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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, April 25, 2020

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Abdullah al-Hamid, Saudi Arabian dissidentHeherson Alvarez, Philippine politicianPeter Beard, photographer of African wildlifeJames M. Beggs, '80s NASA administratorRon Birtcher, Orange County real estate developerJerry Bishop, off-camera announcer for 'Judge Judy'Hamilton Bohannon, drummer for disco musicPeter Brancazio, physics professor who debunked sports mythsRicardo Brennand, Brazilian manufacturer and antique collectorRené Buch, cofounder of NYC Spanish repertory theaterMichael Cogswell, saxophonist turned Louis Armstrong archivist and authoritySteve Dalkowski, fast pitcher who inspired movie characterPer Olov Enquist, Swedish novelist, playwright, and journalistRichard F. Fenno Jr., political science scholar and teacherRichard Hake, public radio hostZarina Hashmi, Indian-American artistDonald Reed Herring, oldest brother of Sen. Elizabeth WarrenPeter Jonas, opera impresarioDonald Kennedy, former president of Stanford UniversityShirley Knight, won two Emmys in 1995Terry Lenzner, investigatorRobert Loomis, legendary editor at Random HouseLewis MacAdams, activist for LA RiverSirio Maccioni, restaurateur behind NYC's Le CirqueRonan O'Rahilly, Irish entrepreneurHarold Reid, upper left, bass with Statler Brothers quartetJoel Rogosin, TV producerMarvin Schick, advocate for Orthodox JewsAkbar Nurid-Din Shabazz, first Muslim chaplain in Texas prison systemElizabeth Scholtz, first female director of US botanic gardenDavid Toren, Holocaust survivor who sought Nazi-stolen artIan Whitcomb, music historianBetsy James Wyeth, widow of painter Andrew Wyeth

Art and Literature

Peter Beard (82) New York photographer, artist, and naturalist to whom the word “wild” was roundly applied, both for his death-defying photographs of African wildlife and for his own much-publicized decades as an amorous, high-living man about town. Beard’s best-known work was the book The End of the Game, first published in 1965. It documented not only the vanishing romance of Africa—a place long prized by Western colonialists for its open savannas and abundant big game—but also the tragedy of the continent’s imperiled wildlife, in particular the elephant. Beard was found dead in the woods almost three weeks after he disappeared from his home in Montauk on the east end of Long Island, New York. His family confirmed that a body found in Camp Hero State Park in Montauk on April 19, 2020 was that of Beard. He had dementia and had experienced at least one stroke. He was last seen on March 31, and the authorities had conducted an extensive search for him.

Per Olov Enquist (85) Swedish novelist, playwright, and journalist who for decades was a leading voice in Scandinavian literary and cultural life. Enquist, better known to his many readers as P. O., published more than 20 novels, along with plays, essays, and screenplays. His work has been widely translated and won numerous literary prizes throughout Europe, including the August Prize, twice; the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize; and the Nordic Council Literature Prize. Enquist was a cowriter of the screenplay for Pelle the Conqueror, a father-son story, based on a novel by Martin Andersen Nexo, set in early 1900s Denmark. Starring Max von Sydow and directed by Bille August, it won the Oscar for best foreign film in 1988. Many of Enquist’s novels used historical scenarios or famous figures to explore philosophical, religious, and psychological themes. He died of organ failure in Vaxholm, Sweden, a village northeast of Stockholm, on April 25, 2020.

Zarina Hashmi (82) Indian-born American artist who turned the history of her life into a guide composed of spare images, poetic words, and subtle politics. Hashmi, who preferred to identify herself professionally by only her first name, became internationally known for woodcuts and intaglio prints, many combining semiabstract images of houses and cities she had lived in, accompanied by inscriptions written in Urdu, a language spoken primarily by Muslim South Asians. In South Asia itself, she was particularly revered as a representative of a now-vanishing generation of artists who were alive during the 1947 partition of the subcontinent along ethnic and religious lines, a catastrophic event that, Hashmi felt, cut her loose from her roots and haunted her life and work. She died of Alzheimer’s disease in London, England on April 25, 2020.

