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Life In Legacy - Week ending November 26, 2005

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Pat Morita, beloved Oscar-nominated actorAlfred Anderson, last WWI survivor of Christmas truceMike Austin, golfer with record for longest drive in pro golf tournamentStan Berenstain, creator of Berenstain BearsGeorge Best, Soccer Hall of Fame member and one of the best soccer players everLes Brownlee, first black reporter for Chicago Daily NewsRichard Burns, only Englishman to win World Rally ChampionshipGlenn W. Burton, agronomist who developed grass for golf coursesConstance Cummings, American actress who starred on London stageSam, three-time champ of the World's Ugliest Dog ContestFrank Gatski, Cleveland Browns Hall of FamerDermot Gogarty, young British prep school headmasterHeinz Heinemann, chemist who developed method for converting methanol to gasolineBruce Hobbs, youngest jockey ever to win British Grand NationalKennell A. Jackson Jr., Stanford U history professorJonathan James-Moore, former head of Light Entertainment on BBC radioJames King, American operatic tenorDavid Kurtz, FM radio pioneerClarence Laking, last Canadian who saw action in WWIHarry W. Lawton, author whose book inspired movieKatherine Lederer, chronicler of black culture in the OzarksIrving Ludwig, film distribution executive for DisneyKen Mackintosh, British big band leaderMichael J. McCormick, Detroit News production editorLou Myers, magazine and advertising cartoonistStelios Papadimitriou, former aide to Aristotle OnassisMaurice Paprin, real estate entrepreneurJoe Pinckney, artist known for paintings of African cultureLuce Potter, one of last surviving Munchkins from The Wizard of OzFritz Richmond, folk musician who played the jug and washtub bassBill Robinson, former spokesman for San Diego policeKatherine Sergava, dancer who appeared in first Oklahoma!Hugh Sidey, Time magazine columnist and White House expertRev. Albert J. Sloan, president of Miles CollegeMargretta Styles, nursing educatorBill Tracy, former member of Modernaires quartetLit Waters, member of gospel group the Fairfield FourChris Whitley, Texas-based singer/songwriter

Art and Literature

Harry W. Lawton (77) journalist and author whose book Willie Boy: A Desert Manhunt (1960) was an account of the 1909 manhunt for an American Indian fugitive that inspired the movie Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (1969). Lawton helped to found the Malki Museum on the Morongo Indian Reservation and helped to start the nonprofit Malki Museum Press, which publishes books and pamphlets about California Indians. He died in Dana Point, California on November 20, 2005.

Lou(is) Myers (90) satiric artist and graphic essayist whose expressive style helped to modernize cartoons in advertisements and major American magazines. Myers was dispatched to paint combat scenes and officers' portraits throughout Europe and illustrated magazine and newspaper articles in publications that included Monocle, Ramparts, Esquire, and the New York Times. He created the cartoon logo of two men in the same polka dot dress for the film poster for La Cage aux Folles (1978). He died of spindle cell carcinoma in Cortlandt Manor, New York on November 20, 2005.

Joe Pinckney (75) artist known for his paintings of the Gullah people (descendents of African slaves who settled on isolated sea islands and marshy areas from Florida to North Carolina in the 19th century). Pinckney painted his first Gullah piece in the late '70s after hearing native islanders talk about the development of the culture sparked his interest. He studied at the New York School of Industrial Art and the Manhattan School of Printing. He died of kidney failure on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina on November 22, 2005.

Business and Science

Glenn W. Burton (95) agronomist credited with improving the food staple pearl millet and developing popular grasses for athletic fields and golf courses. Burton's work with pearl millet (a food staple for 90 million people around the world) enabled India, Pakistan, and several African nations to increase their production. He also developed nutritious grasses for cattle, and Tiffine, an ultrashort hybrid turfgrass that gave Southern golfers real putting greens and won him a place in the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame. He died in Tifton, Georgia on November 22, 2005.

Heinz Heinemann (92) retired petroleum chemist who developed a process for converting methanol to gasoline. During more than 60 years of research, Heinemann contributed to the invention and development of 14 commercial fossil fuel processes, won 75 patents, and was the author of more than 100 publications. He was founder of the journal Catalysis Reviews and its editor for 20 years. He died of pneumonia in Washington, DC on November 23, 2005.

Stelios Papadimitriou (75) Greek attorney and a close aide of Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis. Papadimitriou was personal lawyer and chief executive of Onassis's shipping business and honorary chairman of the Alexander S. Onassis Foundation, who clashed bitterly with his employer's former son-in-law over management of the magnate's wealth. He died of lung cancer in Athens, Greece on November 23, 2005.

