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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, May 23, 2020

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Annie Glenn, widow of astronaut and US senator John GlennKen Osmond, actor who played Eddie Haskell on 'Leave It to Beaver'Richard Anuszkiewicz, pioneer of Op ArtMory Kante, Guinean singerHana Kimura, Japanese pro-wrestlerLeonard Levitt, NYC crime reporterWilliam Lyon, Orange County real estate magnateLucky Peterson, early-blooming musicianSusan Rothenberg, figuration painterRonald Shurer 2nd, Medal of Honor recipientJerry Sloan, longtime Utah Jazz coachEddie Sutton, basketbal coach

Art and Literature

Richard Anuszkiewicz (89) pioneering practitioner of Op Art in the US before that style was even given a name in the ‘60s. Anuszkiewicz devoted his career to studying how some of the fundamental elements of art could be manipulated to create perceptual effects. His experiments with color led him to make paintings of geometric shapes that seem to vibrate and emanate light; and although his compositions are hard-edged, their repetition of shapes and lines and their complementary radiating hues evoke a kind of spirituality. Anuszkiewicz died in Englewood, New Jersey on May 19, 2020.

Susan Rothenberg (75) artist whose paintings helped to usher figuration back into an art world that had declared it extinct in the ‘70s. Rothenberg’s work has been included in museum collections worldwide, and she was one of the artists who represented the US in the 1980 Venice Biennale. Major surveys of her work originated at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo in 1992 and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth in 2009. Rothenberg said she considered herself a groundbreaking artist partly in the sense that she had had the confidence to paint for herself. She died in Galisteo, New Mexico on May 18, 2020.

Business and Science

William Lyon (97) Orange County real estate magnate who built more than 100,000 homes nationwide and helped to shape suburban America over the past 50 years. Lyon, a former US Air Force general, was among the pioneers of southern California’s post-World War II economic boom, a businessman who foresaw the region’s growth and the need for housing. Lyon began his construction career in 1954 with a 66-home project in Anaheim. Within 10 years he was among the nation’s largest homebuilders and rode the wave of suburban sprawl for decades to come. He died in Coto de Caza, California, not from the coronavirus, on May 22, 2020.

News and Entertainment

Mory Kante (70) Guinean singer, an influential figure in African and world music. Kante brought Guinean, and Mandingo, culture to the world. He was called an ambassador of Afro-Pop music. His song “Yeke Yeke,” released in the late ’80s, has been remixed and covered extensively. Kante died in the capital, Conakry, Guinea, on May 22, 2020.

Hana Kimura (22) Japanese pro-wrestler who appeared in the latest season of the popular reality show Terrace House. Kimura became the target of massive bullying on social media over her role on the show on Netflix, which involves three men and three women temporarily living together at a shared house in Tokyo. The show was temporarily suspended owing to the coronavirus. In her latest Instagram posting on May 22, Kimura published a photo of herself and her cat, with a message saying “Goodbye.” She was found dead at her home in Tokyo, Japan on May 23, 2020.

Leonard Levitt (79) longtime New York crime reporter known for his writing on the inner workings of policing and coverage that helped to reopen the investigation into the killing of Martha Moxley. Aside from his coverage of the New York Police Department, Levitt was perhaps best known for his work digging into Moxley’s death. His reporting on the 1976 killing of the Greenwich, Connecticut teenager led authorities to revisit the case and charge Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel with murder. Levitt wrote about the Moxley case in Conviction, one of six books he wrote. Friends, colleagues, and even some of his targets remembered Levitt as a one-of-a-kind journalist who brought integrity and depth to his reporting—and zero tolerance for people who hid the truth. He died of lung cancer in Stamford, Connnecticut on May 18, 2020.

