 1979, 1988 and 1991 at Ithaca Collage, died of Alzheimer’s on Nov. 26 at age 74.
Bob DeLauer - Offensive lineman at USC from 1939 to 1941 whose 1941 team won the Rose Bowl, and who played several seasons in the NFL with the Rams and Browns, died on Nov. 27 of emphysema at age 82.
Cecil Dowdy - All-American offensive lineman who played on two national championship teams at Alabama in 1964 and 1965, accidentally shot himself in the face while hunting on Nov. 24. He was 57.
Brandon Fails - Freshman football player at Texas A&M who had appeared in four games this year for the Aggies, died of a blood clot in his lung after having trouble breathing on Nov. 25. He was 18 years old.
Tsuneharu “Thunder” Sugiyama - Professional wrestler who was a member of the 1964 Japanese Olympic team and wrestled American greats Andre the Giant, Billy Robinson and Billy Graham, and later became a Japanese TV personality, died of diabetes-related heart failure on Nov 23. at age 62.
Billy Travis - Professional wrestler who had wrestled on the various circuits beginning in the mid-1980’s and was paired in tag teams with headliners like Scott Steiner and Jeff Jarrett, died of a heart attack on Nov. 23 at age 40.

Art and Literature
Robert Brentano - Author and scholar of medieval English and Italian history who wrote six books including "Rome Before Avignon: A Social History of 13th-Century Rome", and who taught at UC-Berkeley for 50 years, died after an asthma attack on Nov. 21 at age 76.
Harriet Doerr - Award-winning novelist who didn’t publish her first book until age 74, whose first book “Stones for Ibarra” was awarded the National Book Award in 1984, and who also wrote "Consider This, Senora" in 1988, a bestseller that was on Publisher’s Weekly’s best books of the year list, died Nov. 25 after a fall at her home at age 92.
Lewis Feuer - Intellectual scholar who wrote books and articles about European philosophy, modern science, Marxist orthodoxy and neo-conservativism including his best-known book “Spinoza and the Rise of Liberalism”, died Nov. 24 at age 89.
Fernanda Gattinoni - Italian jet-set fashion designer who made her name in the 50’s and 60’s Rome cinema boon, who designed dresses for luminaries like Jackie Kennedy, Audrey Hepburn, Lana Turner and Ingrid Bergman, and continued to be actively involved in her fashion business until the day of her death, died Nov. 25 at age 95.
Dr. Charles Lee - University of Pennsylvania English professor and author of 11 books who was a fixture on Philadelphia’s radio and TV stations from the 1950’s until the late 90’s, as a cultural arts expert and critic, died Nov. 20 of a brain tumor at age 89.
Ellis Lucia - Author of hundreds of articles and more than a dozen books on life in the West often chronicling actual events, including "The Saga of Ben Holladay", "Tillamook Burn Country" and "Klondike Kate", died on Nov. 20 at age 80.
Roberto Matta - Chilean-born painter and sculptor, who was drawn to surrealism as a painter when he met Salvador Dali in 1937, whose sense of humor and use of color distinguished him from other painters in the surrealist genre, and who was one of the last major figures of early 20th century painting, died Nov. 23 at age 91.
David McRae - Scottish artist turned naturalist known for his sketches of mammals, especially otters and bats, who became a licensed bat consultant training others on the their handling, died on Nov. 24 from rabies (the first person to die of rabies in the UK in 100 years) after being bitten by a bat. He was 56.
John Rawls - One of the greatest of the 20th century philosophers, best known for his 1971 book “A Theory of Justice”, which revived the study of ethics in philosophy and the concept of the social compact, which is a bond of rights and obligations linking all people, died Nov. 24 of undisclosed causes at age 81.
Morris N. Young - Author, collector of books on magic and artifacts of the magician’s trade, and foremost authority on Harry Houdini, who wrote numerous books on his interests including “Presto Prestige", "Houdini On Magic" and "Houdini's Fabulous Magic", died on Nov. 13 of a ruptured aneurysm at age 93.

