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Life In Legacy - Week ending Saturday, August 15, 2020

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Trini Lopez, Mexican-American singer and guitaristRobert Trump, right, with his presidential brotherBill Arnett, art collector and dealerJoseph Bartscherer, fine-art photographerKenneth Bernard, English professor and playwrightHowell Binkley, Tony-winning Broadway lighting designerJulian Bream, classical guitaristDan Budnik, '60s photographerAngela Buxton, right, with doubles tennis partner Althea GibsonNorman Carlson, former director of US Bureau of PrisonsDick Coury, football coachMarvin Creamer, geographer and marinerGrace Montañez Davis, first Mexican-American woman to serve as LA deputy mayorSteve Grossman, jazz saxophonistCarroll Hardy, pinch-hitter for Ted WilliamsJames ('Kamala') Harris, pro wrestlerMary Hartline, early TV starLuchita Hurtado, artistKurt Luedtke, journalist turned screenwriterLinda Manz, fillm actressGeoffrey Nunberg, linguistSumner Redstone, billionaire entrepreneurSister Elaine Roulet, nun who created programs for female prisoners and their childrenJoe Segal, Chicago jazz impresarioJames R. Thompson, longest-serving Illinois governorPeter V. Tytell, expert on typewriters

Art and Literature

Bill Arnett (81) had spent 20 years collecting and dealing antiquities from around the world—African art was his passion—when, in 1986, he had an epiphany in Birmingham, Alabama. There, artist Lonnie Holley assembled sculptures from salvaged junk, and on his first visit, Arnett bought one—a statement about racism made from a mannequin and chains. It inspired him more than anything he had seen in Europe, Africa, or Asia ever had. To Arnett, Holley’s work—and that of other black painters, sculptors, and quilters, most of them poor—was as distinguished as that of acclaimed white artists like Willem de Kooning, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jasper Johns. He became their fan, promoter, and patron and paid at least 20 of them stipends of $200–$500 a week while he brought their art, invisible to the traditional art world, to the attention of museums. Arnett had a history of diabetes and heart attack. He died in Atlanta, Georgia on August 12, 2020.

Joseph Bartscherer (65) fine-art photographer who created conceptual work about the constructed world, the natural world, and the intersection of the two. Bartscherer’s 40-year career as an artist was defined by long-term observation and doggedness of focus. His works included “Canal,” for which he traveled along a 19th-century canal between Liverpool and Leeds in England; “Nevada,” a deep dive into that state’s geology; and “Forest,” for which he returned again and again over 10 years to a section of New England woods to capture, in rich color, the changes to an eternal landscape. For “Pioneering Mattawa,” he spent nine years photographing a government irrigation project in Washington state that turned a desert into a fertile fruit-growing region. Through black and white photos, Bartscherer revealed the way humans shaped the land. One image shows a row of newly planted trees being bent back by the wind. He was found dead of hypertensive cardiovascular disease in Brooklyn Heights, New York on August 13, 2020.

Dan Budnik (87) photographer noted for his portraits of artists in New York in the ‘60s and documenting the civil rights movement and Native American culture. In 1958 Budnik photographed the Youth March for Integrated Schools and the March on Washington in ‘63 besides every stage of the Selma-to-Montgomery March in Alabama in ’65. He also was known for his '60s portraits of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. just moments after his “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington. A photojournalism professor at the University of Arizona, Budnik died in Tucson, Arizona of metabolic encephalopathy and dementia on August 14, 2020.

Luchita Hurtado (99) artist whose paintings and drawings emphasized the interconnectedness of all living things but whose work was recognized by the art world only late in her life. A near-contemporary and friend of Frida Kahlo, Isamu Noguchi, and Agnes Martin, among other prominent modern artists, Hurtado was at various times an active participant in the art scenes of New York; Mexico City; Taos, New Mexico; and Los Angeles, where she had lived since 1951. She died in Santa Monica, California on August 13, 2020.

