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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, April 9, 2016

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Merle Haggard, country music starEsmael Adibi, Chapman University economic forecasterArthur Anderson, voice of Lucky the Leprechaun in 'Lucky Charms' commercialsBarbara Anderson, helped to win tax cuts in MassachusettsErik Bauersfeld, actor who voiced 'Star Wars' character Admiral AckbarJoe Freeman Britt, America's 'deadliest DA'Alma Brown, widow of Ron Brown, Bill Clinton's secretary of commerceDuane R. Clarridge, CIA operativeTony Conrad, experimental filmmaker, musician, and artistSebe Dale Jr., retired Mississippi chancery judgeArchie Dees, '50s Indiana University basketball starFrank Denholm, US congressman from South DakotaStan Drobac, Michigan State tennis coachBob Ellis, Australian author and journalistRoman Gribbs, former mayor of DetroitWilliam Hamilton, 'New Yorker' cartoonistLeon Haywood, R&B singer-songwriterDr. Charlers Hirsch, headed NYC medical examiner's office during and after 9/11 attacksVladimir Kagan, furniture designerJoel Kurtzman, economist and researcherDaisy Lewellyn, star of 'Blood, Sweat & Heels' reality seriesRobert MacCrate, NYC lawyer who consulted on My Lai massacreCesare Maldini, Italian soccer player and coachCarlo Mastrangelo, left, original member of Dion & the BelmontsJoe Medicine Crow, Native American historianGetatchew Mekurya, Ethiopian saxophonistBruce Merrill, Arizona political scientist and pollsterE. M. Nathanson, author of 'The Dirty Dozen'Joe Patten, 'Phantom of the Fox' Theatre in AtlantaOgden Mills Phipps, financier and owner and breeder of thoroughbred racehorsesMike Sandlock, oldest former big league ballplayerMoslemuddin Sarkar, Bangladesh man imprisoned for 15 years in PakistanPhilip Scheffler, top executive behind CBS's '60 Minutes'Jules Schelvis, survivor of Sobibor death campWill Smith, former New Orleans Saints playerMarva Smith Battle-Bey, LA urban planning expertMurray Wier, first Iowa basketball All-AmericanC. Clifton Young, US congressman, Nevada state legislator, and state Supreme Court justice

Art and Literature

Tony Conrad (76) experimental filmmaker, avant-garde musician, and artist who in the ‘60s was a central figure in a Lower Manhattan art movement. Conrad's early musical compositions, like “Four Violins” (1964), were high-volume sustained drones. His first film, The Flicker (1966), created a pulsating stroboscopic effect with alternating black and white frames; it was preceded by a warning that the film could induce epileptic seizures in certain spectators and that audience members remained in the theater at their own risk. Even harder to watch was his Yellow Movie (1973) series, canvases painted with black-bordered white screens that, over time, eventually turned yellow. He died of prostate cancer in Cheektowaga, New York, near Buffalo, on April 9, 2016.

William Hamilton (76) cartoonist whose work for the New Yorker over more than 50 years was known for skewering the wealthy and the powerful. Hamilton, who also wrote novels and plays, began his career with the New Yorker in 1965 and was still working there at his death. His cartoons—densely drawn in a style more realistic than cartoonish—were distinctive. The cartoon above depicts a rich girl showing her new boyfriend around her palatial home. “Don't waste time on Daddy,” she says. “Mummy's the money.” Hamilton was killed in a car crash in Lexington, Kentucky on April 8, 2016.

Vladimir Kagan (88) one of the 20th century’s most successful furniture designers. German-born Kagan's serpentine sofa, perhaps the best known of all his creations, is an armless, curvilinear swoosh of a thing, often upholstered in velvet. He was selected to create furniture for the Monsanto House of the Future at Disneyland, a giant block of white fiberglass, which from 1957–67 offered visitors a peek at what life might look like someday, complete with microwave ovens and floor-to-ceiling windows, the kind that have become a mainstay of contemporary architecture. He died of a heart attack in Palm Beach, Florida on April 7, 2016.

E. M. Nathanson (88) author whose best-selling 1965 novel The Dirty Dozen became the basis for one of the most enduring, if preposterous, World War II movies to come out of Hollywood. The title referred to a collective refusal to bathe or shave during training. The company in the novel did bear a resemblance to a group known as the Filthy 13, a band of rambunctious, authority-defying paratroopers who were far better known for drinking than for washing up, were in and out of the stockade, and landed behind German lines just before the invasion of Normandy. But they were not the murderers, rapists, and borderline madmen depicted by Nathanson in his book. He died in Laguna Niguel, California on April 5, 2016.

