KSTP Year in Review: Notable Figures We Lost in 2017

Mary Tyler Moore Photo: AP/File
Mary Tyler Moore

December 31, 2017 07:56 PM

They made music that inspired legions of fans.

 

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Rock 'n' roll founding fathers Chuck Berry and Fats Domino, rockers Tom Petty and Gregg Allman, grunge icon Chris Cornell, country superstar Glen Campbell and jazz great Al Jarreau were among the notable figures who died in 2017, leaving a void in virtually every genre of music.

 

Comedians Jerry Lewis, Don Rickles and Dick Gregory left their own indelible mark with their iconic routines. And the story of the 1960s could not be told without Hugh Hefner and Charles Manson, who were synonymous with the decade in vastly different ways.
           
Hefner founded Playboy magazine and was credited with helping rev up the sexual revolution in the 1960s. The decade ended with Manson becoming the face of evil across America by orchestrating seven murders that marked the end of the era of peace and love.
           
Among the political figures who died this year was Helmut Kohl, the German chancellor who reunited a nation divided by the Cold War and helped put Germany at the heart of a unified Europe. Others from the political arena who died in 2017 included former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega.


           
Entertainers who died in 2017 also included actors Roger Moore of James Bond fame, Bollywood star Reema Lagoo, "Batman" actor Adam West and Mary Tyler Moore. Prominent figures from the sporting world who died included Pittsburgh Steelers chairman Dan Rooney, former Notre Dame coach Ara Parseghian and boxer Jake LaMotta.

 

RELATED: Mary Tyler Moore Dead at Age 80

 

Here is a roll call of some of the people who died in 2017. (Cause of death cited for younger people, if available.) 

JANUARY:

Sister Frances Carr, 89. One of the last remaining members of a nearly extinct religious society called the Shakers. Jan. 2.

Bud Lilly, 91. Fly fishing legend, conservationist and catch-and-release pioneer. Jan. 4.
 
Jill Saward, 51. A survivor of rape who became a powerful British campaigner against sexual violence. Jan. 5.
           
Mario Soares, 92. A former prime minister and president of Portugal who helped steer his country toward democracy after a 1974 military coup and grew into a global statesman through his work with the Socialist International movement. Jan. 7.
           
Parker Beam, 75. He carried on his family's historic bourbon-making tradition as longtime master distiller for Kentucky-based Heaven Hill Distilleries. Jan. 9.
           
Clare Hollingworth, 105. A British war correspondent who was the first to report the Nazi invasion of Poland that marked the beginning of World War II. Jan. 10.
           
Michael Chamberlain, 72. He waged a decades-long battle to prove his baby daughter was killed by a dingo in Australia's most notorious case of injustice. Jan. 9.
           
Steven McDonald, 59. A New York police detective who was paralyzed by a teenage gunman's bullet in 1986 but publicly forgave the shooter and became an international voice for peace. Jan. 10.
           
Tommy Allsup, 85. A guitarist best known for losing a coin toss that kept him off a plane that later crashed and killed rock 'n' roll stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. "Big Bopper" Richardson. Jan. 11. Complications from a hernia operation.
           
William Peter Blatty, 89. A former Jesuit school valedictorian who conjured a tale of demonic possession and gave millions the fright of their lives with the best-selling novel and Oscar-winning movie "The Exorcist." Jan. 12.
           
Dick Gautier, 85. The actor who gained fame playing an Elvis-like singer in the Broadway musical "Bye Bye Birdie" and went on to play Hymie the Robot on TV's "Get Smart." Jan. 13.
           
Zhou Youguang, 111. A linguist considered the father of modern China's Pinyin Romanization system. Jan. 14.
           
Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka, 73. A former pro wrestler who had recently been found not competent to stand trial in the 1983 death of his girlfriend. Jan. 15.
           
Vlado Trifunovic, 78. A former Yugoslav army general whose treason conviction by Serbia's wartime nationalist leadership became a symbol of the senselessness of the 1990s' Balkan conflict. Jan. 15.
           