Business and Science

Robert Trump (71) President Donald Trump’s younger brother, a businessman known for an even keel that seemed almost incompatible with the family name. The president visited his brother at an New York hospital after White House officials said he had become seriously ill. The youngest of the five Trump siblings had remained close to the 74-year-old president and, as recently as June, filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Trump family that unsuccessfully sought to stop publication of a tell-all book by the brothers' niece, Mary. Robert Trump had reportedly been hospitalized in the intensive care unit for several days. Both longtime businessmen, Robert and Donald had strikingly different personalities. Robert Trump died in New York City on August 15, 2020.

Peter V. Tytell (74) whose intricate knowledge of typewriters, nurtured by the Olivettis, Underwoods, and Royals of his parents’ repair shop in New York, led him to a career as a renowned forensic document examiner. Tytell’s vast expertise in typewriter, paper, and handwriting analysis was sought by prosecutors, public defenders, banks, insurance companies, and crime laboratories to help resolve disputes over the authenticity of documents. He died of pleural mesothelioma in New York City on August 11, 2020.


Marvin Creamer (104) had Creamer not been a geographer, he very likely would not have lived to be 104. He taught geography for many years at Glassboro State College, now Rowan University, in Glassboro, New Jersey. His expertise helped him to become a history-making mariner, the first recorded person to sail around the world without navigational instruments. His 30,000-mile odyssey, in a 36-foot cutter with a small crew, made headlines worldwide on its completion in 1984. Creamer died in Raleigh, North Carolina on August 12, 2020.

Geoffrey Nunberg (75) linguist whose essays and books explained to a general audience how English has adapted to changes in politics, popular culture, and technology. Nunberg’s fascination with the way people communicate found expression in books like Going Nucular: Language, Politics & Culture in Confrontational Times (2001); in scholarly work, in areas like the relationship between written and spoken language; and in lexicography—he was chairman of the usage panel of the American Heritage Dictionary. He died in San Francisco, California of glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer, on August 11, 2020.


Norman Carlson (86) director of the US Bureau of Prisons (1970–87). Among Carlson’s most lasting legacies were his expansion of the prison system in response to severe overcrowding and his establishment of the model for the super-maximum security prisons of today. Starting in the early ‘80s, government policies like the war on drugs and mandatory minimum sentencing had led to mass incarceration, swelling inmate populations in both state and federal systems. Aiming to ease the stress on penitentiary inmates and staff, Carlson favored building more prisons. During his tenure, he created 20 new facilities, nearly doubling the existing number. In Marion, Illinois he established a tough new system of solitary confinement that became the model on which future supermax penitentiaries were based, including the US Penitentiary Administrative Maximum Facility in Florence, Colorado, known as the ADX. It is the toughest prison in the federal system, housing those who have been labeled the “worst of the worst.” Carlson died of lymphoma in Phoenix, Arizona one day before his 87th birthday, on August 9, 2020.

News and Entertainment

Kenneth Bernard (90) playwright who rattled the expectations of audiences and critics with avant-garde works staged by the Playhouse of the Ridiculous and other theatrical groups in New York and beyond. By day Bernard was an English professor at Long Island University, a job he took in 1959 and held for more than 40 years. By night he was a central figure in the experimental theater movement that began in the small performance spaces of Midtown and Downtown Manhattan in the ‘60s. His works were a favorite of John Vaccaro, the director behind the Playhouse of the Ridiculous, whose productions helped to give rise to punk, queer theater, and more. The first Bernard play staged by the troupe, The Moke Eater (1968), was about a man who tries to get his car repaired in a small town and ends up in a nightmarish sort of challenge. The Bernard plays also included Night Club (1970), The Magic Show of Dr. Ma-Gico (1973), and The 60-Minute Queer Show (1977). Bernard died in New York City of hypertensive cardiovascular disease on August 9, 2020.