Ken Osmond (76) actor who played two-faced teenage scoundrel Eddie Haskell on TV’s Leave It to Beaver, a role so memorable that it left him typecast and led to a second career as a police officer. The classic family sitcom, which ran from 1957–63 on CBS and ABC, had a decades-long life of reruns and revivals. Eddie was the best friend of Tony Dow’s Wally Cleaver, big brother to Jerry Mathers’ Beaver Cleaver. Eddie constantly kissed up to adults, flattering and flirting with Wally and Beaver’s mother, but kicked down his peers, usually in the same scene. He was the closest thing the wholesome show had to a villain, and viewers of all ages loved to hate him. Osmond returned to TV in 1983, when Leave It to Beaver reruns were having a heyday, appearing in the TV movie Still the Beaver. A revival series, The New Leave It to Beaver, came next, with Osmond reprising the role of Haskell alongside Dow and Mathers from 1983–89. Osmond’s real-life sons, Eric and Christian, played Haskell’s sons, who inherited their father’s smarminess on the series. Osmond died in Los Angeles, California on May 18, 2020.

Lucky Peterson (55) in his recent concerts this bluesman had been celebrating his 50th anniversary in show business. That was amazing considering that Peterson was only 55. Known as a guitarist, an organist, and a vocalist, he cut his first record at 5. By age 8 he had been on The David Frost Show, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, and more. But he was more than a childhood novelty act. Peterson blossomed into a reliable blues player, backing stars like Etta James and Otis Rush and fronting his own groups on albums and in live shows. His latest album, 50: Just Warming Up!, was released in 2019. Peterson died in Dallas, Texas on May 17, 2020.

Politics and Military

Annie Glenn (100) was thrust into the spotlight in 1962 when her husband, John Glenn, became the first American to orbit the Earth. But Annie shied away from the media attention because of a severe stutter that later moved her to advocate for people with speech disorders. John Glenn died in 2016 after also breaking the transcontinental speed record and serving as a Democrat US senator from Ohio. The couple were high school sweethearts and were married for 73 years. At age 53 in 1973, Annie enrolled in an intensive program at the Communications Research Institute at Hollins College, now Hollins University, in Roanoke, Virginia, that gave her the skills to control her stutter and to speak in public. By the time 77-year-old John Glenn returned to space in 1998 aboard the space shuttle Discovery, Annie showed she had become comfortable in her public role. She died of COVID-19 near St. Paul, Minnesota on May 19, 2020.

Ronald Shurer 2nd (41) former US Army staff sergeant who received the Medal of Honor in 2018 for braving heavy gunfire to save lives in Afghanistan. A native of Fairbanks, Alaska, Shurer was a senior medical sergeant in the special forces on April 6, 2008, when his team encountered machine-gun and sniper fire and rocket-propelled grenades from militants. Shurer stabilized one soldier, then fought his way amid gunfire up a mountain to the lead members of the unit. There he treated and stabilized four more soldiers and helped to evacuate them. He lowered the wounded down the steep mountainside while using his body to shield them from enemy fire. After he had loaded the wounded in an evacuation helicopter, Shurer went back up the mountain to fight. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2017 and died in Washington, DC on May 21, 2020.


jerry Sloan (78) basketball coach who spent 23 years as coach of the Utah Jazz and took the team to the NBA Finals in 1997–98. Sloan presided over the glory days of the John Stockton and Karl Malone pick-and-roll-to-perfection era in Salt Lake City. He was a two-time All-Star as a player with the Chicago Bulls. He led his alma mater, Evansville, to a pair of NCAA college division national championships and was an assistant coach on the 1996 US Olympic team that won a gold medal at the Atlanta Games. For four years he fought Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia. Sloan died in Salt Lake City, Utah on May 22, 2020.

Eddie Sutton (84) coached major college basketball teams to a total of 806 victories in a career spanning 37 seasons and became the first coach to take four schools to the NCAA Division I championship tournament. Sutton coached Creighton, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Oklahoma State to a total of 26 NCAA championship tournaments and reached the Final Four three times—with Arkansas in 1978 and Oklahoma State, his alma mater, in '95 and 2004. Although he was not accused of wrongdoing, Sutton resigned from his coaching post at Kentucky after the 1988–89 season when the basketball program was hit with major penalties by the NCAA for a host of rules violations, many involving recruiting. He died in North Tulsa, Oklahoma on May 23, 2020.

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