Gene Cernan, 82. A former astronaut who was the last person to walk on the moon. Jan. 16.
           
Charlie Liteky, 85. An Army chaplain in Vietnam who was awarded the Medal of Honor for rescuing more than 20 wounded men but later gave it back in protest and became a peace activist. Jan. 20.
           
Masaya Nakamura, 91. The "Father of Pac-Man" who founded the Japanese video game company behind the hit creature-gobbling game. Jan. 22.
           
Butch Trucks, 69. A drummer who was one of the founding members of the Southern rock legend The Allman Brothers Band. Jan. 24. Suicide.
           
Mary Tyler Moore, 80. The star of TV's beloved "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" whose comic realism helped revolutionize the depiction of women on the small screen. Jan. 25.
           
Mike Connors, 91. He starred as a hard-hitting private eye on the long-running television series "Mannix." Jan. 26.
           
Barbara Hale, 94. A movie actress who found her most famous role on television as steadfast secretary Della Street in the long-running "Perry Mason" series. Jan. 26.
           
John Hurt, 77. An actor who had a half-century career highlighted with memorable performances, two Oscar nominations, a Golden Globe and four British BAFTA awards. Jan. 27.
           
FEBRUARY:
           
Edward Tipper, 95. A World War II paratrooper who was portrayed in the HBO series "Band of Brothers." Feb. 1.
           
Etienne Tshisekedi, 84. Congo's opposition icon who pushed for democratic reforms for decades in the vast Central African nation throughout dictatorship and civil war. Feb 1.
           
Don McNelly, 96. He was known worldwide for powering through marathon runs and running up record totals into his 70s and 80s. Feb. 5.
           
Irwin Corey, 102. The wild-haired comedian and actor known for his improvisational riffs and nonsensical style who billed himself as "The World's Foremost Authority." Feb. 6.
           
Alec McCowen, 91. A West End and Broadway star who had global success with a one-man show about the life of Jesus. Feb. 6.
           
Ljubisa Beara, 77. A former senior Bosnian Serb security officer convicted of genocide by a U.N. war crimes tribunal for the 1995 Srebrenica massacre. Feb. 8.
           
Peter Mansfield, 83. A physicist who won the Nobel Prize for helping to invent MRI scanners. Feb. 8.
           
Mike Ilitch, 87. The billionaire businessman who founded the Little Caesars pizza empire before buying the Detroit Red Wings and the Detroit Tigers. Feb. 10.

RELATED: Detroit Tigers, Red Wings Owner Mike Ilitch Dies at Age 87
           
Harold G. "Hal" Moore, 94. The American hero known for saving most of his men in the first major battle between the U.S. and North Vietnamese armies. Feb. 10.
           
Al Jarreau, 76. A Grammy-winning jazz singer who transcended genres over a 50-year career. Feb. 12.
           
Norma McCorvey, 69. Her legal challenge under the pseudonym "Jane Roe" led to the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark decision that legalized abortion but who later became an outspoken opponent of the procedure. Feb. 18.
           
Omar Abdel-Rahman, 78. The so-called Blind Sheik convicted of plotting terror attacks in New York City in the decade before 9/11 and spiritual guide to a generation of Islamic militants. Feb. 18. Died in federal prison.
           
Sofia Imber, 92. She turned a garage into the Caracas Museum of Contemporary Art and became one of Venezuela's most influential women journalists. Feb. 20.
           
Kenneth J. Arrow, 95. The youngest-ever winner of a Nobel prize for economics, whose theories on risk, innovation and the basic mathematics of markets have influenced thinking on everything from voting to health insurance to high finance. Feb. 21.
           
Alan Colmes, 66. The radio and television host and commentator best known as the amiable liberal foil to the hard-right Sean Hannity on the Fox News Channel. Feb. 23.
           
