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Life In Legacy - Week ending September 20, 2014

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Polly Bergen, Emmy-winning actress and singerIsidoro Alvarez, led Spanish department store chainTony Auth, ‘Philadelphia Inquirer’ editorial cartoonistMary Lea Bandy, director of film department at MoMARob Bironas, Tennessee Titans kickerThomas Hale Boggs Jr., prominent Washington, DC lobbyistJackie Cain, female half of Jackie & Roy jazz duoMilton Cardona, salsa percussionistHerb Chesbrough, headed upstate New York performing arts centerJ. California Cooper, playwright turned novelist and short-story writerGeorge Hamilton IV, country music singerPati Hill, author and photocopier artistGen. Yitzhak Hofi, Israeli general Oleg Ivanovsky, Russian engineer who designed early spacecraftKamara James, Olympic fencerDavid Jones, florist to the rich and famousDr. Guinter Kahn, part of medical team that discovered baldness remedyJoel Krog, ‘50s SMU basketball standoutRev. Gerald A. Larue, minister who became agnosticAngus Lennie, British film and TV actorWilliam Lopez, freed after wrongfully serving 23 years in prisonEric Lynch, known to fans of Howard Stern’s radio showJoseph McNamara, former San Jose police chiefRandy Pike, Missouri state legislatorRobert E. Poli, former president of air traffic controllers’ unionWill Radcliff, father of ‘Slush Puppie’ drinksVince Scoper, Mississippi state legislatorU. Shrinivas, Indian mandolin virtuosoGeorge Sluizer, Dutch filmmaker who directed River Phoenix’s last filmRichard F. Thompson, USC neuroscientistRudolph Waters, fixture at Alcorn State University in MississippiKenny Wheeler, Canadian jazz trumpeter

Art and Literature

Tony Auth (72) Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist whose commentary had appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer since 1971. Auth won the Pulitzer for editorial cartoons in 1976 and was a finalist twice after that. He had been battling brain cancer and died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on September 14, 2014.

Mary Lea Bandy (71) director of the film department (1994-2006) at New York’s Museum of Modern Art who played a major role in the recovery and preservation of thousands of important films. Bandy never fully recovered from viral encephalitis contracted in 2005. She died of pulmonary and cardiac arrest in White Plains, New York on September 20, 2014.

J. California Cooper (82) writer who was writing plays until Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker (The Color Purple) suggested she switch to short stories and novels because they were easier to sell. Cooper wrote more than a dozen plays and had about a dozen books published after switching to prose fiction. She died after suffering several heart attacks over the years, in Seattle, Washington on September 20, 2014.

Pati Hill (93) Kentucky-born author of fiction in the ‘50s and ’60s who later turned to visual art with images made from an IBM photocopier. Hill died in Sens, France on September 19, 2014.

Business and Science

Isidoro Alvarez (79) head of Spain’s El Corte Ingles department store chain who turned the company into an international business with an annual turnover of about €14 billion ($18 billion). Alvarez worked at El Corte Ingles for 60 years and was its chairman for the past 25; under his leadership, the clothing store diversified and expanded abroad. He was hospitalized last week with respiratory problems and died in Madrid, Spain on September 14, 2014.

David Jones (78) Hollywood florist who for 50 years adorned the grand social affairs of famous clients who included Eleanor Roosevelt, Mamie Eisenhower, Jacqueline Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor, Michael Jackson, and the Reagans, Paleys, and Bloomingdales. Jones died of bone cancer in Los Angeles, California on September 17, 2014.

Dr. Guinter Kahn (80) German-born dermatologist whose name in 1986 was added to the first US patent ever granted for a baldness remedy, minoxidil, sold under the brand name Rogaine. Kahn suffered a stroke in 2006 and died in Miami, Florida on September 17, 2014.

Will Radcliff (74) salesman who built a multimillion-dollar global business from flavored, icy “Slush Puppie” drinks. Radcliff’s health had been declining in recent weeks after a fall. He died in Cincinnati, Ohio on September 18, 2014.