Robert Loomis (93) editor who, in more than 50 years at Random House, encouraged, prodded, and befriended authors like William Styron, Maya Angelou, Calvin Trillin, and many others. Loomis was a final link to the so-called “Golden Age” of publishing after World War II. He joined Random House in 1957, when cofounders Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer were running the company, and remained there into his 80s, long after most of his peers had died or changed jobs and long after the company had been bought by the German media conglomerate Bertelsmann AG. Among the award winners and best-sellers, fiction and nonfiction, that he helped to publish: Styron’s Sophie’s Choice, Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Jonathan Harr’s A Civil Action, and Neil Sheehan’s A Bright Shining Lie. Loomis, who retired in 2011, died in Stony Brook, New York after a fall, on April 19, 2020.

David Toren (94) Holocaust survivor and patent lawyer who waged a quest to recover art looted from his family by the Nazis. Toren’s campaign to recover the stolen works drew headlines when a painting by Max Liebermann, “Two Riders on the Beach,” surfaced in the collection of Cornelius Gurlitt, an elderly recluse. Gurlitt had hoarded the art he inherited from his father, a dealer for the Nazis, in his homes in Munich and Salzburg. Toren had been searching for the painting for years. Images of the work with other rediscovered paintings were displayed at a news conference given by the state prosecutor in Augsburg, Germany in November 2013. By then Toren was blind, a consequence of a severe case of shingles, but he could remember last seeing the painting hanging in his great-uncle’s villa in Germany 75 years earlier—on November 10, 1938, the day after Kristallnacht. The Gestapo eventually seized his great-uncle’s art collection, and “Two Riders” wound up in the hands of an unscrupulous museum director, who sold it to Gurlitt’s father. Toren eventually got it back in 2015 but continued his search for stolen art until his death from the coronavirus in New York City on April 19, 2020.

Betsy James Wyeth (98) widow, business manager, and muse of painter Andrew Wyeth (died 2009). Betsy Wyeth was a guiding force throughout her husband’s career, documenting and promoting his work and the legacy of a family that included book illustrator N. C. Wyeth, her father-in-law, and painter Jamie Wyeth, her son. After the former’s death, Betsy compiled and edited The Wyeths: The Letters of N. C. Wyeth, 1901–1945, a book that led to a reassessment of his career. In 1976 she published the first book on her husband’s work, Wyeth at Kuerners, followed by Christina’s World in ’82. Betsy James met Andrew Wyeth in Maine, where their families lived, and married him a year later, in 1940. They divided their time between coastal Maine and the hills of Chadds Ford in southeastern Pennsylvania, the landscapes Andrew captured in his often melancholy paintings. Betsy Wyeth died in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania on April 21, 2020.

Business and Science

James M. Beggs (94) former NASA administrator who led the agency during the early years of the space shuttle program and resigned after the Challenger disaster killed seven astronauts in 1986. President Ronald Reagan nominated Beggs to become sixth administrator of NASA. He served in the agency’s top position from July 1981 to December ’85. He was on a leave of absence from the post when the Challenger space shuttle broke apart 73 seconds after launch on January 28, 1986, killing all seven astronauts aboard, including New Hampshire schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe. Beggs’s resignation took effect nearly a month later. NASA had more than 20 successful space shuttle missions during his tenure. He died of congestive heart failure in Bethesda, Maryland on April 23, 2020.

Ron Birtcher (89) real estate developer who helped to transform Orange County in the decades after World War II from an agricultural community to one of the most densely populated regions in California. Birtcher and his brother Art also built large-scale projects in Los Angeles County, including the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood and the LA Wholesale Produce Market downtown. In the ‘50s Birtcher joined his father in a Corona del Mar construction and development business that pioneered a now-widespread building technique of creating concrete walls in molds on the ground, then tilting them up into place. In 1961 the Birtcher brothers founded Birtcher Pacific to construct, develop, market, and manage more than 40 million square feet of properties in the US. Much of their work was in Orange County, where they became prominent figures in the real estate industry at a time when the population was rapidly increasing and commercial firms were moving in, making the county increasingly more cosmopolitan. Ron Birtcher died of heart failure in Napa, California on April 21, 2020.