William "Bud" Liebenow, 97. The WWII Navy officer who guided his warship into Japanese territory to rescue future President John F. Kennedy and his crew. Feb. 24.
           
Bill Paxton, 61. A prolific and charismatic actor who had memorable roles in such blockbusters as "Apollo 13" and "Titanic" while also cherishing his work in "One False Move" and other low-budget movies and in the HBO series "Big Love." Feb. 25. Complications due to surgery.
           
Joseph Wapner, 97. The retired Los Angeles judge who presided over "The People's Court" with steady force during the heyday of the reality courtroom show. Feb. 26.
           
MARCH:
           
Paula Fox, 93. A prize-winning author who created high art out of imagined chaos in such novels as "Poor George" and "Desperate Characters" and out of the real-life upheavals in her memoir "Borrowed Finery." March 1.
           
Rene Preval, 74. A low-key technocrat who led Haiti as president during the devastating January 2010 earthquake and a messy and prolonged recovery. March 3.
           
Miriam Colon, 80. A pioneering actress in U.S. Latino New York theater who starred in films alongside Marlon Brando and Al Pacino. March 3.
           
Mother Divine, believed to be 92. The widow of Father Divine and leader for decades of a religious movement he founded that advocated racial equality and provided free food to thousands of people. March 4.
           
Robert Osborne, 84. The genial face of Turner Classic Movies and a walking encyclopedia of classic Hollywood. March 6.
           
Lynne F. Stewart, 77. A rebellious civil rights lawyer who was sentenced to a decade behind bars for helping a notorious Egyptian terrorist communicate with followers from his U.S. jail cell. March 7. Cancer.
           
George A. Olah, 89. His work won a Nobel Prize in chemistry and paved the way for more effective oil refining and ways of producing less polluting forms of gasoline. March 8.
           
Joseph Nicolosi, 70. A psychologist and major figure in the "ex-gay" movement that promotes a therapy designed to "cure" people of their homosexuality. March 8.
           
Robert James Waller, 77. His best-selling, bittersweet 1992 romance novel "The Bridges of Madison County" was turned into a movie starring Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood and later into a soaring Broadway musical. March 10.
           
Joni Sledge, 60. With her sisters, she recorded the enduring dance anthem "We Are Family."  March 10.
           
Amy Krouse Rosenthal, 51. A popular author, filmmaker and speaker who brightened lives with her wide-eyed and generous spirit - and broke hearts when she wrote of being terminally ill and leaving behind her husband. March 13.
           
Royal Robbins, 82. A rock climbing icon who founded the outdoor clothing company bearing his name. March 14.
           
Carl Clark, 100. A California man who was recognized six decades after his bravery during World War II with a medal of honor that had been denied because he was black. March 16.
           
Chuck Berry, 90. He was rock 'n' roll's founding guitar hero and storyteller who defined the music's joy and rebellion in such classics as "Johnny B. Goode," ''Sweet Little Sixteen" and "Roll Over Beethoven." March 18.
           
Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, 84. He ministered clandestinely to Catholics for years while officially working as a window-washer during communist rule in Czechoslovakia. March 18.
           
David Rockefeller, 101. The billionaire businessman and philanthropist who was the last in his generation of one of the country's most famously philanthropic families. March 20.
           
Martin McGuinness, 66. The Irish Republican Army commander who led his underground paramilitary movement toward reconciliation with Britain. March 21.
           
Chuck Barris, 87. His game show empire included "The Dating Game," ''The Newlywed Game" and that infamous factory of cheese, "The Gong Show." March 21.
           
Colin Dexter, 86. The unassuming British writer who created curmudgeonly, music-loving Oxford detective Inspector Morse. March 21.
           
Jerry Krause, 77. The general manager of the Bulls during a 1990s dynasty that included six NBA championships with Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen.
           
Francine Wilson, 69. Her trial for killing her abusive husband became a landmark spousal abuse case and the subject of the 1984 TV movie "The Burning Bed." March 22. Complications from pneumonia.
           