Howell Binkley (64) two-time Tony-winning Broadway lighting designer. Binkley had more than 50 Broadway credits and was nominated for the lighting design Tony nine times. He won for Jersey Boys, which opened in 2005, and the smash hit Hamilton in '15. Often since his first Broadway credit in 1993, four or five Broadway shows he designed were running simultaneously. He also worked extensively in regional theaters and in dance, including a decades-long collaboration with his friend, choreographer David Parsons. Modern Broadway lighting booths are full of high-tech gadgetry, but what Binkley helped Parsons to achieve with his “Caught” almost 40 years ago, using a strobe to make a lone dancer seem to float and fly against a black background, is legendary in the dance world. Binkley died of lung cancer in Jacksonville, North Carolina on August 14, 2020.

Julian Bream (87) English musician who pushed the guitar beyond its Spanish roots and expanded its range by commissioning dozens of works from major composers. Bream also played a crucial role in reviving the lute as a modern concert instrument. He was essentially the most eloquent guitarist of the era after Andrés Segovia carved out a spot for the guitar within the mainstream concert world. Bream, much more than Segovia, established the guitar’s credibility as a solo instrument. He died in Wiltshire, England on August 14, 2020.

Steve Grossman (69) saxophonist who caught the jazz world’s attention when he was recruited by Miles Davis at just 18. Grossman was playing at the Village Gate in Manhattan in 1969, just a year after entering the Juilliard School, when Davis walked in. Grossman was virtually unknown at the time, but Davis—an astute judge of talent whose sidemen over the years included John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Keith Jarrett, and other future stars—decided that he wanted him in his band. Grossman, who played tenor and soprano saxophone, joined at an opportune moment. Davis had recently finished recording the album Bitches Brew, a watershed in the fusion of jazz and rock, and his music was beginning to find a larger and younger audience. Grossman’s work with Davis, both in concert and on records, impressed musicians and listeners alike. He was soon recognized as a leading light of the post-Coltrane school. He died of cardiac arrest in Glen Cove, New York on August 13, 2020.

James ('Kamala') Harris (70) as a professional wrestler, Harris was Kamala, the “Ugandan Giant,” who filled the ring with his menacing wails. Billed most often at 6 feet 7 inches tall and weighing about 400 pounds, he towered over opponents, an edge he exploited by tilting back, hoisting a fist high above his head, then swinging it downward, appearing to strike foes with the force of his entire body. Harris died of the coronavirus in Oxford, Mississippi on August 9, 2020.

Mary Hartline (92) platinum-blonde entertainer who became one of network TV’s earliest stars on the children’s show Super Circus, a live Sunday afternoon series on ABC that began in early 1949. Hartline was a striking presence with her long wavy hair, her majorette-style costumes—including her signature uniform with musical notes on the thigh-high hemline—and white tasseled boots. Between the show’s death-defying circus acts, she conducted the band’s lively musical numbers, performed comedy sketches with the clowns, guided young audience members through contest segments, and delivered live commercials. Hartline, often called TV’s first sex symbol (a lot of fathers, it seems, were watching, alongside their offspring), was a master of promotion. Besides having her face on Kellogg’s cereal boxes, representing Canada Dry beverages, and demonstrating the joys of the newest Dixie Cup dispenser, she had her own merchandise line. Those three dozen products included the Mary Hartline doll, which can still bring hundreds of dollars at auction. She died in Hillsboro, Illinois on August 12, 2020.

Trini Lopez (83) singer and guitarist who gained fame for his versions of “Lemon Tree” and “If I Had a Hammer” in the ‘60s and took his talents to Hollywood. Mentored by Buddy Holly and Frank Sinatra, Lopez became an international star while performing in English and Spanish. Unlike Mexican-American singers such as Ritchie Valens, Lopez rejected advice to change his name and openly embraced his Mexican-American heritage despite warnings it would hurt his career. Sinatra signed Lopez to his Reprise Records label after seeing him perform at a West Hollywood nightclub. They became friends and were spotted together regularly in social circles in Las Vegas and Palm Springs. Lopez also appeared in the film classic The Dirty Dozen and the comedy The Phynx. He died of COVID-19 in Palm Springs, California on August 11, 2020.