Peter Brancazio (81) physics professor who debunked concepts like the rising fastball (physically impossible) and Michael Jordan’s apparently endless hang time (much shorter than fans believed). Brancazio, who taught at Brooklyn College for more than 30 years, was one of a small number of sports-minded physicists whose research anticipated the use of the advanced statistics that are now accessible through computerized tracking technology. His work, which he began in the ‘80s, was filled with terms like launching angle (how high a ball is hit, in degrees) and spin rate (the measurement of a pitch in revolutions per minute) that are now part of baseball’s jargon. Although he was obsessed with basketball, Brancazio was best known for what he had to say about baseball, notably his explanation that a so-called rising fastball could not rise—even if pitches thrown by fireballers like Nolan Ryan had seemingly been doing that for decades. Brancazio died of the coronavirus in Manhasset, Long Island, New York on April 25, 2020.

Ricardo Brennand (92) Brazilian whose life as a collector started at age 12 with the gift of a pocketknife from his father. Brennand later amassed thousands of antique weapons, pieces of armor, clocks, keys, and a trove of art and artifacts from Brazil’s colonial era. The pocketknife was still in his collection at his death 80 years later. An engineer by training, he at one point owned more than 20 factories that produced steel, glass, cement, ceramics, and sugar, making him one of the richest men in Brazil’s poor northeast. Brennand designed and oversaw construction of the factories almost from scratch. He often traveled abroad to learn the latest manufacturing techniques and brought in foreign talent to help transform the region—whose economy for centuries relied on cheap labor and sugar cane—into an industrial hub. He died of Covid-19 in Recife, the capital of Pernambuco State, Brazil, on April 25, 2020.

Sirio Maccioni (88) Manhattan restaurateur who made Le Cirque a headquarters for Manhattan’s rich and powerful in the ‘80s and ’90s and put dishes like pasta primavera and crème brûlée on the culinary map. Charm and matinee-idol looks helped to make Maccioni an unusual sort of celebrity from the moment he took over as the maitre d’hotel at the Colony in the early ‘60s. His talent for pampering high-strung, demanding clients like Stavros Niarchos, Frank Sinatra, and the duke and duchess of Windsor elevated him to the status of trusted adviser, fixer, and social gatekeeper. After the Colony closed its doors in 1971, Maccioni, in partnership with its onetime chef, Jean Vergnes, opened Le Cirque in the Mayfair Hotel at Park Avenue and East 65th Street in ’74. It was an instant smash. Years of working in the hotel and restaurant business in Europe and the US had won Maccioni an international following that included royalty, film stars, jet-setters, and socialites. He also began courting a new clientele, the real estate tycoons, fashion-industry movers, and Wall Street brokers who flourished during the Reagan years. Maccioni died in the town where he was born, Montecatini, in Tuscany, Italy, two weeks after his 88th birthday, on April 20, 2020.

Elizabeth Sholtz (98) in 1972, when Scholtz became director of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the 52-acre urban garden founded in 1910, she was not only the first female director of a major botanic garden in the US. She was also one of the few women in charge of a large New York cultural institution. At the time, members of the Cultural Institutions Group, which included the directors of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the American Museum of Natural History, the Brooklyn Museum, and the garden, met at the Century Club on West 43rd Street. To attend the meetings, Scholtz entered through the service door so as not to upset the stodgy membership of what at the time was an all-male club that did not admit women until 1988. Scholtz died in Brooklyn Heights, New York on April 22, 2020.


Michael Cogswell (66) saxophonist who turned Louis Armstrong’s trove of memorabilia into a scholarly archive and transformed the trumpeter’s two-bedroom brick house in Queens, New York into a popular museum. When Armstrong died in 1971, he left behind 72 cartons packed with artifacts from his decades as probably the most celebrated figure in jazz. Inside the boxes were 650 reel-to-reel tape recordings of songs, ideas, and conversations; at least 5,000 photographs; 86 scrapbooks; 240 acetate disks of live recordings that he made at home; five trumpets; and 14 mouthpieces. Cogswell knew little about Armstrong when he answered a newspaper ad in 1991 for the archivist job. But after spending three years cataoguing the archive, he had become a devoted Satchmo fan and expert. And, consumed by the life and career of Armstrong, Cogswell rarely played the saxophone again. He died of bladder cancer in New York City on April 20, 2020.