Richard F. Thompson (84) USC neuroscientist who in the ‘80s proved that Pavlov’s conditioned response is physically formed and "hard-wired" in the brain. Thompson had been suffering from congestive heart failure and had a recent fall. He died 10 days after his 84th birthday, in Nipomo, California on September 16, 2014.

Rudolph Waters (82) former interim president (1994-95) of Alcorn State University in Lorman, Miss. A longtime dean and vice president, Waters worked at Alcorn for 48 years, starting as dean of students in 1957. He died in Vicksburg, Mississippi on September 14, 2014.

News and Entertainment

Polly Bergen (84) Emmy-winning actress and singer who won for portraying tragic singer Helen Morgan on the famed anthology series Playhouse 90 in 1958. Bergen also played the terrorized wife in the original Cape Fear (1962) and the first woman president in Kisses for My President (1964). She was a household name from her 20s onward, recording albums and playing leading roles in films, stage musicals, and TV dramas. She also hosted her own variety series, was a popular game show panelist, and founded a thriving beauty products company that bore her name. In recent years she played Felicity Huffman’s mother on Desperate Housewives and former mistress of Tony Soprano’s late father on The Sopranos. Polly Bergen died in Southbury, Connecticut on September 20, 2014.

Jackie Cain (86) female half of Jackie & Roy, one of the most enduring Jazz duos, a married couple who released more than 30 albums and delighted cabaret audiences for over 50 years. Cain was known for her swinging blend of bop and ballads. The pair were also among the early adopters of “vocalese”—scat singing to jazz instrumentals. Pianist Roy Kral died in 2002. Jackie Cain died in Montclair, New Jersey on September 15, 2014.

Milton Cardona (69) Puerto Rican-born percussionist, a mainstay of New York salsa, a studio conga drummer on hundreds of albums, and a Santeria priest who introduced sacred traditional rhythms to secular audiences. Cardona died of heart failure in the Bronx, New York on September 19, 2014.

Herb Chesbrough (67) former longtime director (1978-2004) of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center credited with turning it into a top summer entertainment venue. Chesbrough was forced out in 2004 after he canceled the summer residency of the New York City Ballet, a SPAC mainstay since the venue began in 1967; his unilateral decision was quickly reversed. Chesbrough died of lymphoma in Saratoga Springs, New York on September 16, 2014.

George Hamilton IV (77) country music legend, a star at the Grand Ole Opry for more than 50 years and known as the “International Ambassador of Country Music." Hamilton helped to popularize country music far beyond the US, performing at festivals across Europe. He suffered a heart attack on Sept. 13 and died four days later in Nashville, Tennessee, on September 17, 2014.

Angus Lennie (84) Scottish actor who played the persistent but ultimately despairing “tunnel man” known as the Mole in the 1963 prison-camp movie The Great Escape. Lennie was known in Britain for his appearances on numerous TV series, but especially as Shughie McFee, a self-inflating chef in the kitchen of the motel that was the central setting of a long-running soap opera, Crossroads. He died in London, England on September 14, 2014.

Eric Lynch (39) Sacramento man whose fear of werewolves, love of professional wrestling, and angry, often foul-mouthed rants endeared him to fans of Howard Stern’s radio show for more than 10 years. Lynch, who stood just 3 feet tall and used a wheelchair to get around, had suffered for years from numerous height-related health problems. He died in Sacramento, California on September 19, 2014.

U. Shrinivas (45) Indian virtuoso on the mandolin. Shrinivas used his mandolin to create a personalized style within the rigorous strictures of Indian classical music, becoming a stand-alone star in the process. He died in Chennai, India of complications after a liver transplant, on September 19, 2014.

George Sluizer (82) Dutch filmmaker who directed River Phoenix’s last movie, Dark Blood. The film was only two-thirds complete in 1993 when Phoenix, a rising Hollywood star, died of a drug-induced heart attack at 23. Sluizer suffered from arterial disease and narrowly survived a tear in his aorta in 2007. He died in Amsterdam, The Netherlands on September 20, 2014.

Kenny Wheeler (84) Canadian-born jazz trumpeter, flugelhornist, and composer who was as comfortable improvising with avant-gardists like saxophonist Anthony Braxton as he was writing arrangements for a big band. Wheeler died in London, England on September 18, 2014.