Kurt Luedtke (80) rose to be top editor of a major American newspaper by age 33, then abruptly left journalism to become an Oscar-winning Hollywood screenwriter on films such as Out of Africa and Absence of Malice. Luedtke’s first film, Absence of Malice (1981), starring Sally Field and Paul Newman, was a dark drama about a reporter whose multiple ethical lapses led to tragedy. It earned him an Oscar nomination for original screenplay. In 1985 his second movie, Out of Africa, starring Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, cleaned up at the Academy Awards, winning seven Oscars, including best picture and, for Luedtke, screenplay based on material from another medium. His collaborator on both projects, Sidney Pollack, won for directing. Luedtke died of multiple organ failure in Royal Oak, Michigan on August 9, 2020.

Linda Manz (58) actress who won glowing reviews as the narrator and the little sister in Terrence Malick’s 1978 film, Days of Heaven. The movie, which takes place in 1916, follows two streetwise Chicago lovers, Bill and Abby (Richard Gere and Brooke Adams), who pose as brother and sister while working in the wheatfields of a rich Texas farmer. The deception leads to a dangerous romantic triangle. Linda, who was 4-feet-10 and played Bill’s little sister, was 15 when she was cast and 17 when the film opened. She later made a searing impression in 1980 in Dennis Hopper’s cult drama Out of the Blue, playing a rebellious daughter who worshiped Elvis Presley and liked to shout, “Kill all hippies!” on her CB radio. Then she disappeared from the screen. There was no dramatic walking-out-on-Hollywood story, Manz insisted; there were just a lot of new, young people in the business. She died of lung cancer and pneumonia in Palmdale, California on August 14, 2020.

Sumner Redstone (97) in 1979 billionaire entrepreneur Redstone was trapped in a deadly fire. He fled his third-floor hotel room at Boston’s Copley Plaza by crawling out a window, then crouching on a narrow ledge as flames seared his flesh. He suffered third-degree burns over 45 per cent of his body, then endured months in the hospital, numerous skin-grafting surgeries, and rehabilitation to learn to walk again. The fire didn’t change him, he later said, but the recovery proved his grit and determination. Over the years he outmaneuvered rivals to assemble one of America’s leading entertainment companies, now called ViacomCBS, which boasts CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, BET, Showtime, Simon & Schuster book publisher, and Paramount Pictures movie studio. His death in Los Angeles, California on August 11, 2020 was not related to the coronavirus.

Joe Segal (94) presented live jazz in Chicago under the Jazz Showcase banner for 70 years, making him one of the longest-running music promoters in America. World War II was barely over when Segal started promoting weekly jam sessions and concerts in 1947 on the campus of Roosevelt University on South Michigan Avenue. He was enrolled there on the GI Bill, but as he told the Smithsonian Jazz Oral History Program in 2015, he used his student status as a cover to book musicians. He booked a who’s who of jazz legends over his long career, both early greats like Sonny Rollins, Lester Young, Max Roach, Charles Mingus, Dizzy Gillespie, Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers, Charlie Parker, and contemporary standouts like Dee Dee Bridgewater and Joey DeFrancesco. Segal died in Chicago, Illinois on August 10, 2020.

Politics and Military

Grace Montañez Davis (93) first Mexican-American woman to serve as Los Angeles's deputy mayor, and it was no easy feat. People assumed Davis was the mayor’s social secretary. She often got phone calls and bills addressed to Tom Bradley’s then-campaign aide, Gray Davis, California's future governor. The first time she gathered the city’s 38 department heads, 36 of them men, her body shook with nerves. But in the 15-plus years she served in city government, Davis learned the ins and outs of the job like no other and became known for her attention to detail. She died of heart failure in Upland, California on August 15, 2020.