Ahmed Kathrada, 87. An anti-apartheid leader who spent 26 years in prison for opposing South Africa's white minority government - much of that time alongside the country's first black president, Nelson Mandela. March 28.
           
Gilbert Baker, 65. The creator of the rainbow flag that has become a widely recognized symbol of gay rights. March 31.
           
APRIL:
           
Yevgeny A. Yevtushenko, 84. An acclaimed Russian poet whose work focused on war atrocities and denounced anti-Semitism and tyrannical dictators. April 1.
           
Lonnie Brooks, 83. A Chicago blues musician whose relationship with his adopted hometown was cemented by his hit recording of Robert Johnson's "Sweet Home Chicago." April 1.
           
Ikutaro Kakehashi, 87. The Japanese engineer who pioneered digital music and founded synthesizer giant Roland Corp. April 1.
           
Paul O'Neill, 61. He founded the progressive metal band Trans-Siberian Orchestra that was known for its spectacular holiday concerts filled with theatrics, lasers and pyrotechnics. April 5.
           
Don Rickles, 90. The big-mouthed, bald-headed comedian whose verbal assaults endeared him to audiences and peers and made him the acknowledged grandmaster of insult comedy. April 6.
           
J. Geils, 71. He was founder of The J. Geils Band known for such peppy early 80s pop hits as "Love Stinks," ''Freeze Frame" and "Centerfold." April 11.
           
Dorothy Mengering, 95. The mother of host David Letterman, she became an unlikely celebrity in her 70s as she baked mystery pies and covered the Olympics for her son's late-night show. April 11.
           
Dan Rooney, 84. The powerful and popular Pittsburgh Steelers chairman whose name is attached to the NFL's landmark initiative in minority hiring. April 13.
           
Robert W. Taylor, 85. He was instrumental in creating the internet and the modern personal computer. April 13.
           
Aaron Hernandez, 27. The former New England Patriots tight end was sentenced to life behind bars for a 2013 murder and committed suicide in prison. April 19.
           
Jay Dickey, 77. A four-term Arkansas congressman who sponsored a bill to prevent certain research on gun violence and its effect on public health - and who later said he regretted the law. April 20.
           
Erin Moran, 56. The former child star who played Joanie Cunningham in the sitcoms "Happy Days" and "Joanie Loves Chachi." April 22. Cancer.
           
Robert M. Pirsig, 88. His philosophical novel "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" became a million-selling classic and cultural touchstone after more than 100 publishers turned it down. April 24.
           
Jonathan Demme, 73. The eclectic, ever-enthusiastic filmmaker behind the Oscar winners "The Silence of the Lambs" and "Philadelphia," and the director of one of the most seminal concert films ever made, the Talking Heads' "Stop Making Sense." April 26.

RELATED: Jonathan Demme, 'Silence of the Lambs' Director, Dead at 73
           
Richard "Racehorse" Haynes, 90. A Houston lawyer famed for his flamboyant but successful trial defenses of millionaire and billionaire clients in some of Texas' most notorious murder cases. April 28.
           
MAY:
           
Tony Alamo, 82. A one-time street preacher whose apocalyptic ministry grew into a multimillion-dollar network of businesses and property before he was convicted in Arkansas of sexually abusing young girls he considered his wives. May 2. Died in prison.
           
Heinz Kessler, 97. A former East German defense minister who was later convicted of incitement to manslaughter for upholding the shoot-to-kill policy at the communist country's border. May 2.
           
Leo K. Thorsness, 85. The retired Air Force colonel was a highly decorated Vietnam War pilot who was shot down and held for six years at the notorious "Hanoi Hilton" prisoner camp, where he shared a cell with U.S. Sen. John McCain. May 4.
           
Allan H. Meltzer, 89. A distinguished economist and one of the country's leading experts on the Federal Reserve. May 8.
           
