Remembering the Stars We've Lost in 2020

Keith Hufnagel

After a two-and-a-half year battle with brain cancer, Hufnagel, the legendary skateboarder and founder of HUF Worldwide, has died. He was 46.

HUF Worldwide announced the news in a statement on Instagram on Sept. 24. “Though he beat the odds and fought back much longer than his diagnosis permitted, he ultimately and unfortunately lost the fight,” the statement read.

“Keith was not only the ‘HUF’nagel in HUF. He was the heart and soul of this brand. He built and brought together a community of people like no one else could,” the statement continued, saying that the star “paved the way for all of us – as a respected professional skateboarder, shop owner, brand founder, footwear and apparel designer, creative director, and industry leader. He showed us how to do it, and how do it right.”

The statement concluded by saying that Hufnagel’s “legacy will continue to live on at HUF. Today, tomorrow and forever. Rest in peace, Keith.”

Hufnagel is survived by his wife Mariellen and their two children.

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Michael Lonsdale

The actor, who portrayed Hugo Drax in the James Bond film Moonraker, has died, his agent told the AFP. He was 89.

Lonsdale was perhaps best known for the 1979 Bond film, as well as his role as detective Claude Lebel in the 1973 film The Day of the Jackal

The star was remembered by the team behind the James Bond franchise, screenwriter Michael G. Wilson and producer Barbara Broccoli on Twitter.

“We are very sad to learn of the passing of Michael Lonsdale, who played Hugo Drax in Moonraker. He was an extraordinarily talented actor and a very dear friend. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time,” they said in a statement shared to the James Bond Twitter account on Sept. 22.

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Pamela Hutchinson

The Emotions’ singer has died at 61.

On the morning of Sept. 20, the soul group announced on Facebook that Hutchinson had died the Friday prior after battling health challenges for several years.

“In loving memory, we are saddened to announce the passing of our sister, Pamela Rose Hutchinson, on Friday, September 18, 2020,” the group — now comprising sisters Wanda and Sheila — wrote. “Pam succumbed to health challenges that she’d been battling for several years. Now our beautiful sister will sing amongst the angels in heaven in perfect peace.”

“During this time, the family kindly asks for fans and friends to respect our privacy,” the announcement continued. “We appreciate all kind words, photos, and videos you may want to post for our beloved Pamela and of course your loving prayers. A life so beautifully lived deserves to be beautifully remembered. We love you, Pamela!”

The Emotions has always been comprised of the Hutchinson sisters, but Pamela replaced older sister Jeanette when she left the group.

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Christopher ‘Kentucky’ Ellis


The Street Outlaws star has died at the age of 39. He was found dead at his home in Oklahoma City on September 9.

Authorities discovered Ellis in his home surrounded by a liquor bottle and a syringe “with a small amount of dark liquid inside it consistent with heroin,” an incident report obtained by PEOPLE said.

Ellis’ roommate and two friends told police that they had not heard from him for two days, according to the report. The roommate told authorities that he had previously tried checking up on Ellis, but his door was closed and locked.

The two friends told police that they were aware Ellis had struggled with alcohol and drug use, the report said.

Police said that foul play was not suspected, and that the medical examiner responded to the scene.

TMZ was first to report the news of Ellis’ death. An initial autopsy was inconclusive and a toxicology report is pending, TMZ reported.

A spokesperson for the Oklahoma Office of the Chief Medical Examiner did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

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Sei Ashina

The Japanese actress, known for her role in 2007’s Silk, was found dead in her Tokyo apartment on Sept. 14, her management company confirmed in a statement. She was 36.

Ashina’s death was confirmed to be an apparent suicide by Tokyo police, according to Variety. The outlet reported she was discovered by her brother after she stopped responding to messages and phone calls. 

Ashina, who began her career as a model, first began acting in 2002, with the series The Talk of Happiness, known as Shiawase no Shippo, in Japan. She continued to land roles in a number of Japanese films and TV shows, including Yae’s Sakura and the police drama Aibo.