Politics and Military
Marion Carpenter - Groundbreaking White House photographer for President Truman, who was the first woman photographer to travel with a president, but whose career as a photographer ended shortly after Truman left office, was found dead Oct. 29 of natural causes, alone and destitute, at age 82.
Charles Chamberlain - Republican congressman from Michigan who served from 1956 to 1974, known for his aggressive campaigning and his long effort and ultimate success in passing a bill to repeal the excise tax on cars and trucks, died of renal and congestive heart failure on Nov. 25 at age 85.
George Christian - Press secretary to President Lyndon Johnson, who was a calming influence at the White House during a tumultuous time, and was instrumental in influencing Johnson not to run again in 1968, died of lung cancer on Nov. 27 at age 75.
Miria “Payita” Contreras - Longtime mistress and political collaborator of Chilean president Salvador Allende, who began to work for him beginning with his first unsuccessful run for president in 1958, thru his successful election in 1970, and until his death in 1973, died on Nov. 22 at age 74.
John Drummond - 17th Earl of Perth, who oversaw Britain’s colonies in the 1950’s and 60’s as well as the redevelopment of parts of war-damaged London after WW2, died Nov. 25 at age 95.
James Griffin - St. Paul, Minnesota’s first black deputy chief and long time School Board member who was called “the first black statesman of St. Paul”, died Nov. 23 of bladder cancer at age 85.
Alice McGuire Hoppes - One of the nations oldest World War I veterans, who enlisted in the Navy in 1919 as a nurse, just weeks before Treaty of Versailles was signed ending the war, died Nov. 26 at age 109.
Woodrow Jones - Congressman from North Carolina from 1950 to 1956, who made his impact as a strict but fair judge and presided over 1988’s high profile “Project Westvote” case, where voters were paid in cash and liquor to vote for candidates (dozens were convicted of vote buying), died Nov. 25 of a heart attack at age 88.
Florence Mahoney - Health care advocate known for her relentless persistence that was the driving force behind the establishment of the National Institute of Health and National Institute on Aging, and who played a key role in the creation of the Medicare program in 1965, died Nov. 29 at age 103.
Edwin Mechem - Four term Republican governor of New Mexico during the 1950’s who served in the U.S. Senate in the 1960’s, and retired into a long and successful career as a federal judge, died Nov. 27 of a heart condition at age 90.
Eugene Rostow - Senior State Department official under Lyndon B. Johnson who adamantly defended the US’s role in the Vietnam War saying it was our duty as a great power to the people of Vietnam, and who was the older brother of then national security advisor Walt Rostow, died Nov. 26 of congestive heart failure at age 89.
Joseph Slater - U.S. State Department official who was instrumental in facilitating the transformation of Nazi Germany into a modern democracy after WW2 with his work on the Four Power Allied Control Council, and as a member of the planning staff that helped form NATO, died of Parkinson’s disease on Nov. 26 at age 80.
Robert Straub - Governor of Oregon from 1975 to 1979, who as a Democrat is credited with hiring more woman and minorities in government and reducing Oregon’s unemployment rate, died of Alzheimer’s disease on Nov. 27 at age 82.
Eric Tachau - Kentucky civil rights activist who in 1964 organized a massive march on Frankfort that helped lead to the passage of Kentucky's Civil Rights Act, and later was the principal author of Kentucky’s no-fault auto insurance law, died of colon cancer on Nov. 23 at age 78.
Charles Weldon - Chief medical officer for the U.S. Agency for International Development during the Vietnam War, who attained semi-legendary status in the war by working among the impoverished Hmong people in Laos while secretly fighting a Communist takeover of the country, chronicled in the 1999 memoir "Tragedy In Paradise: A Country Doctor At War In Laos", died of prostate cancer on Nov. 22 at age 82.

