Shirley Horn, jazz pianist and
singer, dies at 71
Lou Rawls Has Died of Cancer in a Los
Angeles hospital He Was 72
Oct 22, 2005 - Shirley Horn, the
jazz pianist and singer whose
unhurried, breathy style
captured the attention of two
generations of listeners, died
today at age 71, her record
company said in a statement.
She died of complications from diabetes on
Thursday in a Washington, D.C.-area
"I'm not a quitter, I'm a fighter," she told The
Washington Post in late 2004, a few years
after diabetes forced the amputation of her
"I've tried to keep things as level as possible
through this whole thing -- I'm cool. I know
what I have to do: I'm never going to give up
the piano, I'm never going to stop singing till
God says, 'I called your number.' I don't panic,
because I have so much love for what I do."
Lou Rawls quote - "I've gone the full spectrum, from
gospel to blues to jazz to soul to pop. And the
public has accepted what I've done through it all."
Richard Pryor quote - "People talk about how these
are hard times. But hard times was way back. They
didn't even have a year for it. Just called it Hard
Times. And it was dark all the time. I think the sun
came out on Wednesday, and if you didn't have
your ass up early, you missed it."
Friday, Jan 7, 2006 - Lou Rawls, the
velvet-voiced singer who started as a church
choir boy and went on to sell more than 40
million albums in a career that spanned
nearly five decades and a range of genres,
died of cancer Friday. He was 72.
My friend Lou Rawls died at Cedars-Sinai
Medical Center, where he was hospitalized
last month for treatment of lung and brain
cancer, said his publicist, Paul Shefrin.
His wife, Nina, was at his bedside when he
Dec 10, 2005 - Pryor, who had been ill with
multiple sclerosis, died today at an Encino
Hospital near Los Angeles at 7:58 a.m. PT.
Jennifer Lee Pryor tried to revive him at their
home before paramedics arrived and took
him to the hospital, she said.
"He enjoyed life right up until the end," she
said, adding that Pryor had been laughing a
lot and was in good spirits in the two weeks
preceding his death. "At the end, there was a
smile on his face."
Rosa Parks Matriarch of Civil
Rights Dies at 92
NEW YORK -Jan 19, 2006 -
Wilson Pickett, the soul
pioneer best known for
the fiery hits “Mustang
Sally” and “In The
Midnight Hour,” died of
a heart attack (today)
according to his
company. He was 64.
Gordon Parks Dead At 93
Rosa Parks quote - "“At the time I was arrested I had
no idea it would turn into this,” Mrs. Parks said 30
years later. “It was just a day like any other day. The
only thing that made it significant was that the
masses of the people joined in.”
New York NY March 7,
2006 - Gordon Parks,
who captured the
struggles and triumphs
of black America as a
photographer for Life
magazine and then
first major black director
with "The Learning
Tree" and the hit
"Shaft," died today in
NYC, a family member
said. He was 93.
Oct 24, 2005 - Rosa Parks whose refusal to
give up her bus seat to a white man sparked
the modern civil rights movement, died
Monday evening, Oct 24th. She was 92.
Mrs. Parks died at her home during the
evening of natural causes, with close friends
by her side, said Gregory Reed, an attorney
who represented her for the past 15 years.
Gordon Parks hams it
up for fellow
following a portrait
session featuring him
and close to 100 other
Harlem in 2002.
Chris Tuthill of the management company
Talent Source said Pickett had been
suffering from health problems for the past
“He did his part. It was a great ride, a great
trip, I loved him and I’m sure he was well-
loved, and I just hope that he’s given his
props,” Michael Wilson Pickett, the fourth of
the singer’s six children, told WRC-TV in
Washington after his death.
Shelley Winters Dies At 85
B HILLS, CA., Jan. 14, 2006 -
Shelley Winters, the
forceful, outspoken star
who graduated from
blond bombshell parts to
Academy Awards as
Parks had been receiving radiation treatment
for cancer, the Kansas City Star reported. His
son and daughter were with him when he
Parks was born Nov. 30, 1912, in Fort Scott,
Kan., the youngest of 15 children. In his 1990
autobiography, "Voices in the Mirror," he
remembered it as a world of racism and
poverty, but also a world where his parents
gave their children love, discipline and
supporting actress in "The Diary of Anne
Frank" ""A Patch of Blue" and "Cleopatra
Jones" has died. She was 85.