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Toots Hibbert

The reggae icon has died. He was 77.

Hibbert died in Jamaica on September 11, according to a statement released on social media by his band, Toots and The Maytals.

“It is with the heaviest of hearts to announce that Frederick Nathaniel ‘Toots’ Hibbert passed away peacefully tonight, surrounded by his family at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica,” the statement read, which noted that Hibbert, the frontman of the group, is survived by his wife of 39 years, Miss D, and their children.

Although a cause of death has not yet been revealed, the band tweeted on Aug. 31 to confirm reports that the singer was in an intensive care unit awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test. Several days later, they shared that he was still receiving care at the hospital but was in “stable condition.”

Hibbert is widely credited as a pioneer for the reggae genre — his 1986 song, “Do the Reggay,” is even said to be the origin of genre’s name. Some of his other hits include “Pressure Drop,” “Monkey Man” and “Funky Kingston.”

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Stevie Lee

The Professional wrestler, who went by the name Puppet The Psycho Dwarf in the ring, has died. He was 54.

Lee’s family confirmed the news on a GoFundMe page, revealing that the athlete “unexpectedly passed away” at his home the morning of September 9.

“He was beloved by many and has many friends that were family, fans that adored him, but only his brother Jim left to take care of final arrangements,” the statement read. “Puppet has put smiles across the world with his hardcore attitude and lifestyle.”

Donations from the GoFundMe page will go to Lee’s brother, Jim Richardson, for funeral costs.

Lee began his wrestling career on the series NWA: Total Nonstop Action in 2002. He also created the Half-Pint Brawlers organization which earned its own reality series, Half-Pint Brawlers, on Spike TV in 2010, according to Deadline.

“He is a legend in the art of Midget Wrestling,” the GoFundMe page read. “He needs our help to give him one last curtain call.”

Born Stevie Lee Richardson, the wrestler also appeared as himself in Johnny Knoxville’s 2010 film, Jackass 3D. He also had credits in Oz the Great and Powerful and American Horror Story: Freak Show.

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Aaron Grissom

The chef, who competed on the 12th season of Top Chef, has died at the age of 34.

Grisson passed away on Sept. 8 after suffering “multiple blunt force injuries” in a traffic accident, according to the Pierce County medical examiner. His death was ruled as an accident.

He was involved in a motorcycle accident near Chambers Bay in Washington, Yu Nanakornphanom, who owned Moshi Moshi ramen bar where Grissom previously worked as head chef, told The News Tribune.

Grissom had selflessly given his kidney to Nanakornphanom when the restaurant first opened, the eatery owner told the paper.

“Bravo and the Top Chef family are saddened to learn about the passing of Chef Aaron Grissom from Season 12: Boston,” a representative for the network told PEOPLE in a statement. “Our deepest sympathy goes out to his family and friends.”

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Diana Rigg

The award-winning British actress died on Sept. 10. She was 82.

“She died peacefully early this morning,” her agent told the BBC. “She was at home with her family who have asked for privacy at this difficult time.”

Rigg was catapulted to fame as the witty, seductive spy Emma Peel on the British cult series The Avengers in the 1960s, which earned her two Emmy nominations. She gained a new legion of fans decades later as the brilliantly wicked Lady Olenna Tyrell on HBO’s Game of Thrones from 2013 to 2017, which earned her Emmy nominations in 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Rigg also played Bond girl Tracy Draco in 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the first and only appearance of George Lazenby as 007. Rigg’s character was the only Bond girl ever to marry the spy, but was promptly killed off in the movie’s finale.

Rigg was diagnosed with cancer in March, her daughter Rachael Stirling told The Hollywood Reporter. Stirling told the outlet she “spent her last months joyfully reflecting on her extraordinary life, full of love, laughter and a deep pride in her profession.”

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Xavier Ortiz

Xavier Ortiz, former member of Mexican group Garibaldi, died on Sept. 7. He was 48.