Maurice Paprin (85) real estate entrepreneur who built thousands of apartments in New York City and spent decades promoting liberal causes. Paprin built a fortune by buying and managing large apartment buildings and subsidizing housing complexes throughout the city. He later became an activist, protesting US wars and founding a nonprofit organization called the Fund for New Priorities. He was chairman of the Business, Labor & Community Coalition of New York and president of Associated Builders & Owners of Greater New York for 14 years. He died after having been injured in a fall, in New York City on November 25, 2005.


Dermot Gogarty (47) Briton who turned St. John's Beaumont at Windsor into one of the most admired prep schools in the country after he became headmaster in 1987. Gogarty instilled the traditional values of a broad literary education at his school and attracted a wide variety of visitors to the school, including the Princess of Wales and Mother Teresa. He was killed in a car crash in England on November 21, 2005.

Kennell A. Jackson Jr. (64) Stanford University history professor considered a pioneer in the study of East Africa. Jackson was the director of Stanford's African & African-American Studies Program for nearly 10 years. His books include America Is Me: The Most Asked & Least Understood Questions About Black American History He died of pulmonary fibrosis in Stanford, California on November 21, 2005.

Katherine Lederer (73) former professor at Missouri State University who chronicled black culture in the Ozarks starting in the '70s when she wrote an article about the lynchings of three black men on Easter weekend of 1906 in Missouri. Lederer amassed a collection of more than 2,500 photographs and wrote Many Thousand Gone: Springfield’s Lost Black History (1986), which documents the lynchings and profiles the area's black community. Her works are now housed in Missouri State's Katherine G. Lederer Ozarks African-American History Collection, which contains more than 7,500 documents dating back to the Civil War. She died in Springfield, Missouri on November 24, 2005.

Rev. Albert J. Sloan (62) Miles College (Ala.) president who brought the historically black institution back from the brink of closing. Sloan was the 12th president in the school's 100-year history but the first to be chosen from its ranks. His leadership led the institution to stabilize enrollment, improve finances, and strengthen its academic programs. He died after surgery in Birmingham, Alabama on November 25, 2005.

Margretta Styles (75) nursing educator who conceived and helped to establish precise national standards for certifying nurses in pediatrics, cardiology, and other medical specialties. Styles died of colon cancer in Clearwater, Florida on November 20, 2005.

News and Entertainment

Stan Berenstain (82) author of the beloved children's book series featuring the Berenstain Bears—Mama, Papa, Brother, and Sister who confronted and learned from life's little crises. Berenstain wrote (with his wife, Jan) more than 250 books and saw them sell more than 300 million copies and spinoff into everything from TV shows to amusement park rides to McDonald's Happy Meal promotions to video games to musicals. He died of lymphoma in Doylestown, Pennsylvania on November 26, 2005.

Les Brownlee (90) journalist and Columbia College professor, the first black reporter for the Chicago Daily News and first black on-air reporter for WLS-TV. Brownlee won a lifetime achievement award from the Chicago Headline Club, a chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and was the first black journalist to join the society. He died of cancer in Evanston, Illinois on November 21, 2005.

Constance Cummings (95) American-born actress, a Hollywood star in the '30s who later became one of the leading figures on the British stage. Cummings made more than a dozen Hollywood films including American Madness (1932) and The Criminal Code (1931) and later starred in such plays as Goodbye Mr. Chips, Long Day's Journey into Night, and Romeo & Juliet on the British stage. She died in Oxfordshire, England on November 23, 2005.

Jonathan James-Moore (59) British theater manager and radio producer and executive who headed Light Entertainment on BBC radio and oversaw comedy series including Knowing Me, Knowing You and The League of Gentlemen. James-Moore also was chairman of the Radio Group of the Directors’'Guild and on the council of the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts. He died of cancer in London, England on November 20, 2005.

James King (80) American tenor whose vibrant, powerful voice made him a favorite in leading roles on opera stages around the world during the '60s and '70s. King later became a music professor at Indiana University. He died of a heart attack in Naples, Florida on November 20, 2005.

David L. Kurtz (73) FM pioneer who founded one of the last independently owned FM stations in a major US market. Kurtz founded WDVR in 1963, a 24-hour station playing adult contemporary music that is now WBEB (B101) in Philadelphia. He was a member of the National Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame. He died of kidney cancer in Philadelphia, Pensylvania on November 24, 2005.