Mauno Koivisto, 93. Finland's last president during the Cold War who led the Nordic nation out of the shadow of its huge eastern neighbor, the Soviet Union, and into the European Union. May 12.
           
Powers Boothe, 68. The character actor known for his villain roles in TV's "Deadwood," and in the movies "Tombstone," ''Sin City" and "The Avengers." May 14.
           
Ian Brady, 79. A killer of five children whose role in the 1960s "Moors Murders" made him one of Britain's most reviled criminals. May 15.
           
Oleg Vidov, 73. A matinee idol in the Soviet Union who defected to the United States at the height of the Cold War and then enjoyed a long film and TV career in Hollywood. May 15.
           
Chris Cornell, 52. A rocker who gained fame as the lead singer of the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave and was one of the leading voices of the 1990s grunge movement. May 17. Suspected suicide.
           
Roger Ailes, 77. He transformed TV news by creating Fox News Channel, only to be ousted at the height of his reign for alleged sexual harassment. May 18.
           
Reema Lagoo, 59. The Bollywood actress was the ever-smiling screen mother to some of India's top actors. May 18. Cardiac arrest.
           
Stanislav Petrov, 77. A former Soviet military officer known in the West as "the man who saved the world" for his role in averting a nuclear war over a false missile warning at the height of the Cold War. May 19.
           
Dina Merrill, 93. The rebellious heiress who defied her super-rich parents to become a movie star, often portraying stylish wives or "the other woman."  May 22.
           
Roger Moore, 89. The suavely insouciant star of seven James Bond films. May 23.
           
Patti Upton, 79. She founded the multimillion-dollar home fragrance company Aromatique thanks to a popular homemade mix of pine cones, oils and spices she concocted to help a friend's shop "smell like Christmas." May 23.
           
Cortez Kennedy, 48.  The Hall of Fame defensive tackle was a dominating force for the Seattle Seahawks in the 1990s. May 23.
           
Laura Biagiotti, 73. An Italian fashion designer who conquered global markets with her soft, loose women's clothes and luxurious knits that won her the nickname "Queen of Cashmere." May 26.
           
Jim Bunning, 85. A Hall of Fame pitcher who went on to serve in Congress. May 26.
           
Gregg Allman, 69. A music legend whose bluesy vocals and soulful touch on the Hammond B-3 organ helped propel The Allman Brothers Band to superstardom and spawn Southern rock. May 27. Cancer.
           
Manuel Noriega, 83. A former Panamanian dictator and onetime U.S. ally who was ousted as Panama's dictator by an American invasion in 1989. May 29.
           
Constantine Mitsotakis, 98. A former conservative prime minister remembered for fierce confrontations with Greece's liberal and socialist parties as well as early free-market reforms during a 60-year political career. May 29.
           
Reinhold Hanning, 95. A former SS sergeant whose 2016 conviction on 170,000 counts of accessory to murder for serving as an Auschwitz guard was hailed as a long-overdue victory for Holocaust victims. May 30.
           
JUNE:
           
Jim Piersall, 87. A former major leaguer who bared his soul about his struggles with mental illness in his book "Fear Strikes Out." June 3.
           
Peter Sallis, 96. A British actor who played irrepressible, cheese-loving inventor Wallace in the "Wallace and Gromit" cartoons. June 2.
           
Donald Vidrine, 69. One of two BP supervisors on the Deepwater Horizon when the drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. June 3.
           
Roger Smith, 84. He brought glamour to the TV detective genre as a hip private eye on "77 Sunset Strip." June 4.
           
Adnan Khashoggi, 81. A Saudi arms dealer who was once one of the world's richest men and was implicated in the Iran-Contra affair. June 6.
           
Glenne Headly, 62. An early member of the acclaimed Steppenwolf Theatre Company who went on to star in films and on TV. June 8.
           
Adam West, 88. His straight-faced portrayal of Batman in a campy 1960s TV series lifted the tight-clad Caped Crusader into the national consciousness. June 9.

Otto Warmbier, 22. An American college studen

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