Ortiz’s Garibaldi bandmate Sergio Mayer tweeted the news of his death. Hours later, Mexican newspaper Reforma reported that Ortiz died by suicide at his Guadalajara, Jalisco home.

“With profound sadness and great pain, I inform you of the death of my loved brother and great bandmate of the Garibaldi group and actor, Xavier Ortiz,” wrote Mayer on Twitter. “My sincere condolences to his family, friends and the artistic community.”

Ortiz was one of the original members of Garibaldi, whose lineup comprised of Ortiz, Mayer, Paty Manterola, Charlie López, Pilar Montenegro, Luisa Fernanda Lozano, Katia Llamos and Victor Noriega. The group rose to fame in the early ’90s.

Following his work with the group, Ortiz went on to act in several telenovelas, in the 2005 film Journey from the Fall and in theater with Aventurera.

He shared an 8-year-old son named Xavi with ex-wife Carisa de León, to whom he was married for four years.

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Lou Brock

The St. Louis Cardinals legend and two-time World Series champion died on Sept. 6 at age 81.

Brock was known as “baseball’s most dangerous player for more than a decade” during his tenure with the Cardinals during the 1960s and ’70s, according to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. He helped the Cardinals win World Series titles in 1964 and 1967, and enjoyed a storied career in the MLB that lasted until his retirement in 1979.

“Lou was among the game’s most exciting players, becoming the 14th player in history to reach 3,000 hits and holding Baseball’s all-time record for stolen bases in a season and career for many years,” MLB commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. said in a statement. “He was known for his dominant performances in his three career World Series. Lou was an outstanding representative of our National Pastime and he will be deeply missed.”

A cause of death for Brock has not yet been publicly announced.

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Kevin Dobson

The actor, known for his roles on the 1970s series Kojak and the 1980s series Knot’s Landing, died on Sept. 6 from “medical complications,” the United Veteran’s Council of San Joaquin County, of which Dobson was former chairman, said in a Facebook post. He was 77.

“The United Veterans Council regrets to inform you that our former Chairman and Army Veteran Kevin Dobson passed away this evening Sunday September 6th, 2020 due to medical complications,” the statement said. “Our condolences to his family and May he Rest In Peace.”

The following day, the council shared another tribute to Dobson, including several photos from throughout his career.

“Army Veteran, Veterans Rights Activist, Film and Television Actor Kevin Dobson has passed away. He was 77 Years Old. Condolences to the entire family. Rest In Peace…” the post said.

Dobson is survived by his wife Susan, children Mariah, Patrick and Sean, and several grandchildren.

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Bruce Williamson

The Temptations’ former lead singer died on Sept. 6 at his Las Vegas home after battling coronavirus, TMZ reported. He was 49.

“There’s no words in the world that can express how I feel right now,” his son Bruce wrote on Facebook. “I love you Daddy thank you for being awesome thank you for being loving thank you for being Who You Are I pray to God and we will meet again, I love you Daddy R.I.H KING WILLIAMSON.”

The singer joined The Temptations in 2006 and continued with the group through 2015. After leaving the group, Williamson sang soul music. He was set to perform on Sept. 12 at a pay-per-view concert.

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Cliff Robinson

The All-Star athlete known as “Uncle Cliffy,” who played 18 seasons in the NBA, has died at the age of 53. A cause of death was not immediately released. 

Robinson played for the Portland Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors and the New Jersey Nets. The forward/center was named to the All-Star game in 1994 and won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1993.

The 6’10” star is an alumnus of the University of Connecticut. After college, he was a second-round draft pick for the Blazers.

After retiring in 2007, Robinson remained in the public eye and traveled to the Philippines to compete on Survivor: Cagayan in 2013.

Robinson is survived by his wife of 17 years, Heather, and a son, Isaiah.

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Chadwick Boseman

Boseman died on Aug. 28.

“Chadwick was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016, and battled with it these last 4 years as it progressed to stage IV,” his family confirmed on social media.

“A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all, and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much. From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and several more, all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy,” they said.⁣ “It was the honor of his career to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther. ⁣He died in his home, with his wife and family by his side.”

