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29 Dec 2012

In Memoriam: We say goodbye to those notables who died in 2012

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December 29, 2012 Category: Stateside Posted by:

2012 saw the loss of many icons, in entertainment, politics and journalism; several gone too soon and tragically included superstar Whitney Houston, TV’s Jeffersons star Sherman Hemsley, Sen. Arlen Specter, George McGovern, TV music producing pioneers Don Cornelius, Dick Clark and Hal Jackson; award-winning journalist and 60 Minutes host Mike Wallace and Pulitzer Prize winning writer William Raspberry.


Neil Armstrong (1930-2012)

Astronaut, Explorer, Pilot



Fontella Bass (1940-2012);  ‘60s R&B singer, famous for her song, “Rescue Me.

Maeve Binchy (1940-2012)

Journalist, Author

Griselda Blanco (1943-2012)

Drug Dealer, Murderer, Organized Crime Boss

Ernest Borgnine (1917-2012)

Award-winning Film,Theater,Television actor

Ray Bradbury (1920-2012)

Author, Poet

Don Brinkley (1921-2012)

Television Producer, Screenwriter

Chuck Brown (1936-2012)

Guitarist, Singer

Dave Brubeck (1920-2012)

Songwriter, Pianist



Elizabeth Catlett (1915-2012)


Dick Clark (1929-2012)

Television Personality and producer; and host of American Bandstand

Don Cornelius (1936-2012)

Television Personality, and Producer/founder/host of Soul Train



Richard Dawson (1932-2012)

Film Actor, Television Actor, Comedian, Game Show Host Family Feud

Miguel de la Madrid (1934-2012)

Educator, Economist, World Leader

Herman D. ‘Preacher’ Dennis (1916-2012)  Folk artist

Phyllis Diller (1917-2012)

Film Actress, Comedian, Pianist

Michael Clarke Duncan (1957-2012)

Acclaimed Film Actor, star of ‘The Green Mile.’

Charles Durning (1923-2012)

Celebrated “King of Character Actors” on stage, screen and TV. Appeared in Tootsie, TV’s Evening Shade among his many roles.



Willis Edwards (1946-2012)

Activist & Hollywood branch of the NAACP

Nora Ephron (1941-2012)

 Director, Journalist, Screenwriter



Niles Ford (1959-2012)

Performer, choreographer

Al Freeman, Jr. (1932-2012)

Actor, Chairman & Artistic Director of the Theater Dept. at Howard Univ.



John Gadson (1952-2012)

Veteran reporter for St. Louis’s KTVI 

Barbara Graves (1937-2012)

CFO & Circulation Dir. of Black Enterprise Mag 

Robin Gibb (1949-2012)

Songwriter, Singer, Bee Gees member

Andy Griffith (1926-2012)

TV/stage actor/producer 

Helen Gurley Brown (1922-2012)

Author/Publisher of Cosmopolitan magazine

Rosa Guy (1925-2012)

novelist who wrote for young people about black urban life




Larry Hagman (1931-2012)

Theater Actor, Television Actor, Television Producer, star of “Dallas”, “I Dream of Jeannie.

Marvin Hamlisch (1944-2012)


Major Harris (1947-2012), Former member of the Delfonics & singer died of congestive heart & lung failure.

Levon Helm (1940-2012)

Drummer, Singer

Sherman Hemsley (1938-2012)

Celebrated stage and television actor, played the popular role “George Jefferson,” on 70s TV sitcom, The Jeffersons.

Henry Hill (1943-2012)

Organized Crime Boss; life portrayed in movie, “Goodfellas.”

Celeste Holm (1917-2012)

 Film and stage actress

 Whitney Houston (1963-2012)

 Film Actress, Singer



Hal Jackson (1915-2012)

Radio pioneer

Etta James (1938-2012)

Iconic R&B Singer

Davy Jones (1945-2012)

Television Actor, Singer



Mary Kennedy (1960-2012)


Erica Kennedy (1970-2012)

multi-talented writer

Rodney King (1965-2012)

Jack Klugman (1922-2012) 

Acclaimed stage,screen and TV actor, TV’s Odd Couple, Quincy, M.E.

Alfred Kumalo (1930-2012)

South African photographer who chronicled apartheid brutalities & the rise of Mandela



Byard Lancaster (1942-2012)-Saxophonist & flutist who took part in the wave of free jazz (blues, reggae & Afrobeat) died of cancer on August 23 in Pennsylvania.  

Chris Lighty (1968-2012), hip-hop manager to many successful stars in the music business: Diddy, 50 Cent, LL Cool J and Mariah to name a few. He took his life on August 30. 

Jon Lord (1941-2012), Musician



George McGovern (1922-2012)

American historian, author and U.S. Representative, U.S. Senator, and the Democratic Party presidential nominee in the 1972 presidential election.Russell Means (1939-2012)

Activist, Film Actor

Willie Middlebrook (1957-2012)

Photographer, master technician & storyteller 

Sun Myung Moon (1920-2012)

Business Leader, Religious Leader



Oscar Niemeyer (1907-2012)




Leo O’Brien (1970-2012)

actor, starred in the cult classic ‘The Last Dragon’ 

Johnny Otis (1921-2012)




Joe Paterno (1926-2012)

Legendary Penn State University Coach, Football Player



William Raspberry (1935-2012)

Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist 

Sally Ride (1951-2012)

Educator, Astronaut, Physicist

Jenni Rivera (1969-2012)

Wayne Roberts (1951-2012)

Pioneering ’70s graffiti writer



Vidal Sassoon (1928-2012)


Tony Scott (1944-2012)


Earl Scruggs (1924-2012)


Maurice Sendak (1928-2012)

Illustrator, Author

Ravi Shankar (1920-2012)


Arlen Specter (1930-2012)

Lawyer, U.S. Representative

Donna Summer (1948-2012)

Songwriter, Singer



Emanuel Steward (1944-2012)

Celebrated boxing trainer, worked with Evander Holyfield, Oscar De La Hoya and Michael Moorer among others.



Gore Vidal (1925-2012)

Critic, Author, Playwright



Moses Walker, Jr. (1972-2012)

19-year veteran police officer shot multiple times, after finishing night shift in North Philadelphia.

Mike Wallace (1918-2012)

Radio Personality, award-winning journalist co-host of 60 Minutes.

Doc Watson (1923-2012)

Guitarist, Singer

Kitty Wells (1919-2012)

Songwriter, Singer

Andy Williams (1927-2012)

Singer, Television Personality

Dick Anthony Williams (1934-2012)

Award winning Broadway/theater/TV actor,

Yvette Wilson (1964-2012)

Comedian & actress, starred in TV’s Moesha, and the Movie comedy, “Friday.



Adam Yauch (1964-2012)

Rapper, Beastie Boys member.


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