Business and Science

Dr. Charles Hirsch (79) head of the New York medical examiner's office for more than 20 years (1989–2013) whose staff helped to identify the remains of 9/11 victims. Hirsch rushed to the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 and was hit by falling debris as one of the twin towers collapsed. He and several aides worked to create a temporary morgue at the lower Manhattan site. He continued to oversee the medical examiner's office as pathologists worked for years to identify the remains of the more than 2,000 victims. When Hirsch retired, the city named the Charles S. Hirsch Center for Forensic Sciences, believed to be the largest public DNA crime laboratory in the nation, in his honor. He died in New York City on April 8, 2016.

Joel Kurtzman (68) economist who calculated the impact of globalization and projected the crash of domestic markets but capped his career in 2014 by predicting a “Second American Century” of unimaginable prosperity. Kurtzman was among the first economists to flag the Latin American debt crisis in the ‘90s. He was so wary about business being buffeted by outside forces that he was credited with coining the term “economic headwinds.” A former managing senior fellow at the nonpartisan Milken Institute, an economic research firm, Kurtzman wrote, cowrote, or edited more than 20 books, including The Death of Money, which forecast the fragility of the digital network that replaced paper currency. He died of cancer in Concord, Massachusetts on April 6, 2016.


Esmael Adibi (63) Chapman University professor and a respected economic forecaster. Adibi was known as an expert who made economic complexities comprehensible—and even funny. During Chapman's annual economic forecasts, one of the longest-running in the US, he would joke about how the economy, like his hairline, was entering a recession; also pointed out the inflation in his stomach and depression in his facial expression. Adibi died of a stroke in Orange, California on April 8, 2016.


Joe Freeman Britt (80) North Carolina prosecutor who was called the US's “deadliest DA” for his success at winning death sentences. As district attorney for Robeson and Scotland Counties from 1974–88, Britt oversaw cases that led to more than 40 death sentences. Only two of the defendants were executed—appeals court rulings led to many altered sentences, and some suspects were later exonerated—but his courtroom record ranked him at one point among the country’s most prolific advocates for capital punishment. He died in Lumberton, North Carolina on April 6, 2016.

Sebe Dale Jr. (94) retired Mississippi chancery judge. Dale retired on New Year's Eve 2010 after 42 years on the bench, 32 of that as chancellor of the 10th Chancery District, which includes Forrest, Lamar, Marion, Pearl River, and Perry counties. He was a member of the Mississippi Judicial College Board of Governors for 22 years, 18 of that as chairman; a member of the State Penitentiary board for eight years and chairman of the Conference of Chancery Judges and the Judicial Advisory Study Committee; and president of the Marion County Bar Association. He died in Columbia, Mississippi on April 5, 2016.

Robert MacCrate (94) lawyer who served as a special civilian counsel on an Army panel investigating the 1968 My Lai massacre in Vietnam. MacCrate also oversaw a landmark report by the American Bar Association in 1992 calling for an overhaul of legal education. He died in Plandome, Long Island, New York on April 6, 2016.

C. Clifton Young (93) former Nevada Supreme Court justice who also was a member of the US Congress and the Nevada Legislature. Young attended Harvard Law School before being elected to the US House of Representatives in 1952, serving two terms there as a Republican. He was in the Nevada state Senate from 1966–80, then joined the Nevada Supreme Court in ’85, retiring in 2002 after 18 years on the bench. He died in Reno, Nevada on April 3, 2016.

News and Entertainment

Arthur Anderson (93) actor who gave a voice to cereal mascot Lucky the Leprechaun in TV commercials for 30 years. Anderson stopped singing that Lucky Charms are “magically delicious” in 1992. He started in the theater at age 10 and later acted on radio shows. He also appeared on Broadway with Orson Welles in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, in the movies Midnight Cowboy and Woody Allen’s Zelig, and on TV’s Law & Order. He died in New York City on April 9, 2016.

Erik Bauersfeld (93) character actor who turned three words from a minor acting role—“It’s a trap!”—into one of the most beloved lines of the Star Wars series. Bauersfeld stayed in radio for much of his life. He stumbled into the Star Wars series while working on a radio project at Lucasfilm and ended up voicing the roles of both the rebellion’s Admiral Ackbar and Jabba the Hutt’s ghostly steward Bib Fortuna in Return of the Jedi (1983). Admiral Ackbar also appeared in The Force Awakens. Despite limited screen time, the character with a large domed head and fishlike eyes was a Star Wars fan favorite. Bauersfeld died in Berkeley, California on April 3, 2016.