Richard F. Fenno Jr. (93) scholar whose studies of how Congress and other parts of government actually work broke new ground in political science by focusing less on government processes and more on how the people’s representatives interact with their constituents back home. Fenno, who taught at the University of Rochester in upstate New York for 46 years, wrote 19 books, most focusing on the House or Senate. Some, including The Making of a Senator: Dan Quayle (1989) and Learning to Legislate: The Senate Education of Arlen Specter (1991), were about individual members; others dealt with broader subjects. Fenno was in a nursing home when he died, presumably from the coronavirus, although he had not been tested. He died in Rye, New York on April 21, 2020.

Donald Kennedy (88) former president of Stanford University who also led the US Food & Drug Administration and was editor in chief of the journal Science. A neurobiologist known for his humor, dedication to students, and bold leadership, Kennedy spent the bulk of his career in science and education at Stanford. He taught at Syracuse before arriving at “the Farm” in 1960 as an assistant professor, then climbed the ranks to become chair of the school’s biology department and helped to create, and for a time, directed Stanford’s interdisciplinary human biology program. He died of COVID-19 in Redwood City, California on April 21, 2020.

Ian Whitcomb (78) had a rock ’n’ roll hit in 1965 with “You Turn Me On” before becoming a celebrated historian and performer of forms of popular music that peaked decades before rock. From the time he was a boy in Britain, Whitcomb loved ragtime and other older styles of music. After playing blues, jazz, and skiffle music, he found widespread (if short-lived) fame with “You Turn Me On,” released while he was still a college student. An up-tempo number sung in a falsetto voice, it peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100. On the strength of that single’s success, Whitcomb traveled to the US and France; appeared on TV shows like American Bandstand; and was billed alongside the Rolling Stones, the Beach Boys, the Kinks, and Sonny & Cher. He later recorded modern versions of old tunes like Irving Berlin’s “Settle Down in a One-Horse Town” and original material with a similar sound. He died in Pasadena, California of a stroke suffered in 2012 that left him in declining health, on April 19, 2020.


Terry Lenzner (80) investigator with a Harvard pedigree whose career took him from pursuing civil rights violators in the South through the Watergate hearings and decades of sometimes controversial private investigations. In 1964, after a stint with a major law firm, Lenzner took a partner’s suggestion and applied for a job in the civil rights division at the Department of Justice. He was hired and sent to the South, where he helped to investigate the murders of civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, James Chaney, and Andrew Goodman and helped to manage the grand jury inquiry into the beatings of protesters on what came to be called “Bloody Sunday” at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. He learned to sleep on the floor in Southern hotels, with the mattress propped up against the window in case anyone decided to take a shot at him in the night. Lenzner died in Washington, DC of pneumonia, leukemia, and dementia on April 23, 2020.

News and Entertainment

Jerry Bishop (84) off-camera announcer for the courtroom TV show Judge Judy. Bishop had a career as a radio personality in Los Angeles for 30 years. He got his start in radio at Hartford, Connecticut station WDRC and moved to the West Coast in 1963, landing at KCBQ in San Diego. In 1965 he moved to LA to join KLAC, then KFI in '69, when it was the top “middle of the road” format station in the LA market. During his five-year stint there, Bishop cohosted Sports Phone, a call-in program that preceded the station’s broadcasts of the LA Dodgers games. He later moved to KIIS, where he partnered with Tom Murphy to host the Tom & Jerry Show in 1979. He launched a successful voice-over career in the mid-‘70s as announcer for the syndicated game show Cross-Wits and the NBC variety series Dick Clark’s Live Wednesday. Bishop was heard on commercials for several national brands and did on-air promos for ABC, NBC, and the Disney Channel. He signed on to Judge Judy when it first launched in 1996 and remained a familiar fixture during its run as the most-watched show in daytime. Suffering from heart complications and kidney failure, he died on April 21, 2020.