Winters died of heart failure early Saturday
at The Rehabilitation Centre of Beverly Hills,
her publicist Dale Olson said. She had
been hospitalized in October after suffering
a heart attack.
The actress sustained her long career by
repeatedly reinventing herself. Starting as a
nightclub chorus girl, advanced to
supporting roles in New York plays, then
became famous as a Hollywood sex
A devotee of the Actors Studio, she switched
to serious roles as she matured. Her
Oscars were for her portrayal of mothers.
Still working well into her 70s, she had a
recurring role as Roseanne's grandmother
on the 1990s TV show "Roseanne."
Actress Rosetta LeNoire Dead At 90
landlord Ralph Furley on "Three's
Company," has died. He was 81.
Knotts died today of pulmonary and
respiratory complications at a Los Angeles
Griffith, who remained close friends with
Knotts, said he had a brilliant comedic mind
and wrote some of the show's best scenes.
"Don was a small man...but everything else
about him was large: his mind, his
expressions," Griffith said, "Don was
special. "There's nobody like him."
Born Jesse Donald Knotts in West Virginia,
Knotts started show business as a
ventriloquist and became a comedian while
in the Army. His first big break was "No Time
For Sergeants," which starred his future
partner, Andy Griffith
March 19, 2002 -
who was directed
by Orson Welles
in a landmark,
of "Macbeth" in
the 1930s and
Grandma Winslow on the television comedy
"Family Matters," died on Sunday in Teaneck,
N.J., after a long illness. She was 90.
Known to TV audiences for her long-running
role as Grandma Winslow, LeNoire founded
the Amas Repertory Theatre in New York in
The nonprofit organization, dedicated to
developing musicals and new talent,
produced such popular shows as
"Bojangles" and Tony nominee "Bubbling
She also received the National Medal of Arts
Born in New York City, LeNoire took music
lessons from legendary jazzman Eubie
Blake. By age 15, she was a chorus girl
working with her godfather, dancing great
Bill "Bojangles" Robinson.
She made her Broadway debut in "The Hot
Mikado" in 1939, going on to appear in such
shows as "A Streetcar Named Desire," "The
Sunshine Boys" and "Lost In The Stars."
LeNoire also co-starred in the film version of
"Anna Lucasta" with Sammy Davis Jr. and
Eartha Kitt and appeared in such TV series
as "Search for Tomorrow," "The Guiding
Light" and "Gimme a Break."
She played Grandma Winslow on "Family
Matters' from 1989 to 1997.
Billy Preston Dead At 59 From Kidney Failure
June 6, 2006 - Billy
Preston, the exuberant
keyboardist who landed
dream gigs with the
Beatles and the Rolling
Stones and enjoyed his
Clerow Wilson aka Comedian Flip Wilson
Dead at 64
series of hit singles, including "Outta Space"
and "Nothing From Nothing," died today at 59.
Preston's longtime manager, Joyce Moore,
said Preston had been in a coma since
November in a care facility and was taken to
a hospital in Scottsdale Saturday after his
Preston had battled chronic kidney failure,
and he received a kidney transplant in 2002.
But the kidney failed and he has been on
dialysis ever since, Moore said earlier this
November 26,1998 - In 1970's on the
nation's TV screens, Flip Wilson put on a wig
and a minidress then became Geraldine,
who screeched: ``What you see is what you
He was born Dec 8, 1933 in Jersey City, NY
raised in foster homes and quit school at
age 16..He died today from liver cancer in his
Malibu home with his daughter Micheel by
his side..he was 64
Wilson effectively retired from the
entertainment business after the failed
sitcom to raise his children out of the
Wilson said in 1993 he was enjoying the
good life, which included recreational and
spiritual passions ranging from hot-air
ballooning and long ocean cruises to
studying the works of philosopher Khalil
Gibran, author of "The Prophet.