Bob Ellis (73) Australian author, journalist, and speechwriter for the center-left Labor Party. Ellis's accomplishments include the screenplay for the acclaimed 1978 Australian movie Newsprint and the autobiographical ‘92 movie The Nostradamus Kid. He wrote 19 books including the best-selling Goodbye Jerusalem that was reprinted in paperback after then-conservative government ministers Tony Abbot—who later became prime minister—and Peter Costello sued for defamation. Ellis died of liver cancer in Sydney, Australia on April 3, 2016.

Merle Haggard (79) country music giant who rose from poverty and prison to international fame through his songs about outlaws, underdogs, and an abiding sense of national pride in such hits as “Okie from Muskogee” and “Sing Me Back Home. A masterful guitarist, fiddler, songwriter, and singer, the Country Music Hall of Famer recorded for more than 40 years, releasing dozens of albums and No. 1 hits. Along with fellow California country star Buck Owens, Haggard was a founder of the twangy Bakersfield Sound, a direct contrast to the smooth, string-laden country records popular in Nashville, Tennessee in the ‘60s. In his youth, Haggard served three years in San Quentin for burglarizing a cafe during a drunken spree; his criminal record was erased by then-Gov. Ronald Reagan, who pardoned him in 1972. The country icon had kept up an ambitious touring schedule, but pneumonia in both lungs had forced him to cancel several shows this year. He died on his 79th birthday of pneumonia that he had been battling for months, in Palo Cedro, California on April 6, 2016.

Leon Haywood (74) rhythm-and-blues singer-songwriter and producer whose 1975 single “I Want'a Do Something Freaky to You” was famously sampled by Dr. Dre and others. Haywood's other hits included “It's Got to Be Mellow,” ''Keep It in the Family,” and “Don't Push It, Don't Force It.” He began his career as a blues musician performing with the likes of Guitar Slim and Big Jay McNeely before achieving success in the '60s–'80s in the soul, R&B, and funk genres. He died in his sleep in Los Angeles, California on April 5, 2016.

Daisy Lewellyn (36) star of Bravo's Blood, Sweat & Heels reality series. Lewellyn was diagnosed in February 2014 with stage-three bile duct cancer, a rare cancer affecting the liver, and underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatments. She carried on with her life and was open about fighting the disease, including on the reality show, which follows the personal lives and careers of a group of New York women. Part of the fashion industry for 15 years, Lewellyn had worked at fashion and lifestyle magazines and was the author of Never Pay Retail Again. She died in Los Angeles, California on April 8, 2016.

Carlo Mastrangelo (78) original member of Dion & the Belmonts, whose baritone vocals undergirded the group’s harmonies on a string of doo-wop hits like “No One Knows“ and “A Teenager in Love.” Mastrangelo grew up in a mostly Italian neighborhood around Arthur Avenue in the Bronx. He played drums, wrote songs, and sang, often on street corners or in subway stations, with his Roosevelt High School classmates Angelo D’Aleo and Fred Milano (d. 2012). They formed the Belmonts in the mid-‘50s. Dion DiMucci, another boy from the neighborhood, joined the group as lead tenor in 1957; in 1958 they released their first hit, “I Wonder Why.” DiMucci left the group in 1960 to pursue a solo career as Dion. Mastrangelo died of cancer in Tampa Bay, Florida on April 4, 2016.

Getatchew Mekurya (81) saxophonist with a full-throated style who worked predominantly in Ethiopia for decades before being embraced by a worldwide audience. Mekurya had an imposing sound and presence, blowing in gusts with a quavering vibrato. He found renown outside his native country after one of his albums from the early ‘70s, Negus of Ethiopian Sax, was released on CD in 2003 as part of the popular world-music reissue series Éthiopiques. His rediscovery led to collaborations with musicians from far beyond his home turf. Mekurya died of an infection in his legs as a result of diabetes, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on April 4, 2016.

Philip Scheffler (85) top executive behind the scenes at the CBS newsmagazine 60 Minutes until his retirement in 2003. Scheffler became senior producer of the show in 1980, essentially serving as right-hand man to founding executive producer Don Hewitt. He had the day-to-day responsibility of guiding producers and reporters and was eventually named executive editor. He died in New York City on April 7, 2016.

Politics and Military

Barbara Anderson (73) longtime executive director of Citizens for Limited Taxation who successfully lobbied for tax cuts in Massachusetts. Anderson was remembered for backing Proposition 2½, which capped property tax increases to 2.5 of fair market value. It overwhelmingly passed in November 1980, less than four months after Anderson took the helm at CLT in Marblehead. She died of leukemia in Boston, Massachusetts on April 8, 2016.