Hamilton Bohannon (78) drummer whose disco records propelled people onto dance floors in the ‘70s and ’80s, then lived on as popular samples for major hip-hop artists. Bohannon began his career primarily backing Motown acts like Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and Diana Ross & the Supremes, before going off on his own. Danceable rhythm was the defining characteristic of Bohannon's most successful compositions. He was an early devotee of the so-called four-on-the-floor rhythm, which became the backbone of disco and many later forms of dance music. He became known for long-running tracks like “Foot Stompin’ Music,” “Disco Stomp,” and “Bohannon’s Beat,” which often featured vocals chanted over a driving beat. They were made to keep dancers on the floor, and many of them became staples for disco disk jockeys. Bohannon's highest-charting single, “Let’s Start II Dance Again” (1981), reached No. 5 on Billboard’s dance/club chart. He died in Atlanta, Georgia on April 24, 2020.

René Buch (94) cofounder and artistic director of Repertorio Español, a repertory theater in Manhattan devoted to presenting Spanish-language works. Since 1968 Repertorio Español has reimagined Spanish classics and offered contemporary work by Latin and Latin American playwrights, always in Spanish, performed repertory-style. Maintaining a repertory theater, with a nearly permanent corps of actors performing a different work every night and at matinees, is a financial and artistic challenge. But Buch liked to say that the playwrights of the Spanish Golden Age—Cervantes et al—should be as well known here as Shakespeare. In the beginning he kept the operation afloat with a day job as a Spanish-language copywriter at the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency, while his cofounder, Gilberto Zaldívar (died 2009), who like Buch was born in Cuba, was an executive at Diners Club, the credit card company. Buch died of respiratory failure in New York City on April 19, 2020.

Richard Hake (51) public radio host and reporter for nearly 30 years who liked to say that his morning updates “woke up New York.” Hake’s voice was recognizable to many New Yorkers as the host of WNYC’s Morning Edition, providing local news reports and interviewing the region’s newsmakers. He also contributed reporting to national programs, including National Public Radio's All Things Considered. In March, as coronavirus cases surged in the city and officials told office workers to stay home, Hake set up a makeshift studio in his one-bedroom apartment. Hake’s station, WNYC, said the anchor died at his Manhattan apartment on April 24, 2020, where he’d been working in recent weeks as the coronavirus crisis kept station personnel from their offices.

Peter Jonas (73) impresario who turned the English National Opera in London and the Bavarian State Opera in Munich into influential hotbeds of innovation. Jonas was general director of the English National Opera from 1985–93 and intendant (executive and artistic director) of the Bavarian State Opera from ‘93–2006. Throughout his career he encouraged directors and designers, along with like-minded conductors and singers, to take bold interpretive approaches to the great operas of the past. Jonas had struggled with cancer for 45 years when he died in Munich, Germany on April 22, 2020.

Shirley Knight (83) Kansas-born actress who was nominated for two Oscars early in her career and later played an astonishing variety of roles in movies, TV, and the stage. Knight’s career carried her from Kansas to Hollywood, then to the New York theater and London and back to Hollywood. She was nominated for two Tonys, winning one. In recent years she had a recurring role as Phyllis Van de Kamp (mother-in-law of Marcia Cross’s character) on the long-running ABC show Desperate Housewives, gaining one of her many Emmy nominations, two of which she won in 1995. Knight’s first Oscar nomination for best supporting actress came in just her second screen role, as an Oklahoman in love with a Jewish man in the 1960 film version of William Inge’s play The Dark at the Top of the Stairs. She was nominated for best supporting actress for her role as the woman seduced and abandoned by Paul Newman in the 1962 film Sweet Bird of Youth, based on the Tennessee Williams play. Knight died in San Marcos, Texas on April 22, 2020.