He is survived by sons Kevin and David, and
daughters Stacey, Tamara and Michelle.
Plans for a memorial service were pending.
June Pointer Dead at 52
April 11, 2006 - She was
the youngest member of
the singing Pointer
Sisters, whose songs
include "I'm So Excited",
"Slow Hand" and "Jump
(for My Love)"
The Pointer family says June, who was 52,
died of cancer Tuesday at the Santa Monica
University of California, Los Angeles, Medical
Center. She had been hospitalized since late
February; the type of cancer has not been
The family says June died "in the arms of her
sisters, Ruth and Anita and her brothers,
Aaron and Fritz, by her side... Although her
sister, Bonnie, was unable to be present, she
was with her in spirit."
The sisters, along with their two older
brothers, grew up singing in the choir of an
Oakland church where their parents were
Aaron Spelling Buried
In Private Service
Beverly Hills, CA June 27, 2006 -
A private burial service was
held Sunday for TV mogul
Aaron Spelling at Hillside
Memorial Park in Culver City,
Calif. In attendance were
Spelling's widow Candy, son
Randy, daughter Tori, brother
Danny, publicist Kevin Sasaki
Mike Douglas Dies On His Birthday
Legendary Talk Show Host Was 81
Palm Beach, FL August 11, 2006 - Mike Douglas,
whose affable personality and singing talent
earned him 21 years as a television talk
show host, died today on his 81st birthday.
He died at 5:30 a.m. in a Palm Beach
Gardens hospital, said his wife, Genevieve
Douglas. She wasn't sure of the cause, but
said he had been admitted (yesterday)
Douglas' afternoon show aired from 1961 to
1982. "People still believe 'The Mike
Douglas Show' was a talk show, and I never
correct them, but I don't think so," Douglas
said in his 1999 memoir, "I'll Be Right Back:
Memories of TV's Greatest Talk Show."
"It was really a music show, with a whole lot
of talk and laughter in between numbers."
Douglas did about 6,000 shows, most 90
minutes long, and estimated that at its peak,
the syndicated show was seen in about 230
He was undoubtedly the greatest producer of
popular television during the 1970s, 1980s
and 1990s," Joan Collins, who starred in
Spelling's hit Dynasty, said Monday. "I shall
always be grateful to him for insisting I play
the role of Alexis Carrington on Dynasty."
Heather Locklear said Monday she was sad
to hear of Spelling's death. "He called me his
lucky penny," she said, "but I am the lucky
one because he graced me with his
encouragement and talent."
Spelling's actress daughter Tori made peace
with her father before his death. "I'm grateful I
recently had the opportunity to reconcile with
my father," she told PEOPLE, "and most
grateful we had the chance to tell each other
we loved one another before he passed
"It's a true blessing to have had a parent that
loved me unconditionally. He had a heart as
big as his talent and today, along with many
others, I mourn his loss. He was a great man
and even better father."
Former Texas Gov. Ann Richards, 73, dies
Austin, TX Sep 13, 2006 -
Former Gov. Ann Richards,
the witty and flamboyant
Democrat who went from
homemaker to national
political celebrity, died
Wednesday night after a
battle with cancer, a family
spokeswoman said. She was 73.
She died at home surrounded by her family,
the spokeswoman said. Richards was
found to have esophageal cancer in March
and underwent chemotherapy treatments.
The silver-haired, silver-tongued Richards
said she entered politics to help others --
especially women and minorities who were
often ignored by Texas' male-dominated
' I'd like them to remember me by saying,
'She opened government to everyone,' "
Richards said shortly before leaving office in
She was governor for one term, losing her
re-election bid to Republican George W.
Los Angeles Oct 23, 2006 -
Jane Wyatt, the lovely,
serene actress who for
six years on "Father
Knows Best" was one of
TV's favorite moms, has
died, her son Christoph-
er Ward said Sunday.
She was 96.
Jane Wyatt fixes the
hair ribbon for
Wood in Hollywood,
in this Oct. 1949
JANE WYATT Of Father Knows Best
Dead at 96
Wyatt died Friday in her sleep of natural
causes at her Bel-Air home, according to
publicist Meg McDonald. She experienced
health problems since suffering a stroke at
85, but her mind was sharp until her death,
her son said.