Alma Brown (76) widow of Ron Brown (d. 1996), secretary of commerce under President Bill Clinton. Ron and Alma Brown were known as longtime allies and defenders of Clinton. Alma was a civic leader in Washington who advocated on behalf of vulnerable children and rural women through organizations including the National Black Child Development Institute, the National Council of Negro Women, and the National Urban League, for which she was board vice chairman. She died in Washington, DC, 20 years to the day after her husband was killed in a plane crash while on a trade mission to Croatia, on April 3, 2016.

Duane R. ('Dewey') Clarridge (83) American spy who helped to found the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center, was indicted and later pardoned for his role in the Iran-contra scandal, and resumed his intelligence career in his late 70s as head of a private espionage operation in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Known by his nickname, Dewey, Clarridge delighted in the role of rogue and was a champion of the CIA’s clandestine service. He often bragged to other CIA officers about the brilliant ideas he had conceived while drinking the night before. He died in Leesburg, Virginia from complications of laryngeal and esophageal cancer, one week before his 84th birthday, on April 9, 2016.

Frankie Denholm (92) longtime attorney who represented South Dakota as a US representative in the ‘70s. Denholm grew up in Scotland Township in western Day County. He graduated from South Dakota State University and was a sheriff and an FBI agent before earning a law degree from the University of South Dakota and entering private practice. The Democrat served four years in the US House starting in 1971 but lost his bid for a third term when he was defeated by political newcomer Larry Pressler in ’74. Denholm died in Brookings, South Dakota on April 7, 2016.

Roman Gribbs (90) former mayor of Detroit. Gribbs served one term as mayor and didn’t seek reelection in 1973. Before winning election in 1969, he was an assistant prosecutor and sheriff. He became a judge after leaving the mayor’s office and served on the Michigan appeals court for 20 years. During his only term as mayor, Gribbs worked with Henry Ford 2nd and others to build the Renaissance Center, a landmark building along the Detroit River. He died in Northville, Michigan on April 5, 2016.

Bruce Merrill (78) Arizona political scientist and pollster. The Arizona native was a professor at Arizona State University for nearly 40 years. Merrill regularly conducted opinion surveys of Arizona voters and was a frequent commentator on public affairs. He died of stomach cancer in Phoenix, Arizona on April 9, 2016.

C. Clifton Young (93) former Nevada Supreme Court justice who also was a member of the US Congress and the Nevada Legislature. Young attended Harvard Law School before being elected to the US House of Representatives in 1952, serving two terms there as a Republican. He was in the Nevada state Senate from 1966–80, then joined the Nevada Supreme Court in ’85, retiring in 2002 after 18 years on the bench. He died in Reno, Nevada on April 3, 2016.

Society and Religion

Joe Medicine Crow (102) Native American historian and last surviving war chief of Montana's Crow Tribe. A member of the Crow Tribe's Whistling Water clan, Medicine Crow was raised by his grandparents in a log house in a rural area of the Crow Reservation near Lodge Grass, Montana. His Crow name was High Bird, and he recalled listening as a child to stories about the Battle of Little Bighorn from those who were there. Medicine Crow was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009. He died in Lodge Grass, Montana on April 3, 2016.

Joe Patten (89) affectionately known as the “Phantom of the Fox,” Patten spent much of his life restoring, preserving, and living in Atlanta's fabulous Fox Theatre—twice saving the historic landmark from fire and demolition. Built in the late ‘20s as a Shriners mosque, the Fox is decorated with minarets, arched doorways, and terrazzo floors. As live-in caretaker since 1979, Patten knew the theater so well that people sometimes said he seemed to exit one door only to reappear right away in another location, earning him his nickname. That knowledge of the building also helped him to save the Fox when a fire started early on the morning of April 15, 1996. He died of a stroke in Atlanta, Georgia on April 7, 2016.

Moslemuddin Sarkar (56) man who returned to Bangladesh in 2012 from a Pakistani prison, where he spent 15 years on suspicion of being an Indian spy. Sarkar vanished in 1989 from his village of Bishnurampur, about 110 kilometers (70 miles) north of Dhaka, and traveled for several years in India before being picked up in ‘97 by Pakistani authorities near the border. He spent 15 years in prison cells in Karachi and other locations in Pakistan. He had been suffering from diabetes and kidney failure and in recent days had trouble breathing. He died in Dhaka, Bangladesh on April 7, 2016.