Irving Ludwig (95) film distribution executive who helped to launch such Disney films as Fantasia, Mary Poppins, and The Love Bug. Ludwig joined the Walt Disney Co. in 1940, just in time to manage the release of Fantasia. He also helped to launch such movies as The Shaggy Dog, The Parent Trap, and The Absent-Minded Professor, among others. He died in Santa Monica, California on November 26, 2005

Ken Mackintosh (86) saxophonist and leader of Ken Mackintosh, His Saxophone & His Orchestra, one of the most popular British dance bands of the postwar years. Mackintosh's name became synonymous with big band music from the late '40s to the '70s, during which time he also briefly hosted his own TV show and appeared in numerous films. He won the Gold Badge of the British Academy of Composers & Songwriters in 2001. He died in Mitcham, Surrey, England on November 22, 2005.

Michael J. McCormick (60) Detroit News production editor who launched the careers of dozens of young journalists in his role overseeing the paper's internship program. McCormick was active in the Old Newsboys' Goodfellow Fund of Detroit and put the finishing touches on the 2005 edition of the charity's newspaper, which came out Nov. 28. Sales of the special editions of the Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press were used to buy warm clothes and gifts for children during the holiday season. He died of liver disease in Detroit, Michigan on November 26, 2005

Pat Morita (73) beloved actor whose portrayal of the wise and dry-witted Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid earned him an Oscar nomination. Morita first rose to fame as Arnold on Happy Days and later appeared in numerous film and TV roles on such shows as Sanford & Son and Green Acres and movies including Honeymoon in Vegas, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, and all three Karate Kid sequels. He appeared in three films scheduled to be released in 2006. He died in Las Vegas, Nevada on November 24, 2005.

Luce Potter (90) midget actress who enjoyed roles in two cult sci-fi films of the '50s, Invaders from Mars and The Incredible Shrinking Man. Potter was one of the last surviving Munchkins from The Wizard of Oz (1939). She died in Rancho Mirage, California on November 21, 2005.

Fritz Richmond (66) folk musician considered one of the world's finest players of the jug and washtub bass who became a key figure on the Boston folk music scene and won national attention in 1963 with the Jim Kweskin Jug Band. Richmond engineered albums for such artists as Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt, made appearances on A Prairie Home Companion, toured with John Sebastian's J-Band, and had his washtub bass housed in the Smithsonian Institution. He died of lung cancer in Portland, Oregon on November 20, 2005.

Katherine Sergava (96) dancer and actress who portrayed Laurey in Agnes deMille's dream ballet in the original Broadway production of Oklahoma! Sergava danced with the Mordkin Ballet, Ballet Theater (now American Ballet Theater), and the Original Ballet Russe. She also appeared in a variety of plays, including Dial M for Murder, and taught drama at HB Studios in New York City for more than 30 years. She died in New York City on November 26, 2005.

Hugh Sidey (78) trusted journalist whose personal profiles of America's chief executives appeared in Time magazine's "The Presidency" column over 40 years. Sidey was Time’s White House correspondent and its Washington bureau chief and was granted unusual access to the Presidents. He wrote or contributed to seven books on the chief executive and appeared as a panelist on the TV program Agronsky & Co. and its successor, Inside Washington, for nearly 25 years. He died of a heart attack in Paris, France on November 21, 2005.

Bill Tracy (72) singer and a former member of the Modernaires quartet who appeared in films as a member of the Bob Mitchell Boys Choir in the late '40s and '50s. Tracy also spent 10 years as comedian Jackie Curtiss's straight man, appearing regularly on late-night TV talk shows. He died after heart surgery in Scottsdale, Arizona on November 20, 2005.

Wilson ("Lit") Waters Jr. (74) member of the Grammy-winning gospel a capella group the Fairfield Four since 1982 who also performed and recorded with the gospel group the Skylarks. The Fairfield Four recorded with John Fogerty, Elvis Costello, and others and contributed to the film and Grammy-winning soundtrack of O Brother Where Art Thou? Waters died of cancer in Nashville, Tennessee on November 24, 2005.

Chris Whitley (45) Texas-based singer-songwriter who oscillated among rock & roll, blues, and alternative rock but was best known for carving a personalized, often brooding take on country blues, marked by his mastery of the slide steel guitar and other stringed instruments. Whitley spent time playing in Belgium, Germany, New York City, and Louisiana and recorded 11 albums since his critically acclaimed 1991 debut Living with the Law, including Soft Dangerous Shores (2005). He died of lung cancer in Houston, Texas on November 20, 2005.