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Justin Townes Earle

Singer Justin Townes Earle, who was the son of singer Steve Earle, died on Aug. 23, 2020 at 38 years old. His cause of death was not made immediately known. 

Earle’s family confirmed his death in a statement on Instagram and Facebook, sharing, “It is with tremendous sadness that we inform you of the passing of our son, husband, father and friend Justin.”

“So many of you have relied on his music and lyrics over the years and we hope that his music will continue to guide you on your journeys. You will be missed dearly Justin 💔,” the family said.

The statement concluded with a lyric from Earle’s 2014 song “Looking for a Place to Land” from his Absent Fathers record: “I’ve crossed oceans/ Fought freezing rain and blowing sand/ I’ve crossed lines and roads and wondering rivers/ Just looking for a place to land.”

Earle is survived by his wife, Jenn Marie and their 3-year-old daughter Etta St. James. 

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Jack Sherman

Jack Sherman, an early guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, has died. He was 64, and a cause of death has not been determined. 

“We of the RHCP family would like to wish Jack Sherman smooth sailing into the worlds beyond, for he has passed,” the group wrote in a statement posted on Instagram on Aug. 22. 

“Jack played on our debut album as well as our first tour of the USA. He was a unique dude and we thank him for all times good, bad and in between. Peace on the boogie platform,” they added.

Sherman also worked as a session musician for Bob Dylan, Tonio K and George Clinton, over the course of his career, Deadline reported.

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Frankie Banali

Frankie Banali, drummer for the band Quiet Riot, died on Aug. 20 in Los Angeles after battling stage four pancreatic cancer since April 2019, his wife Regina said in a statement. He was 69.

“He put up an inspiringly brave and courageous 16-month battle to the end and continued playing live as long as he could,” she wrote, adding that at the time of his diagnosis, doctors only gave him six months to live.

“He lived for playing live and performed for millions of fans around the world throughout his career,” she wrote. “His wish for everyone is that you be your own health advocate for early detection so you may live long and rescue many animals.”

The drummer was the only remaining member from the Quiet Riot’s original 1982 lineup. The band reunited in 2010, three years after the death of vocalist Kevin DuBrow in 2007 of a cocaine overdose. Banali also served as the band’s manager and played drums in the heavy metal band W.A.S.P.

Banali is survived by his wife Regina and his daughter Ashley. 

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Chi Chi DeVayne

The RuPaul’s Drag Race star has died. She was 34.

DeVayne’s death, which was confirmed by Entertainment Weekly, comes after she was recently hospitalized. Her cause of death is not immediately clear at this time.

In early August, DeVayne asked her fans on Instagram to “keep me in your prayers” following her hospitalization, EW reported. In July, the star was hospitalized with high blood pressure and suspected kidney failure, but she was later discharged, according to the outlet.

A week ago, fans began to flood the comments section of DeVayne’s Instagram, saying the star was “battling pneumonia right now.”

Since news of her death broke, RuPaul and DeVayne’s fellow Drag Race alums have paid tribute to her on social media.

“I am heartbroken to learn of the passing of Chi Chi DeVayne. I am so grateful that we got to experience her kind and beautiful soul. She will be dearly missed, but never forgotten. May her generous and loving spirit shine down on us all,” RuPaul said in a tweet posted to the RuPaul’s Drag Race Twitter account. “On behalf of VH1, World of Wonder and the cast and crew of RuPaul’s Drag Race, I extend my deepest sympathy – from our family to hers.”

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Todd Nance

Nance, Widespread Panic’s founding drummer, has died. He was 57.

The drummer died the morning of Aug. 19 in Athens, Georgia, “from sudden and unexpectedly severe complications of a chronic illness,” his family said in a statement on the band’s website.

The family said that a memorial service is not being planned at this time, but that more information will be provided at a later time “as decisions are made regarding the best way to honor Todd’s extraordinary life and career.”

“The Nance family appreciates the love and support of all and requests that their privacy be honored during this hard time,” the statement concluded.