Wyatt recently appeared on Desperate
Housewives Season Two DVD.
New York Nov 8, 2006 - Veteran
60 Minutes correspondent
Ed Bradley died Thursday at
Mount Sinai Hospital in
Manhattan of complications from leukemia.
Bradley joined the staff of the venerable
news magazine 26 years ago. His
consummate skills as a broadcast
journalist and his distinctive body of work
were recognized with numerous awards,
including 19 Emmys, the latest for a
segment that reported the reopening of the
50-year-old racial murder case of Emmett
Bradley grew up in a tough section of
Philadelphia, was wounded while covering
the Vietnam War and later became the first
black White House correspondent for CBS
News. He was a man who broke down
Gerald Levert Dead At 40
NEW YORK Nov 11, 2006 -
Gerald Levert, the fiery singer
of passionate R&B love
songs and the son of O'Jays
singer Eddie Levert, died
Friday. He was 40.
Levert's family released a statement asking
"As everybody knows, Gerald was a man
who loved and breathed music. To his family
and friends he was a man of strong
character, who had an infectious personality
and a zest for life. For his fans, his greatest
love was touching the hearts and souls of all
people through his music. At this very difficult
time, we thank you for your prayers and hope
you will understand our need for privacy".
Patti LaBelle hopes to sing at Levert's
"It's very sad. He was an amazing talent,
friend and fellow R&B singer Will Downing
said. "Gerald was a hard worker. He would
go out there and do his thing, and be in
places where the folks were. He would touch
the people, and that's really what it's all
about." Levert had four children.
Former President Ford dies at 93
RANCHO MIRAGE, CA Dec 26,
2006 -- Former President
Gerald Ford, who became
president in 1974 after the
resignation of Richard
Nixon, died Tuesday at age
93. Ford, the oldest surviving former U.S.
president, died peacefully at 6:45 p.m. PT
(9:45 p.m. ET) Tuesday at his home in
Rancho Mirage, California, according to a
statement from his office.
The cause of death was not given. A
statement from Ford's wife, Betty, said: "My
family joins me in sharing the difficult news
that Gerald Ford, our beloved husband,
father, grandfather and great-grandfather
has passed away at 93 years of age. His
life was filled with love of God, his family
and his country."
James Brown, the 'Godfather of Soul,' dies
on Christmas Day at 73
Atlanta Dec 25, 2006 - James
Brown died early Christmas
Day, at Atlanta's Emory
Crawford Long Hospital of
congestive heart failure, his
agent said. He was 73.
"The most difficult thing is for me to stand
here without him. We were a team," Charles
Bobbit, Brown's personal manager, told
Pausing to fight back tears, Bobbit said he
was at Brown's bedside when he died.
Brown told him, "I'm going away tonight."
Then he took three long, quiet breaths, and
closed his eyes, Bobbit said. Brown was in
Atlanta for a dental appointment when he fell
ill and was admitted to the hospital over the
weekend for pneumonia.
"It appears what happened is that he did die
of a heart attack as a result of his
pneumonia," the singer's agent Frank
Copsidas told reporters.
January 13, 2007 - Internationally
renowned tenor saxophonist
and composer Michael
Brecker, an 11-time Grammy
Award winner, died of
leukemia on January 13 at age 57. Brecker
was afflicted with MDS, myelodysplastic
syndrome, a bone marrow disorder.
Although he was very sick, Brecker completed
a final album just two weeks ago, which will be
released on Heads Up International in the
spring of 2007. The as-yet-untitled recording
includes pianists Herbie Hancock and Brad
Mehldau, guitarist Pat Metheny, drummer Jack
DeJohnette and bassist John Patitucci.
Brecker is survived by his wife, Susan; his
children, Jessica and Sam; his brother, Randy;
and his sister, Emily Brecker Greenberg.
Memorial services are planned.
Brecker is survived by his wife, Susan; his
children, Jessica and Sam; his brother, Randy;
and his sister, Emily Brecker Greenberg.
