Jace Bugg - Aspiring professional golfer who had been in contention for a spot on the PGA tour before being diagnosed with leukemia in 2002, who had earned a membership on the Buy.com Tour with his victory at the 2002 Arkansas Classic, and who had previously played on the Canadian Tour for three years, succumbed to leukemia on Dec. 4 in Henderson, KY at age 27.
Cecil Cornish - Legendary rodeo performer who traveled in rodeos across the U.S. and Canada beginning in the 1920's, who was known for his trick Brahma bull, Danger, who awed crowds by leaping over cars and through fire, and who was inducted into both the National Cowboy Hall of Fame and the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, died Dec. 4 in Enid, OK at age 94.
Robert "Duck" Dowell - Head basketball coach at Pepperdine University for 20 years during the 40's, 50's and 60's, who was also the schools athletic director for 13 years, and who played professional basketball in the NPBL (pre-cursor to the NBA) during the 1930's for Akron and was named to the all-star team in 1938, died Nov. 27 in Malibu, CA at age 91.
Gertrude Ederle - Legendary American swimmer who in 1926 became the first woman to swim the English Channel, swimming from Cape Griz-Nez, France, to Kingsdown, England in 14 hours and 30 minutes (2 hours faster than any of the five men who had swum it before her), and who became a celebrity in both England and America because of her feat, died Nov. 30 in Wyckoff, NJ at age 98.
Lori Romerio Gardner - Wife of former San Francisco Giants pitcher and bullpen coach Mark Gardner, who was a former All-American softball pitcher at Fresno State University, who had undergone two liver transplants since being diagnosed with liver cancer in 1997, succumbed to the disease on Nov. 27 in Palo Alto, CA at the age of 39.
Paul Grant - Bodybuilder who won the title of Mr. Universe when competing against actor Lou Ferringo, star of the TV series The Hulk, and who took part in competitions across the world in the 1970s winning numerous titles such as Mr. Europe and Mr. World, who was president of the Welsh Federation of Bodybuilders, and who in his mid-30s, was struck down with a rare kidney illness which affected his eyesight, died Nov. 23 in Wales at the age of 60.
Julius "Whitey" Horai - Beloved and longtime employee of the New York Giants football team, who started as a part-time staffer in 1951 and worked in nearly every area of the team in the ensuing 52 years, and who was known in the Giants offices as "The Commish", died Nov. 29 in Staten Island, NY from injuries suffered in a fall at the age of 75.
Gayle Olinekova - Marathon runner, fitness guru and author, who in 1979 won the New Orleans Marathon in the third fastest time ever for a woman, who wrote 5 books on healthy lifestyles, but who is probably best known for her unusually chiseled and muscular legs which were profiled in a 1981 Sports Illustrated article as the "Greatest Legs to Ever Stride on the Earth" (she later posed nude for photographer Helmut Newton), and whose jogs on Venice beach in the early 80's would "draw astonished looks from onlookers", died Nov. 26 of cancer in Duarte, CA at age 50.
Jerry Tuite - Professional wrestler who wrestled as The Wall, Malice, Snuff and Gigantes, who had wrestled since 1994 for the WCW, NWA:TNA and All Japan Pro Wrestling, and who in 2002 become the first AAW champion, was found dead on Dec. 6 in Japan of an acute heart attack at age 36.
Art and Literature
Maggie Bradbury - Wife of author Ray Bradbury who went to work full time after they were married in 1947 so he could stay home and write, and who remained married to him for 56 years, died Nov. 25 in Los Angeles at age 81.
Barry Broadfoot - Vancouver Sun writer and the author of an impressive collection of books based on the personal stories of thousands of Canadians, who never made the transition from the rickety typewriters of the 1950s to a computer and never learned to type properly, who suffered a stroke in 1998, which shattered his short-term memory and took his sight, died Nov. 28 in Nanaimo at the age of 77.
Ranulph Bye - One of America's premier watercolorists, known for his paintings of weathered and ramshackle buildings in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, whose works are on display at the Smithsonian Institution and other major museums, died Nov. 19 of pneumonia in Doylestown, PA at age 87.
Alan Davidson - British food writer best known as author of "The Oxford Companion to Food", the 900-page book that presented an immense amount of information about ingredients, food preparation and world cuisine, who also had a career as a foreign diplomat, died Dec. 2 in London at age 79.
Antonia Forest (real name Patricia Rubinstein) - Best-selling British author of children's books, who published 13 books about the fictional Marlow family (her entire output over a 35 year period), with titles such as "The Marlows and the Traitor" and "Falconer's Lure", whose first editions are some of the most sought after among book collectors, and who was called "one of the best children's writers of the 20th century" by The Cambridge Guide to Children's Books, died Nov. 29 in Bournemouth, Dorset, England at age 88.