“With heavy hearts and loving memories we say goodbye to our brother Todd Alton Nance,” said a statement attributed to the “Widespread Panic Family.”

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Ben Cross

The actor, known for his role as Olympic athlete Harold Abrahams in the 1981 film Chariots of Fire, has died, PEOPLE has confirmed. He was 72.

Cross died the morning of Aug. 18 in Vienna, Austria, according to multiple reportsThe actor had a long career working in theater and film, studying acting at London’s prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) and going on to make his film debut in the 1976 World War II film A Bridge Too Far.

In 1978, Cross starred in the musical Chicago, playing Billy Flynn. The part led to his casting in Chariots of Fire which won the Oscar for Best Picture.

Cross is survived by his two children, Theo and Lauren, from his first marriage.

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Linda Manz

Linda Manz, known for her performances in films like Days of Heaven and Out of the Blue died on Aug. 14 after a battle with lung cancer and pneumonia. She was 58.

Manz’s first movie role came when she was 15 in the 1978 drama Days of Heaven, directed by Terrence Malick and also starring Richard Gere, Brooke Adams and Sam Shepard. She went on to appear in films like The Wanderers (1979), Out of the Blue (1980), Gummo (1997) and had a final supporting role in David Fincher’s The Game.

“She leaves behind a husband, two sons and three grandchildren who all love and miss her tremendously,” her family said on a GoFundMe page established by her son Michael Guthrie. “Linda was a loving wife, a caring mom, a wonderful grandma and a great friend who was loved by many.”

The page is raising money to cover her final expenses.

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Ash Christian

Emmy and Tony Award-winning producer, actor and founder of Cranium Entertainment, died on Aug. 13. He was 35.

The late producer ran his own New York-based production company where he produced numerous films including 1985, Hurricane Bianca, Little Sister and Coin Heist. His credits as an actor included roles on Cleaners, The Good Wife, The Good Fight, Law & Order and Person of Interest.

Christian was listed as a producer on numerous projects currently in production including As Sick As They Made Us, Mayim Bialik’s directorial debut starring Dustin Hoffman, and The Sixth Reel, starring Charles Busch and Doug Plaut, per his IMDB page.

Christian died in his sleep on Thursday while vacationing in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, according to The Hollywood Reporter and Deadline.

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Reni Santoni

Reni Santoni, the actor best known for his roles in Dirty Harry and Seinfeld‘s Poppie the pizza chef, died on Aug. 1 from natural causes. He was 81. 

Santoni had spent several months in hospice care in Los Angeles, his friend Tracy Newman, a musician and TV writer and producer, told PEOPLE. 

Santoni had over 100 movie credits listed on IMDb at the time of his death, including roles in Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry (1971), Eddie Murphy’s Doctor Dolittle (1998) and Sylvester Stallone’s Cobra (1986).

Santoni is survived by his son, Nick, according to The Wrap.

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Olivia de Havilland

The Gone with the Wind star died in her sleep at home in Paris on July 25. She was 104.

Less than a month before her death, de Havilland, who had been the oldest surviving star of the controversial 1939 film, which also starred Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable, celebrated her birthday on July 1.

The Hollywood legend was a two-time winner of the Academy Award for Best Actress: 1946’s To Each His Own and 1950’s The Heiress.

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Regis Philbin

The beloved TV host died on July 24. “We are deeply saddened to share that our beloved Regis Philbin passed away last night of natural causes, one month shy of his 89th birthday,” his family shared with PEOPLE in an exclusive statement.

“His family and friends are forever grateful for the time we got to spend with him – for his warmth, his legendary sense of humor, and his singular ability to make every day into something worth talking about. We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss,” the Philbin family said.

The star began his run as host of Live! with co-hosts Kathie Lee Gifford and Kelly Ripa, and also served as the original host of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.

Philbin, who was married twice, is survived by daughters J.J. Philbin and Joanna Philbin, whom he shared with his wife of 50 years, Joy Philbin. He was also father to daughter Amy Philbin, whom he shared with his first wife Catherine Faylen. Philbin and Faylen had another child, son Daniel Philbin, who died in 2014.