Social and Religion
Fred Andros - Poughkeepsie, NY’s water superintendent who was convicted last year of ordering one of his female lovers in 1999 to kill his other lover (the 3 were involved in a ménage-a-trois and often filmed their trysts at the water pumping station where Andros worked), died of a heart attack on Nov. 29 in prison at age 63.
Edlee Bankhead - Mississippi man who claimed to be the son of slaves and 119 years old, but did not have documentation, and who in September 2002 became one of the first plaintiffs to file suit for slave reparations, died Nov. 26 of a heart attack at age 119(?).
Neal Edwards - Missouri teen who planned to become a combat engineer in the Marines and entered basic training earlier in the month in San Diego, collapsed and died on Nov. 23 after during drills on the 11th day of his training. He was 18.
Tyesha Edwards - Minneapolis sixth grader, straight-A student, cheerleader and sports enthusiast who was doing her homework with her 6-year old sister at the family’s computer, was struck and killed by a bullet that came thru the window of their home on Nov. 23, apparently a random gunshot. She was 11 years old.
Edward R. Graff - Texas priest who was arrested in October for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy, with dozens of other victims now coming forward, and who fell in the shower his first weekend in jail breaking his hip, died Nov. 25 of complications at the age of 73.
Leah Harrison - An expert on child abuse who founded the Z.B. Butler Child Protection Center, which helped shape anti-child-abuse efforts throughout the country, died Nov. 25 of acute myelogenous leukemia at age 55.
Shawn, Cody and Mark Ostendorff - Brothers from Anoka County, Minnesota who fell through the ice on a pond near their home on Nov. 19 and were found by their mother. Shawn, 6, and Cody, 5, could not be resuscitated and Mark, 2, died Nov. 25.
Antonia Stone - Promoter of personal computers who started Playing To Win, Inc. (now Community Technology Center’s Network) in 1983 to instruct the poor and imprisoned about the importance of PC’s and their use, and whose goal is to create “a society where all people are equally empowered by technology”, died Nov.21 at age 72.
Eddie & Suzie Ward - Twin brother and sister from Florida who were attending college together in Tallahassee and were planning to celebrate their birthday the next day, were both killed on Nov. 23 in a single car accident just hours short of their 21st birthday.
Alexander Williams - Georgia rapist and murderer who had his death sentence overturned just days before his scheduled execution in February 2002 because he was schizophrenic and claimed Sigourney Weaver was God (prosecutors argued that he could have been made sane enough to execute with medication), was found dead in his cell on Nov. 25 after hanging himself. He was 34 years old.

Business and Science
Ron Bentz - Oregon man who transformed his 600 acre farm into a thriving forest called the Blue Den Ranch, which includes 5 lakes stocked with rainbow trout, and who was named the nation’s outstanding tree farmer of the year on Nov. 9, died of a heart attack on Nov. 26 at age 66.
Dr. Rupert Billingham - Researcher whose studies in the early 50’s into “inoculation” as a means to coax a body into accepting foreign tissue helped pave the way for organ transplants, died of Parkinson’s disease on Nov. 16 at age 81.
A.B. “Buddy” Cobb - Pioneering Montana rancher who introduced the first Charolais cattle to the state from France in 1955, and was the longest breeder of Charolais cattle in the U.S., died Nov. 23 of natural causes at age 82.
James Dutt - Chairman of Beatrice Companies from 1979 to 1985 who orchestrated the acquisitions that made Beatrice the huge consumer products conglomerate (Samsonite, Hunt-Wesson, Playtex, Tropicana, among numerous others), but the company fell on hard times after he was ousted and eventually liquidated, took his own life on Oct. 28 at age 77.
Ralph Engelstad - One of the U.S.’s richest individuals who owned the Imperial Palace Casino’s in Las Vegas and Biloxi, and was a huge benefactor to the University of North Dakota, died of lung cancer on Nov. 26 at age 72.
Charles Finkl - Chairman and CEO of A. Finkl & Sons steel manufacturers and a fourth-generation steel magnate, who made his company a pioneer in the field of ladle metallurgy (a method of making steel stronger by cooling it under a vacuum – but you already knew that), died Nov. 24 of amyloidosis at age 82.
Joseph Soshnik - President of the University of Nebraska from 1968 to 1971 during a time when students took over a campus building in a Vietnam war protest, died Nov. 22 at age 82.
Leon Weiner - CEO of Weiner and Assoc. developers and president of the National Assoc. of Home Builders, who was a national housing advocate of affordable housing for low income families and the elderly, died Nov. 17 of cardiac arrest at age 82.
Verne Winchell - Founder of Winchell’s Donuts and nicknamed “The Donut King” who opened the first donut shop in 1948 in Arcadia, California, and sold his interest in the business in 1984 for $600 million, who was chairman of Denny’s Restaurants for several years and a very successful horse owner and breeder, died on Nov. 26 of a heart attack at age 87.
Greg Woods - CEO of the Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid Office, which provides access to loans, grants and aid to millions of post-secondary students, died Nov. 20 of pancreatic cancer at age 59.

Return to Main Page
Return to Top