Kenneth Hanson - Celebrated Northwest poet whose spare, lyrical work evoked both the stillness and intensity of life, who's work received national and regional recognition, including the 1966 Lamont Award of the Academy of American Poets "for the discovery and encouragement of new poetic genius," and the Theodore Roethke Award for best poems by a Northwest poet in 1964 and 1965, whose work was sent out by Carolyn Kizer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and longtime friend, because Hanson was too shy to do it himself, died Nov. 28 in Athens, Greece at the age of 81.
Greta Kessenich - Expert on the care and nomenclature of peonies and the author of several books on the fragrant garden flower, who for more than 30 years, was secretary and treasurer of the American Peony Society and for many of those years edited the organization's quarterly journal, the Peony Bulletin. She had just put the year's last issue to bed before she died on Dec. 3 in Hopkins, MN at the age of 98.
Priscilla Kidder - Notable wedding dress designer who worked as Priscilla of Boston, who made the wedding gowns for Princess Grace, Julie Nixon, Tricia Nixon and Luci Baines Johnson, among many other high society clients, and whose gowns are on permanent display at the Smithsonian, died Nov. 30 in Winchester, MA at age 86.
Politics and Military
Barber Conable - U.S. congressman from New York who held office for 20 years, who during 1965 to 1985 rose to be senior Republican on the powerful tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, who from 1986 to 1991 was president of the World Bank, the agency that lends billions of dollars to developing nations, collapsed with a blood infection in September and died Nov. 30 in Sarasota, FL of complications from a strep infection at the age of 81.
Bodan Kosic - Ukranian-born man accused of killing Jews in Nazi territory during World War II as part of a Ukrainian police unit that operated under Nazi orders from 1942-44, who was being prepared for extradition to Poland from Central America for trial on alleged crimes against humanity, but who had a stroke on Nov. 26, died Dec. 1 in Costa Rica of the affects of the stroke at the age of 80.
Raymond Pettine - US attorney and federal judge in Rhode Island, whose rulings in several prominent cases included ordering an overhaul of the Rhode Island prison system and banning a Nativity scene on public property, who in the 1960's, was called one of the nation's top 3 federal prosecutors by then attorney general Robert F. Kennedy, died on Nov. 17 in Dallas at the age of 91.
Mary Pinkett - Labor advocate and longtime New York City politician, who was the first African-American woman elected to City Council, where she served from 1974 until 2001, who was known for her skill as a speaker and debater, and whose handpicked successor James Davis was gunned down at City Hall in July 2003, died Dec. 4 in New York City of cancer complications at age 72.
William Donner Roosevelt - Grandson of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt and child of their second oldest son Elliot Roosevelt, who had a career as an investment banker, died Dec. 1 in West Palm Beach, FL of prostate cancer at age 72.
Gus Weiss - Advisor to four presidents, who won numerous awards for his foreign policy and intelligence-gathering skills, who served as assistant to the secretary of defense for space policy and on the Pentagon Defense Science Board and the US Intelligence Board under President Carter, and as a foreign affairs officer and member of the National Security Council under Presidents Nixon, Ford and Reagan, died Nov. 25 in Washington, DC at the age of 72.
Social and Religion
Archbishop Mesrob Ashjian - Longtime leader of the Armenian Apostolic Church of the Eastern United States and Canada, who moved from New York to Armenia in 1998 to care for the elderly and for children orphaned during the war with Azerbaijan in the 1990s and also helped revive monasteries and churches banned for decades under communist rule, who baptized more than 10,000 children in Armenia after the former Soviet republic declared its independence, died Dec. 2 in New York of a heart attack at the age of 62.
Gregory Bryant-Bruce - Boy who's story captured national attention in 1993 when his child's father, Gregory Bryant-Bruce Sr., lost custody after doctors at Vanderbilt University Medical Center said that bleeding around the baby's eyes was evidence that he had been shaken or dropped repeatedly, but in February, 1995 his mother, Cheryl Bryant-Bruce, herself a physician, abducted her son from a state-sponsored foster-care facility in Nashville and rushed him to Emory University's Egleston Children's Hospital in Atlanta for an independent evaluation where doctors there determined his symptoms were from a medical disorder, not child abuse. His mother was arrested, but charges were dropped, and it was ordered that Gregory be returned to his parents. Gregory died Nov. 30 in Belmont, CA from complications related to his rare liver disease known as Alagille's syndrome. He was 10 years old.
Addie Byers - Georgia civil rights activist and educator, who in the 1950's challenged a policy that kept black children out of public libraries, who was awarded the NAACP's Freedom Award in 1985, died Dec. 2 in Savannah, GA at age 97.
Richard Duncan - Texas man who in 1987 murdered elderly couple Ruth & John High in the hopes of getting half of their $500,000 estate from their son, Gary, whom he had had a homosexual relationship with for 20 years, was executed by lethal injection on Dec. 3 in Huntsville, TX at age 61.
June Fieger - Union organizer who as head of the Michigan Federation of Teachers, led the nation's first teacher strike in Hamtramck, Michigan in the 1960's, who is the mother of both 1998 gubernatorial candidate Geoffrey Fieger and vocalist & guitarist of the Knack ("My Sharona") Doug Fieger, died Dec. 1 of cancer in Mission Viejo, CA at age 79.