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Peter Green

Tthe singer-songwriter, guitarist, and founding member of Fleetwood Mac died at the age of 73. Green’s family announced through lawyers that the musician died “peacefully in his sleep.”

Stevie Nicks paid tribute to Green after news of his death. “I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Peter Green. My biggest regret is that I never got to share the stage with him. I always hoped in my heart of hearts that that would happen,” Nicks said in a statement, obtained by PEOPLE.

“When I first listened to all the Fleetwood Mac records, I was very taken with his guitar playing. It was one of the reasons I was excited to join the band. His legacy will live on forever in the history books of Rock n Roll. It was in the beginning, Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac and I thank you, Peter Green, for that. You changed our lives,” she said.

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Rep. John Lewis

The longtime Congressman and renowned civil rights activist died on July 17. He was 80 years old.

The politician was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer in December 2019.

“The world has lost a legend; the civil rights movement has lost an icon, the City of Atlanta has lost one of its most fearless leaders, and the Congressional Black Caucus has lost our longest serving member. The Congressional Black Caucus is known as the Conscience of the Congress. John Lewis was known as the conscience of our caucus,” the Congressional Black Caucus said in a statement. “A fighter for justice until the end, Mr. Lewis recently visited Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington D.C. His mere presence encouraged a new generation of activists to ‘speak up and speak out’ and get into ‘good trouble’ to continue bending the arc toward justice and freedom.”

Lewis dedicated his life to protecting human rights and was at the forefront of the civil rights movement, named one of the movement’s Big Six leaders by age 23. 

Since being elected to Congress in 1986, Lewis advocated for healthcare reform, improvements in education and the fight against poverty. He also oversaw multiple renewals of the Voting Rights Act.

Former President Barack Obama awarded Lewis with the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his life’s work in 2011.

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Rev. C.T. Vivian

The civil rights leader and field general for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. died on July 17 at the age of 95.

Two of Vivian’s daughters, Kira Vivian and Denise Morse, confirmed their father’s death to The New York Times, sharing that he had been in hospice care. News of his death broke just hours before that of his fellow Freedom Rider, Rep. John Lewis. 

Born in Missouri and raised in Illinois, Vivian took part in his first civil rights protest in 1947, and went on to lead sit-ins, boycotts and marches in segregated cities across the country.

From 1963 through 1966, Vivian served as the national director of 85 local chapters of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, a civil rights organization first led by Dr. King.

Vivian was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2013.

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Ekaterina Alexandrovskaya

The Olympic figure skater died at the age of 20, the International Skating Union confirmed on July 17.

The Russian athlete died in Moscow, though additional details of her death were not immediately known, the Associated Press reported.

Born in Russia, Alexandrovskaya gained her Australian citizenship in 2016, and competed for the country alongside skating partner Harley Windsor at the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics and placed 18th. The pair won the world junior title the year before. In February, she retired from the sport due to injuries. 

“The ISU is shocked by the news of Ekaterina’s passing,” President Jan Dijkema said in a statement on ISU’s website. “She was a talented pair skater and the Figure Skating community will miss her. We offer our deepest sympathies to her family, friends and teammates and mourn this tragic loss.”

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Naya Rivera

The Glee star was reported missing on July 8 after an outing to Lake Piru in Ventura County, California. Rivera and her 4-year-old son, Josey Dorsey, rented a pontoon boat, and when the boat was overdue to be returned, staff found it with Josey wearing a life jacket, sleeping alone on board. 
 
Five days after her disappearance,  Naya Rivera was confirmed dead. She was 33.
 
“We are confident the body we found is that of Naya Rivera,” Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub said in a news conference on July 13. “It has been an extremely difficult time for her family throughout this ordeal … our hearts are with them and we share in their grief for Naya’s loss.”
 
“[Josey] and Naya swam in the lake together,” Ayub said. “It was during that time that her son described being helped onto the boat by Naya. … He told investigators he looked back and saw her disappear under the surface of the water.”
 
