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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, January 18, 2020

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Frieda Caplan, founder of Frieda Inc., supplier of exotic fruits and vegetablesRocky Johnson, right, with his son, actor Dwayne ('The Rock') JohnsonSir Roger Scruton, British conservative philosopherChristopher Tolkien, son of 'Lord of the Rings' author J.R.R. TolkienBarry Tuckwell, French horn soloist and symphony conductor

Art and Literature

Christopher Tolkien (95) played a major role in protecting the legacy of his father’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Tolkien’s life work was closely identified with that of his father. He helped to edit and publish much of the science fiction and fantasy writer’s work after J.R.R. Tolkien died in 1973. Among the books the younger Tolkien worked on were The Silmarillion, The Children of Hurin, and other texts that flesh out the world his father created. He also drew the original maps that adorned the three Lord of the Rings books—The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King—when they were published in the ‘50s. Christopher Tolkien died in Provence, France on January 16, 2020.

Business and Science

Frieda Caplan (96) they called her “Kiwi Queen,” “Mother Gooseberry,” “Mushroom Lady,” and “the Mick Jagger of the produce world.” Caplan was credited with introducing kiwis, mangoes, habanero and shishito peppers, passion fruit, bean and alfalfa sprouts, baby carrots, sugar snap peas, starfruit, blood oranges, shiitake mushrooms, turmeric, and hundreds more fruits and vegetables into the supermarket mainstream. She was talkative and driven and loved to take risks, a gritty business owner deemed the first woman to own and run her own produce house, Frieda Inc., in Los Angeles's Wholesale Produce Market and the US. In heels and a skirt, she revolutionized the way the produce world did business, adding recipes and cooking instructions on packages of “exotic” produce. Caplan, who never learned to cook, died in Los Alamitos, California on January 18, 2020.


Sir Roger Scruton (75) one of Britain’s most prominent conservative philosophers. A graduate of Cambridge University, Scruton embraced conservative ideas after visiting Paris amid the May 1968 student uprising. A lecturer for many years at the University of London’s Birkbeck College, he carved out a role as a public intellectual—a relatively rare thing in Britain—with more than 50 books on morality, politics, culture, and aesthetics, including The Meaning of Conservatism, The Aesthetics of Architecture, and England: An Elegy. Scruton valued tradition, high culture, and the British countryside; he disliked socialism, liberalism, most modern architecture, and much of popular culture. Knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2016, he died of lung cancer in Brinkworth, Wiltshire, England on January 12, 2020.

News and Entertainment

Rocky Johnson (75) World Wide Entertainment Hall of Fame wrestler who became better known as the father of actor Dwayne (“The Rock”) Johnson. The elder Johnson and Tony Atlas became the first black world tag team champions in WWE history when they defeated The Wild Samoans on December 10, 1983. Johnson later helped to train his son, who adopted the Rocky moniker from his father. Johnson came to his son’s aid after a match at WrestleMania in 1997. The Rock inducted his father into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2008. Rocky Johnson died in Lutz, Florida on January 15, 2020.

Barry Tuckwell (88) considered by many the finest horn player of his generation, who displayed his skill in concerts all over the world and on dozens of recordings. Australian by birth, Tuckwell was a master of the French horn, one of the more difficult instruments in the orchestra to play well, especially as a soloist. He took up the instrument as a teenager and became principal horn of the London Symphony Orchestra in 1955. In 1968 he embarked on a solo career, a rare step for a horn player. He quickly developed a reputation for both a rich tone and a dexterity with difficult passages. He also conducted, leading the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra of Australia in the early ‘80s before spending 17 seasons leading the Maryland Symphony Orchestra. Tuckwell died of heart disease in Melbourne, Australia on January 17, 2020.

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