Catherine Furey - Irish-born New York woman who was thought to be the oldest living Irish person and one of the oldest people in the United States, died Nov. 30 in Smithton, NY at age 110.
Jonathan Luna - Federal prosecutor who was trying the case of Baltimore rapper Deon Lionnel Smith (recorded under the name Papi Jenkinz) and an associate, accused of heroin distribution and running a violent drug ring in part from their Stash House Records studio, who had tentatively reached a plea agreement in the case on Dec. 4 and was scheduled to appear in court on Dec. 5, was found dead in Lancaster County, PA, about 55 miles from Baltimore. He had been repeatedly stabbed, shot then drowned. He was 38 years old.
Robbie Lyons - North Carolina man who in 1993 was mistakenly released from prison after being arrested on numerous counts including armed robbery and larceny, who before the error was discovered, robbed and shot to death storeowner Stephen Wilson Stafford, was executed by lethal injection on Dec. 4 in Raleigh, NC at age 31.
Evelyn Mattern - Minister, author and advocate for the poor in North Carolina who wrote several books including "Why Not Become Fire? Encounters with Women Mystics" and "Blessed are You: The Beatitudes and Our Survival", died Nov. 30 in Philadelphia of lung cancer at age 62.
Ivan Murphy - Texas man who in 1989 while on a drug binge, went to the home of lifelong family friend, Lula Mae Denning, 80, for a visit, but after eating ice cream with her, he beat her to death and stole jewelry from her which he used to buy more drugs, was executed by lethal injection on Dec. 4 in Huntsville, TX at age 38.
Norman Siebold - World War II hero who helped evacuate his fellow Mormon missionaries from Germany in 1939 as the Nazi threat grew and whose story was told in Terry Montague's 2000 book, "Mine Angels Round About", died Nov. 28 in Rupert, ID of an apparent heart attack at age 88.
Joe Smarzik - Minnesota man who gained national notoriety in 1977 when he placed an ad looking for a family to eat Christmas dinner with, which was publicized in the book "Wanted: One Family" by Deanna Edwards, died Nov. 27 in Walnut Grove, MN at age 98.
Zera & Michelle Staheli - Vice President of Shell Oil in charge of natural gas and power in the southern part of South America and his wife, who had moved with their 3 children to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil three months previously from Utah, and who were living in a heavily-guarded, posh condominium, were brutally attacked with an ax or meat cleaver in their bedroom during the night of Nov. 29 while their children slept in other rooms. Zera, 39, died at the scene and Michelle, 34, died of her injuries in Rio on Dec. 4. There are no clues, no murder weapon, no valuables were taken and all the hypotheses of why they were killed look absurd.
Business and Science
Dr. Arnold Capute - Pioneer in the study and treatment of children with developmental disabilities and member of the original staff of the Kennedy Krieger Institute, died Nov. 30 of congestive heart failure in Baltimore. He was 80.
Clark Kerr - A leader of 20th-century American education who is credited with creating the blueprint for public higher education in the United States, who was president of the University of California at Berkeley from 1958-1967 and oversaw the school's massive expansion to accommodate the baby boomers, but who was fired by then-Gov. Ronald Reagan in 1967 for being too soft on student protestors, died in his sleep after complications from a fall on Dec. 1 in El Cerrito, CA at the age of 92.
Dr. John "Jack" Kenney - Pioneer in the study of skin diseases afflicting non-white populations, who was one of the first black doctors trained in dermatology, who headed the dermatology department at Howard University's medical school, and who served as director of the American Academy of Dermatology, died Nov. 29 in Washington, DC of a heart ailment at age 89.
Guy Le Moigne - One of the world's foremost experts on water resource management, who played roles in dam development projects worldwide, who was executive director of the World Water Council, a French-based water policy research institute, and who served as a senior water resources adviser to the World Bank for many years, died Dec. 1 of cancer in Bethesda, MD at age 71.
Walter T. Redmond - President and CEO of Kellogg Co. from 1980 to 1985, who started as an industrial engineer with the cereal company in 1948 and rose through the ranks all the way to its highest office, and who was the only Battle Creek native to serve as Kellogg president other than company founder W.K. Kellogg, died Dec. 2 in Battle Creek, MI at age 80.
Aaron Schreier - Architect who was project director of the World Trade Center's design team, who led a team of young designers who reconciled the vision of WTC designer Minoru Yamasaki with the demand for 10 million square feet of office space, and who in the months following Sept. 11, 2001, appeared in several TV interviews and specials, died Dec. 3 of prostate cancer in Beverly Hills, MI at age 72.
Sylvia Sebastiani - Small-town California girl who took over the family company, Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery, after the death of her husband, August Sebastiani, died Nov. 30 in Sonoma, CA after a heart attack at the age of 87.