Ronan O'Rahilly (79) Irish entrepreneur and showman behind Radio Caroline, most famous of the pirate radio stations run from ragtag ships moored in international waters in the '60s when the BBC had a monopoly on the airwaves. Pirate radio of the kind pioneered by Radio Caroline—Top 40 hits, all day long—was the soundtrack of British and European youth. In the beginning it was a moneymaker, with 20 million listeners and hundreds of thousands of pounds in revenue. O’Rahilly was no mariner—he suffered from seasickness—and never spun a record, but he was the station’s frontman and huckster. In 1967 the British Parliament passed the Marine Offenses Act, making it illegal to advertise on pirate radio or provide any services to the ships, thereby starving them of cash and supplies and turning disk jockeys into outlaws. O’Rahilly learned he had vascular dementia in 2013. He died in County Louth, outside Dublin, Ireland, on April 20, 2020.

Harold Reid (80) sang bass for the Grammy-winning country group the Statler Brothers, who frequently sang backup for country icon Johnny Cash. Some of their biggest hits included “Flowers on the Wall” (1965) and “Bed of Rose’s” (1970). Reid and three boyhood friends—Lew DeWitt, Phil Balsley, and Joe McDorman—formed the Four-Star Quartet in 1948. The group, later known as the Kingsmen, sang mostly gospel music. McDorman quit and was replaced by Don Reid, Harold’s younger brother. DeWitt once said the group changed its name again because several other acts—all better known—were billed as the Kingsmen. The new name came from a box of Statler tissue, he said. The quartet switched to country music in 1964 after meeting Cash and joining his road show. Over the next 20 years the Statlers won three Grammy Awards and were named top vocal groups nine times by the Country Music Association. Harold Reid died of kidney failure in Staunton, Virginia on April 24, 2020.

Joel Rogosin (87): Emmy-nominated TV producer whose producing credits include the ‘80s crime-fighting TV staples Knight Rider and Magnum, PI. One of Rogosin’s longest-running producing stints came on the classic TV western The Virginian, where he also made his directing debut in 1968. In one episode he agreed to cast dozens of Native-American extras at the demand of musician and guest star Buffy Sainte-Marie, who is Cree. Several of Rogosin’s projects featured characters with disabilities, including Ironside, which starred a retired detective who used a wheelchair. Rogosin died of the coronavirus in Woodland Hills, California on April 21, 2020.

Politics and Military

Abdullah al-Hamid (69) human-rights activist whose calls for reforming Saudi Arabia’s monarchy made him one of the kingdom’s most prominent and persistent dissidents and led to frequent prison terms. As a cofounder of one of the few independent human rights organizations in a country where dissent is smothered, al-Hamid did the unthinkable: He spoke publicly and repeatedly about sweeping political change there. In his writings, he called for Saudi Arabia to transform itself into a constitutional monarchy with an elected parliament that would guarantee accountability in government and an independent judiciary. He was currently serving an 11-year prison sentence when he suffered a stroke and fell into a coma on April 9. He died in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on April 24, 2020.

Heherson Alvarez (80) former Philippine senator who helped to lead a campaign against the brutal regime of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, then served in the national legislature after returning from exile in the US. As a young activist, Alvarez participated in a 1971 constitutional convention at which he refused to sign the Marcos-dictated Constitution. After he and his wife fled to the US, he helped to organize the opposition Movement for a Free Philippines. He was close to Benigno S. Aquino Jr., Marcos’s archrival, who was assassinated on an airport tarmac in 1983 on returning from exile in the US. Public anger over Aquino’s death snowballed into a popular revolt in 1986 that ousted Marcos. He was replaced by Aquino’s widow, Corazon Aquino, who was also close to the Alvarez family. Alvarez was a member of the Philippine Senate from 1987–98 and promoted environmental causes there. He was a member of the House of Representatives from 1998–2001. Alvarez died in Manila, the Philippines, on April 20, 2020.

Donald Reed Herring (86) oldest brother of Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Herring spent his career in the military after joining the US Air Force at age 19. He flew B-47 and B-52 bombers in 288 combat missions in Vietnam. He was a B-52 squadron pilot and a squadron aircraft commander before retiring in 1973 as a lieutenant colonel. He died in Norman, Oklahoma about three weeks after testing positive for the coronavirus, on April 21, 2020.