Later, he added, “We believe that she mustered enough energy to get her son back on the boat, but not enough to save herself.”
 
The California native started her Hollywood career at age 4, finding her first recurring role on the CBS sitcom The Royal Family. Rivera also made appearances on shows like The Fresh Prince of Bel-AirFamily Matters and The Bernie Mac Show. She played Santana Lopez on Glee and appeared in nearly every episode of the musical comedy’s six seasons. Most recently, the actress starred in the series Step Up: High Water.

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Grant Imahara

Grant Imahara, a former cohost of Discovery’s MythBusters and host of White Rabbit Project on Netflix, “died suddenly,” The Hollywood Reporter reported. The cause of death was determined to be a brain aneurysm. 

Imahara was previously an engineer at the THX division of Lucasfilm, before moving on to Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light and Magic (ILM), where he worked on films such as The Lost World: Jurassic Park, all three Star Wars prequels, both sequels to The Matrix and more.

Imahara joined MythBusters on season 3, leaving the show in 2014 with co-hosts Kari Byron and Tory Belleci. The trio later teamed up to host Netflix’s 2016 show, White Rabbit Project.

“We are heartbroken to hear this sad news about Grant. He was an important part of our Discovery family and a really wonderful man. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family,” a representative for Discovery said in a statement to the outlet on Monday.

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Kelly Preston

“On the morning of July 12, 2020, Kelly Preston, adored wife and mother, passed away following a two-year battle with breast cancer,” a family representative told PEOPLE exclusively. Preston was 57. 

Preston is survived by her husband John Travolta and their children: daughter Ella, 20, and 9-year-old son Benjamin. Son Jett died at age 16 in January 2009.

A representative for the family told PEOPLE, “Choosing to keep her fight private, [Preston] had been undergoing medical treatment for some time, supported by her closest family and friends. She was a bright, beautiful and loving soul who cared deeply about others and who brought life to everything she touched. Her family asks for your understanding of their need for privacy at this time.”

The actress starred in films such as Mischief (1985), SpaceCamp (1986), Twins (1988), Jerry Maguire (1996) and For Love of the Game (1999). 

Preston’s final film role was in the 2018 film Gotti in which she played Victoria Gotti, the wife of Mafia boss John Gotti, who was portrayed by her real-life husband, John Travolta. The pair celebrated their 28th wedding anniversary in September 2019. 

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Zindzi Mandela

The South African ambassador to Denmark and youngest daughter of former President Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela died on July 13. She was 59.

CNN reported that Zindzi died at a Johannesburg hospital. Two days later, her son Zondwa Mandela told the South African Broadcasting Corporation that his mother had tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) the day of her death, and that the family is awaiting the results of “a complete and full autopsy.”

Zindzi was a  “fearless political activist who was a leader in her own right,” South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said in a statement, which was obtained by CNN.

Zindzi also studied law at the University of Cape Town, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in 1985. Since 2015, she had served as South Africa’s ambassador to Denmark.

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Galyn Görg

The RoboCop2 actress died on July 14, one day before her 56th birthday.

Sheila Legette, a rep for the actress, confirmed to USA Today that Görg died while being treated for cancer in Hawaii, adding that she had “quietly and privately fought a good fight” during her health struggle.

“Galyn was a beautiful soul who loved life, art, dance and was a phenomenal woman who I called not only a client but a good friend,” Legette told outlet. “She will be missed beyond measure.”

According to a GoFundMe page set up by her loved ones, Görg was diagnosed with “cancer throughout her entire body and lungs.”

In addition to her role in 1990’s RoboCop2, the actress was best known for guest starring on a number of popular TV shows, including Lost, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Twin Peaks and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

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Nicole Thea

24-year-old YouTube star Nicole Thea, who was pregnant with her first child, died on July 11, 2020. 

Thea’s family confirmed the heartbreaking news on Sunday in an Instagram post, and also shared that Thea’s unborn son, whom she and her boyfriend Global Boga hoped to name Reign, also died.