James R. Thompson (84) former Illinois governor whose prosecutions of public officials—including a predecessor—helped to catapult him to become the state’s longest-serving chief executive. Thompson was a prosecutor known for taking on Chicago’s Democrat machine in a state infamous for political corruption when he was first elected governor in 1976. He led the state through a recession in the ‘80s and served four terms before leaving office in 1991. A moderate Republican from Chicago, he worked across the political aisle to push through the construction of miles of highways and rebuild scores of bridges. He had a hand in the expansion of Chicago’s McCormick Place convention center and the construction of what is now the United Center, home to the NBA’s Bulls and the NHL’s Blackhawks. He also helped to put together a plan to help the White Sox get a new stadium to head off a potential move to Florida. Thompson died of heart problems in Chicago, Illinois on August 14, 2020.

Society and Religion

Sister Elaine Roulet (89) Roman Catholic nun who helped female inmates to bond with their children and created innovative programs for mothers both in prison and after release. Roulet followed the simplest of ideas: that female inmates, most of whom are mothers, should have regular time with their children and receive parenting lessons to prevent their family wounds from passing to the next generation. At the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison for women in Westchester County, New York, she helped to create the Children’s Center, a room filled with toys where mothers could play with their children instead of speaking stiffly across a table or through glass. She also revitalized the nursery to allow babies to live with their mothers for their first 12 or 18 months. The program has been replicated in prisons around the country. Roulet died of heart failure in the Rockaway Park section of Queens, New York, on August 13, 2020.


Angela Buxton (85) British tennis player, doubles partner of Althea Gibson when the American became the first black person to win a major title in 1956. Buxton and Gibson won the doubles titles at the French Open and Wimbledon in 1956, with Buxton also reaching the singles final at the All England Club that year. Gibson won the singles title at the French championships in 1956 and the singles titles at Wimbledon and the US Open in ‘57 and ’58. She died in 2003. Buxton was forced to retire at the end of the 1957 season, at age 22, because of a serious hand injury. She died in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on August 14, 2020.

Dick Coury (91) former football coach at Cal State Fullerton and Santa Ana Mater Dei High School who also enjoyed success coaching for several decades in the professional ranks. Coury began coaching at Mater Dei, where he was 85-9-5 as head coach from 1957–65 and coached future Heisman Trophy winner John Huarte. He was the first head coach at Cal State Fullerton in 1970 and was coach when assistants Bill Hannah, Dallas Moon, and Joe O’Hara were killed in a plane crash near Santa Barbara in November ’71. They were on their way to San Luis Obispo to scout their next opponent. A month later the Titans defeated Fresno State in the Mercy Bowl, a benefit for the families of the coaches. Coury later was an assistant coach in the NFL for 30 years. Among the stops he had were with the Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles, San Diego Chargers, Los Angeles and St. Louis Rams, New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Minnesota Vikings, and Houston Oilers. He was head coach of the Boston Breakers in the US Football League and named USFL coach of the year in 1983. He retired in 1999 to become a scout. Coury died on August 15, 2020.

Carroll Hardy (87) former reserve outfielder for the Boston Red Sox. Hardy was on the visitors’ bench in Baltimore late in the 1960 season when Ted Williams, the team’s megastar, fouled a pitch off his right foot during his first at-bat against the Orioles. Hobbled, Williams left the field. Hardy was told by Mike Higgins, known as Pinky, the Red Sox manager, to pinch-hit for Williams. He lofted a soft line drive to pitcher Skinny Brown, who threw to first base for a double play. It was a minor play in a forgettable season for the Red Sox, except for one thing. No one had ever—ever—pinch-hit for Ted Williams before. Over eight seasons in the major leagues, Hardy had a batting average of .225 with 17 home runs and 113 runs batted in. He died of dementia in Highlands Ranch, Colorado on August 9, 2020.

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