Politics and Military

Alfred Anderson (109) last surviving soldier to have heard the guns fall silent along the Western Front during the spontaneous Christmas Truce of World War I. Anderson recalled the eerie sound of silence as shooting stopped and soldiers cautiously emerged from the trenches on Christmas Day 1914 and swapped cigarettes and tunic buttons, sang carols, and even played soccer amid the mud, barbed wire, and shell-holes of no man's land. He won France's Legion of Honor for his war service and was Scotland’s oldest man. He died in his sleep in Newtyle, Scotland (leaving fewer than 10 veterans of WWI alive in Britain), on November 21, 2005.

Clarence Laking (106) last Canadian who saw action in World War I. Laking served two years in France as a signaler, stringing wire for field telephones along the trenches for $1.10 Canadian a day. He won the French Legion of Honor and the Golden Jubilee Medal. His death leaves four surviving Canadians who served in the 1914-18 conflict. He died in Toronto, Canada on November 26, 2005.

Bill Robinson (64) former Marine who for nearly 30 years worked as a public information officer for the San Diego Police Department, bridging the sometimes contentious relationship between the police and the media. Robinson was police spokesman during some of the city's most traumatic moments, including controversial officer-involved shootings, the 1978 crash of PSA Flight 182, and the '84 massacre at a McDonald's restaurant. He won a lifetime achievement award from the San Diego Press Club. He died of cancer in San Diego, California on November 23, 2005.

Society and Religion

Sam the Dog (14) purebred Chinese Crested Hairless and proud three-time champ of the World's Ugliest Dog Contest, who became a minor celebrity, with his ugliness winning him TV appearances, limousine rides, and even a meeting with millionaire Donald Trump. Sam was scheduled to be filmed for a Discovery Channel series on the world's ugliest species. His heart was failing, and he was euthanized in Santa Barbara, California on November 22, 2005.


Mike Austin (95) golfer best known for a 515-yard drive made during a 1974 US National Seniors Open Championship that set the world record for the longest drive in a professional golf tournament, a record that still stands today. Austin was voted Southern California Golf Professional of the Year in 1984 and one of the top 50 golf instructors in the US in 1991 by the Professional Golfers Association. Despite suffering a stroke in 1989 that left him partially paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair, he continued to teach golf until about two weeks before his death in Woodland Hills, California on November 22, 2005.

George Best (59) Northern Ireland soccer legend considered one of the most talented and exciting players to ever play the sport. Best played for Manchester United, Stockport County, Cork Celtics, Dunstable Town, Los Angeles Aztecs, Fulham, Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Hibernian, San Jose Earthquakes, Bournemouth, and the Brisbane Lions. He won the European Cup (1968) and English League Division 1 (1965, '67), Football Writers' Player of the Year and European Player of the Year (both 1968). He was inducted into the International Football (soccer) Hall of Fame in England. He died of multiple organ failure after a lifelong battle with alcoholism, in London, England on November 25, 2005.

Richard Burns (34) second Briton—and only Englishman to win the World Rally Championship. Burns drove in his first rally in 1988, in a Talbot Sunbeam, and in '90 won the Peugeot Rally Series. His first world championship event was in the RAC Rally in 1990, and in '93, at 22, he became the youngest British Rally champion. He won the British Rally three years in succession (1998~2000). His first World Championship victory was in the highly demanding Safari Rally in Kenya in 1998. He had 10 victories in the World Championship and won it in 2001 after all the leading contenders had crashed out of the final event under appalling weather conditions. He published an autobiography, Driving Ambition (2002). He died of cancer in England on November 25, 2005

Frank Gatski (83) Hall of Fame center and a powerful blocker who played in 10 straight championship games for the Cleveland Browns. Gatski played alongside former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Chuck Noll and snapped the ball to Hall of Fame quarterback Otto Graham. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985 with a class that included Joe Namath, Pete Rozelle, O. J. Simpson, and Roger Staubach. Gatski died of congestive heart failure in Grant Town, West Virginia on November 23, 2005.

Bruce Hobbs (84) youngest jockey ever to ride the winner of the British Grand National (Battleship in 1938). The American-born Hobbs forced up the 40-1 outsider on the post to beat Royal Danieli by a head and won the Welsh Grand National, then went to the US, where he made history by becoming the first jockey to win three Grand Nationals in one year. He died in Newmarket, Suffolk, England on November 21, 2005.

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