Jules Schelvis (95) Dutch survivor of the Nazis’ Sobibor death camp who testified at the landmark trial of John Demjanjuk and founded the Sobibor Foundation. Deported to Sobibor in 1943, Schelvis lost 18 relatives at the camp in Nazi-occupied Poland. He wrote several books about Sobibor and founded the Sobibor Foundation in 1999 to keep alive the memory of the camp. In 2009 he recalled his Sobibor experiences in the Munich trial of Demjanjuk, who was accused of serving as a guard there. A retired Ohio autoworker, Demjanjuk was convicted on 27,900 counts of accessory to murder but always denied serving as a guard; he died before his appeal could be heard. Schelvis died in Amstelveen, the Netherlands, on April 4, 2016.

Marva Smith Battle-Bey (64) urban planning expert who worked to bring shopping centers and other development to south Los Angeles over more than 30 years. Smith Battle-Bey was at the center of efforts to rebuild damaged stretches of the city after the 1992 riots. But unlike other revitalization enthusiasts of the period, she was already there, working for redevelopment, years before the riots broke out—and stuck to the work for decades afterward. She was still chief executive and president of the nonprofit Vermont Slauson Economic Development Corp. until a few months before she died of pneumonia in Los Angeles, California on April 7, 2016.


Archie Dees (80) Indiana University basketball star. The first two-time Big 10 Conference Most Valuable Player, Dees made Bloomington his home and continued to advise players almost 50 years after he graduated. He averaged 25.4 points and 14.4 rebounds in 1957 when he led the Hoosiers to a conference title and won his first MVP award. In 1958 he did it again, averaging 25.5 points and 14.4 rebounds—numbers that still rank among the top five single-season totals in Hoosiers’ history—en route to a second straight conference crown and MVP honor. Dees died in Bloomington, Indiana on April 4, 2016.

Stan Drobac (88) coach of Michigan State’s men’s tennis team for more than 30 years (1958–89) who became a member of the Intercollegiate Tennis Hall of Fame. The Spartans won the Big 10 in 1967 and finished second in '61, ’66, and ’68. Drobac was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990. As a player for the Spartans, he won the Big 10 singles title in 1953 and teamed up with Tom Belton to win the Big 10 doubles title in '52–53. He died in Fountain Inn, South Carolina on April 3, 2016.

Cesare Maldini (84) soccer player and coach who was captain of the first Italian team to win the European Cup. Maldini played his first game with Milan in 1954. He later made 412 appearances and won four Italian league titles. As captain, he lifted Milan’s first European Cup in 1963 at Wembley Stadium after a victory over a Benfica team that included the great Portuguese player Eusébio. It was the first European Cup won by any Italian club. Maldini made 14 appearances for Italy, which he also captained, and played in the 1962 World Cup. As a coach, he won the European Championship three successive times with the under-21 team and coached the senior Italy team during the 1998 World Cup in France, losing in the quarterfinals on penalties to the hosts and eventual champions. He died in Milan, Italy on April 3, 2016.

Ogden Mills Phipps (75) American financier, thoroughbred owner and breeder, and former chairman of the Jockey Club. Under Phipps’s direction, Phipps Stable campaigned many winners of top races, including 2013 Kentucky Derby winner Orb, which Phipps owned in partnership with his cousin Stuart S. Janney 3rd. Phipps was the great-grandson of Henry Phipps, partner of steel magnate Andrew Carnegie; grandson of Henry Carnegie Phipps and Gladys Livingston Mills Phipps; and son of Lillian Bostwick Phipps, who died in 1987, and Ogden Phipps, who died in 2002. Ogden Mills Phipps died in New York City on April 6, 2016.

Mike Sandlock (100) catcher and infielder for three National League teams who achieved his foremost baseball distinction decades after his playing days were over when he became the oldest living former big league ballplayer. Sandlock played 16 seasons of professional baseball, most of it in the minor leagues. He played parts of two seasons with the Boston Braves in 1942 and ‘44 and had his best year in ‘45 with the Brooklyn Dodgers, batting .282 in 80 games and swatting the only two home runs of his career. Sandlock died in Cos Cob, Connecticut, the day after opening day, on April 4, 2016.

Will Smith (34) former New Orleans Saints player beloved by fans for his role in bringing a Super Bowl championship to New Orleans in 2009. Smith was shot and killed in a case of road rage by a man who had rear-ended his car, in New Orleans, Louisiana on April 9, 2016.

Murray Wier (89) first Iowa basketball player to be named a first-team All-American. Wier, who grew up in Grandview, Iowa, was a four-year starter for Iowa from 1945–48. He averaged 21 points a game as a senior, becoming the first officially recognized single-season scoring champion in NCAA history. He later played four seasons of professional ball, including one year under Hall of Fame coach Red Auerbach with the Tri-City Blackhawks. Wier died in Georgetown, Texas on April 6, 2016.

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