Politics and Military

Thomas Hale Boggs Jr. (73) pioneer in combining the practice of law and lobbying who led the Washington lobbying shop Patton Boggs for many years. Boggs was the son of former US congressman Thomas Hale Boggs Sr. (D-La.), House Majority Leader, and former Rep. Lindy Boggs (d. 2013), elected to her husband’s House seat after he was killed in a 1972 plane crash. Brother of journalist Cokie Roberts, the younger Boggs died of a suspected heart attack in Chevy Chase, Maryland on September 15, 2014.

Gen. Yitzhak Hofi (87) former Israeli general and Mossad chief who played a key role in his country’s daring 1976 commando rescue raid in Uganda. Hofi fought in Israel’s War of Independence in 1948 and rose through the ranks to become head of the northern command during the ‘73 Arab-Israeli war. He died in Jerusalem, Israel on September 14, 2014.

Oleg Ivanovsky (92) Russian engineer in the early years of the space race who helped to design Sputnik, the first satellite to orbit Earth, and Vostok 1 (shown above), the craft that carried astronaut Yuri Gagarin (d. 1968), the first man in space. Ivanovsky died in Moscow, Russia on September 18, 2014.

Joseph McNamara (79) former San Jose police chief (1976-91) whose outspoken criticism of the war on drugs, the gun lobby, and then-Los Angeles police chief Daryl Gates gave him a national profile as a progressive leader in law enforcement. McNamara died of pancreatic cancer in Carmel, California on September 19, 2014.

Randy Pike (60) Missouri State House Republican from Butler. Pike was first elected to the House in 2012 and was running for a second term. He had experienced health troubles since a bout with pneumonia and a vehicle accident earlier this year and had been using a wheelchair. He died after swallowing a drink into his lungs on September 20, 2014.

Robert E. Poli (78) union leader of the 1981 air traffic controllers’ strike, which prompted then-President Ronald Reagan to fire 11,500 controllers. The event is viewed as a pivotal moment in the decline of organized labor. Poli died of kidney and liver failure in Meridian, Idaho on September 15, 2014.

Vince Scoper (81) former Mississippi state senator (1980-84, ‘88-2004) from Laurel. Scoper served in the State House from 1972-80 and was among the first Republicans elected to that chamber since Reconstruction. He died of esophageal cancer in Laurel, Mississippi on September 14, 2014.

Society and Religion

Rev. Gerald A. Larue (98) ordained minister who became an agnostic, archeologist, religious scholar, and debunker of claims such as Lazarus rising from the dead and the discovery of Noah’s ark. A longtime USC professor of religion and gerontology, Larue died after a stroke, in Newport Beach, California on September 17, 2014.

William Lopez (55) New York man freed in 2013 after serving 23 years in prison for a 1989 murder he didn’t commit. Lopez’s $124 million federal civil lawsuit against the city for false imprisonment was set to begin Sept. 23. He died suddenly from an asthma attack, in New York City on September 20, 2014.


Rob Bironas (36) former Tennessee Titans player who worked his way through odd jobs and the Arena Football League before becoming one of the NFL’s most accurate kickers. The Titans released Bironas in March after nine seasons; last June he married Rachel Bradshaw, daughter of Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Terry Bradshaw. Bironas was killed when he lost control on a curve in his 2009 GMC Yukon Denali and crashed less than a mile from home, in Nashville, Tennessee on September 20, 2014.

Kamara James (29) US Olympic fencer. James moved to New York from Jamaica as a child and began fencing in the fifth grade. She won a bronze medal in the 2003 Junior World Championships; at 19 she earned a spot on Team USA at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece while studying at Princeton University but later retired from the sport. James reportedly suffered from mental illness. She died in Modesto, California on September 20, 2014.

Joel Krog (79) captain of Southern Methodist University’s only NCAA Final Four team in 1955-56. Krog averaged 12 points and 9.2 rebounds a game as a senior, when the Mustangs were 26-4 and reached the 1956 Final Four. SMU lost to eventual champion San Francisco, 86-68, in a semifinal. Krog died in Houston, Texas on September 20, 2014.

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