Lewis MacAdams (75) crusader for restoring the concrete Los Angeles River to a more natural state and cofounder of one of the most influential conservation organizations in California. MacAdams was a visionary figure who led the Friends of the LA River and mentored generations of activists in fights to reduce the damage along the 51-mile flood control channel hemmed by freeways, power lines, and railroad yards. As the group’s first president, he was influential in making river restoration an issue for policymakers and transformed the nonprofit from a handful of nature lovers to an organization with a list of 40,000 supporters, annual river cleanup efforts, and educational programs. He also did much of the work to win approval of a $1.6-billion federal project to restore habitat, widen the channel, create wetlands, and provide access points and bike trails along an 11-mile section of unpaved riverbed north of downtown. MacAdams died of Parkinson’s disease in Los Angeles, California on April 21, 2020.

Yukio Okamoto (74) Japanese diplomat and adviser to prime ministers, one of the most effective advocates for Japan’s alliance with the US and the country’s increased role in international politics. With a precise command of English, Okamoto helped to steer the American-Japanese relationship through some of its most difficult times. He was assigned to manage the partnership between the two countries in the ‘80s when they were competing for global economic leadership while also banding together over their shared apprehension of the Soviet Union’s influence in Asia. In 1991 Okamoto left his job at Japan’s foreign ministry to start his own consulting firm, serving on numerous corporate boards. But Japan's prime ministers called on him to use his knowledge about the US to help navigate some of the most sensitive issues affecting the two countries’ relationship, from the disposition of a US Marine base in Okinawa to the handling of the 70th anniversary of World War II. Okamoto died in Tokyo, Japan of pneumonia brought on by the new coronavirus, on April 24, 2020.

Society and Religion

Marvin Schick (85) pioneering advocate for the rights of Orthodox Jews to maintain their religious practices in the workplace. Schick grew up in an America where Orthodox Jews often faced painful choices in trying to earn a living: turn down jobs that demanded they forgo yarmulkes and remain beyond sunset on the eve of Sabbath or resign themselves to flouting their religious traditions. That began to change in the ‘60s because of activists like Schick. In 1965 he founded the National Jewish Commission on Law & Public Affairs, known as COLPA, which successfully brought lawsuits and sought new legislation. As a liaison to the Jewish community for New York Mayor John V. Lindsay, he secured other accommodations for the Orthodox. American society and law gradually became more sensitive to the sometimes arcane needs of the Orthodox. Schick died of a heart attack in Brooklyn, New York on April 23, 2020.

Akbar Nurid-Din Shabazz (70) throughout his 40 years as the first Muslim chaplain in the Texas prison system, Shabazz somehow found a way to instill hope among inmates who were often without it. He was one of more than 100 chaplains in the prison system, including five Muslims. He provided pastoral care, led prayer services, and worked at about 25 prisons, often counseling staff members and inmates. He was credited with expanding the practice of Islam in Texas prisons and with cementing Muslim traditions like Friday prayers and the observance of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month. Shabazz was well regarded among inmates of all faiths. He was among eight staff members and 72 offenders in the Texas prison system to succumb to the coronavirus, on April 23, 2020.


Steve Dalkowski (80) hard-throwing, wild left-hander whose minor league career inspired the creation of Nuke LaLoosh in the movie Bull Durham. Dalkowski never reached the major leagues but was said to have thrown well over 100 miles per hour. Long before velocity was tracked with precision, he spawned legends that estimated he approached 110 or 115—some said even 125 mph. Director and writer Ron Shelton had been a minor league infielder with the Orioles from 1967–71 and used the stories he heard about Dalkowski when he wrote and directed the ‘88 movie Bull Durham. Dalkowski signed with the Orioles in 1957 and remained in their minor league system until ’64. He finished with farm teams of the Pittsburgh Pirates and California Angels in 1965. He had been in assisted living for 26 years because of alcoholic dementia. He had several preexisting conditions when he became infected with the new coronavirus. He died in New Britain, Connecticut on April 19, 2020.

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