Memorial services are planned.
Mike Evans of TV's The Jefferson's Dead
Dec 14, 2006 - Mike Evans, 57, an
actor best known for his role as
Lionel Jefferson in the TV
sitcoms "All in the Family" and
"The Jeffersons," died of throat
cancer Dec. 14 at his mother's
home in Twentynine Palms, his
niece Dr. Chrystal Evans said.
Tamara Dobson Cleopatra Jones Is Dead
Oct 2, 2006 - Tamara
Dobson, is dead at age:59
She stood 6 feet 2 inches,
eventually became a
fashion model for Vogue
Magazine. She made a
few films in Hollywood but
is best known for her roles in the
Blaxploitation films, Cleopatra Jones (1973)
and Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold
(1975). Tamara died October 2, 2006 of
complications from pneumonia and multiple
Nov 17, 2006 - Ruth Brown
whose recordings of "Teardrops
in My Eyes," "5-10-15 Hours"
and "(Mama) He Treats Your
Daughter Mean" shot her to
rhythm-and-blues stardom in
the 1950s, has died at 78.
Brown, who later in life won a Grammy and
a Tony, died Friday of complications from a
stroke and heart attack at a Las Vegas-area
hospital, said Lindajo Loftus, a publicist for
the Rhythm & Blues Foundation, which
Brown helped establish.
Brown's soulful voice produced dozens of
hits for Atlantic Records, cementing the
fledgling record label's reputation as an
R&B powerhouse. Trained in a church choir
in her hometown of Portsmouth, Va., Brown
sang a range of style from jazz to
gospel-blues in such hits as "So Long" and
"Teardrops in My Eyes."
She later crossed over into rock 'n' roll with
some success with "Lucky Lips" and "This
Little Girl's Gone Rockin'," a song she
co-wrote with Bobby Darin.
But as R&B and rock 'n' roll fell out of style in
the late 1950s, Brown and her musical
contemporaries were forced into retirement.
She spent most of the 1960s raising her
two sons alone and earning a living as a
maid, school bus driver and teacher.
May 22, 2006 - Katherine Dunham
is dead at age 96. Famed dancer
and choreographer Katherine
Dunham died May 21, at the age
of 96. She once pressed a cultural
crusade that some credited with
Katherine Dunham Dead at 96
putting gang leaders in leotards. At the time,
she called on everyone to share her love for the
arts and "something more constructive than
Dunham died Sunday at the assisted living
facility in New York where she lived, according
to Charlotte Ottley, executive liaison for the
organization that preserves her artistic estate.
During her career, Dunham choreographed
"Aida" for the Metropolitan Opera and musicals
such as "Cabin in the Sky" for Broadway. She
also appeared in several films, including
"Stormy Weather" and "Carnival of Rhythm."
In her later years, she depended on grants and
the kindness of celebrities, artists and former
students to pay for her day-to-day expenses.
Will Smith and Harry Belafonte were among
those who helped her catch up on bills, Ottley
"She didn't end up on the street though she
was one step from it," Ottley said. "She has
been on the edge and survived it all with dignity
Dunham was married to theater designer John
Thomas Pratt for 49 years before his death in
May 11, 2006 - Two time World
Heavyweight Champioin Floyd
Patterson is dead at age 71.
Floyd Patterson, who came
back from an embarrassing
loss to become the first boxer to
regain the heavyweight title,
Boxing Champ Floyd Patterson Dead At 71
died 5/11/06. Patterson quote: "They said I
was the fighter who got knocked down the
most, but I also got up the most."
Faynard Nicholas Dead at 91
Jan 25, 2006 - Fayard Nicholas,
who with his brother Harold
wowed the tap dancing world with
their astonishing athleticism and
inspired generations of dancers,
from Fred Astaire to Savion
Glover, has died. He was 91.
Nicholas died Tuesday at his home from
pneumonia and other complications of a stroke,
his son Tony Nicholas said.
Coretta Scott King Dead at 78
Jan 31, 2006 - Coretta Scott
King, who worked to keep her
husband’s dream alive with a
chin-held-high grace and
serenity that made her a
powerful symbol of the Rev.
Martin Luther King Jr.’s creed
of brotherhood and non-
violence, died Tuesday. She was 78.
King died in her sleep during the night at
an alternative medicine clinic in Mexico,
her family said.
In a statement released Tuesday, the King
family said she in Mexico “for observation
and consideration of treatment for ovarian
cancer. She was considered terminal by
physicians in the United States. Mrs. King
and her family wanted to explore other
Jan 14, 2007 - Alice Coltrane, the jazz
performer and composer who was
inextricably linked with the
improvisations of her late husband,
legendary saxophonist John
Coltrane, has died. She was 69.
Coltrane died Friday at West Hills Hospital and
Medical Center in West Hills, according to an
announcement from the family's publicist. She
had been in frail health for some time and died
of respiratory failure.
Roscoe Lee Browne Dead at 81
April 11, 2007 - Actor Roscoe Lee
Browne, whose rich voice and
dignified bearing brought him an
Emmy Award and a Tony
nomination, has died. He was 81.
Browne died in Los Angeles early
Wednesday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
after a long battle with cancer, said Alan
Nierob, a spokesman for the family. Browne's
career included classic theater to TV cartoons.
He also was a poet and a former world-class
Billy Henderson of The Spinners Dead at 67
February 2, 2007 - Billy Henderson of
60's R&B band The Spinners has
died from complications to diabetes
in Florida. Henderson founded the
original group as the Domingoes in
Detroit in 1957. In 1961, they he
changed the name to The Spinners.
By the 70s, The Spinners had become one of
the hottest soul groups in the USA. The hits
included 'I'll Be Around', 'Rubberband Man'
and 'Working My Way Back To You'.
Henderson was with the band until 2004
when he was unceremoniously dismissed
after suing the corporation.
Percy Rodrigues Dead at 89
September 17, 2007 - Percy
Rodrigues' role as a
neurosurgeon in the 1960s
television series "Peyton Place"
broke ground because he was
cast as an authority figure when
relatively few black actors were
given such parts died on Sept. 6 at his home in
Indio, Calif.. He was 89. The cause was kidney
failure, said his wife, Karen Cook-Rodrigues.
Mr. Rodrigues, who was of African and
Portuguese descent, was born in Montreal.
From the 1950s through the 1980s, he acted in
more than 80 film and television productions,
including the 1979 miniseries "Roots: The Next
Generation." One of his most iconic roles was
that of the narrator of the "Jaws" trailers in 1975.
Yolanda King Dead At Age 51
Oldest Child Of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Carried On Parents' Legacy With Her
ATLANTA, Ga., May 16, 2007 -
Yolanda Denise King, 51,
Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
eldest child, pursued her
father's dream of racial
harmony through drama and motivational
speaking May 15. She appeared in a
number of films, including a role as civil
rights martyr Medgar Evers' daughter in
"Ghosts of Mississippi," and as Rosa
Parks in the 1978 television miniseries
"King." King also ran a film production
company. King, who was 12 when her
father was slain, learned of his death
from a television news bulletin while
washing dishes at her family's home in
A spokesman for the King Center says
the family does not know the cause of
death but suspects it might have been a
The death comes just over a year after the
death of her mother, Coretta Scott King, a
civil rights leader in her own right, at the
age of 78, of complications from ovarian
cancer, and after a battle with the effects
from a stroke.
Zola Taylor Dead at 69
April 30, 2007 - Zola Taylor, who broke
gender barriers as the first female
member of the 1950s R&B group
The Platters and later became
entangled in a public soap opera as
one of three women claiming to be
pop idol Frankie Lymon's widow died today
from pneumonia, following a series of
strokes. She was 69. Zola Taylor was
portrayed by Halle Berry in the 1998
historical film Why Do Fools Fall in Love.
Calvin Lockhart Dead at 72
April 4, 2007 - Calvin Lockhart, an actor
who won acclaim for his roles as
underworld figures in 1970s
"blaxploitation" films, has died.
Lockhart, who was buried in Nassau
on 4/7/07, died 3/29/07 of complications from
a stroke, his wife Jennifer Miles-Lockhart said