“To all Nicole’s friends and supporters it is with great sadness that I have to inform you that Nicole and her son she and Boga named Reign sadly passed away on Saturday morning,” the family’s post read.

Thea’s family went on to explain that the YouTube star had “pre-scheduled a few YouTube videos and Boga has made the decision to allow them to be aired.”

“As a family we ask that you give us privacy because our hearts are truly broken and we are struggling to cope with what has happened,” they said.

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Lil Marlo

Rapper Lil Marlo was fatally shot on July 11 in Atlanta, according to multiple reports.

The Atlanta Police Department said in a statement that around 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, they responded to a call about a single vehicle accident on Interstate 285 in downtown Atlanta, and upon arriving they found a “30-year-old driver deceased inside the vehicle,” Complex reported.

On Sunday morning, the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed to both NBC News and TMZ that a man named Rudolph Johnson, which is the rapper’s real name, had been brought in within the past 24 hours. 

Lil Marlo was a member of Quality Control Music since 2017. With the label, he released several projects, including “1st n 3rd,” “The Real 1” and “9th Ward God.” He also made several appearances on “Quality Control: Control The Streets Vol. 1 and 2.”

Lil Marlo is survived by his children, whom he paid tribute to on Father’s Day last month with a series of photos and videos on Instagram.

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Nick Cordero

The Broadway star has died after a months-long battle with the coronavirus. He was 41.

Cordero, whose Broadway credits include Waitress and Rock of Ages, died on the morning of July 5 at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where he had been hospitalized for over 90 days.

He is survived by his wife Amanda Kloots, whom he wed in September 2017, and their 1-year-old son Elvis Eduardo.

“God has another angel in heaven now. My darling husband passed away this morning. He was surrounded in love by his family, singing and praying as he gently left this earth. I am in disbelief and hurting everywhere. My heart is broken as I cannot imagine our lives without him. Nick was such a bright light. He was everyone’s friend, loved to listen, help and especially talk. He was an incredible actor and musician. He loved his family and loved being a father and husband. Elvis and I will miss him in everything we do, everyday,” she wrote on Instagram.

“To Nicks extraordinary doctor, Dr. David Ng, you were my positive doctor! There are not many doctors like you. Kind, smart, compassionate, assertive and always eager to listen to my crazy ideas or call yet another doctor for me for a second opinion. You’re a diamond in the rough,” Kloots continued.

“I cannot begin to thank everyone enough for the outpour of love , support and help we’ve received these last 95 days. You have no idea how much you lifted my spirits at 3pm everyday as the world sang Nicks song, Live Your Life. We sang it to him today, holding his hands. As I sang the last line to him, ‘they’ll give you hell but don’t you light them kill your light not without a fight. Live your life,’ I smiled because he definitely put up a fight. I will love you forever and always my sweet man,” she concluded.

In support of Cordero’s family, a GoFundMe page was created to raise funds for his medical bills.

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Carl Reiner

The legendary stand-up comedian, actor, director, producer, writer and singer who has graced the silver screen for decades, has died, TMZ was first to report. Reiner’s assistant Judy Nagy also confirmed to Variety.

The outlet said Reiner died on the night of June 29 at his home in Beverly Hills from natural causes. He was 98.

Best known for creating and starring in The Dick Van Dyke Show, Reiner got his start acting in Broadway musicals including Inside U.S.A. and landed the lead role in Call Me Mister. His big break came in 1950 when he was cast in Your Show of Shows appearing in comedy skits, working alongside writers Mel Brooks and Neil Simon.

In addition to his professional success, Reiner has also had a fulfilling personal life as well. He married singer Estelle Lebost in 1943. They were married for 64 years, until her death. The couple had three children: [director] Rob, Lucas, and Annie.

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Jas Waters

The This Is Us writer died on June 9, according to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner’s office. She was 39.

Her cause of death was listed as hanging and the manner of death was ruled as a suicide.

Writers of the NBC show confirmed her death in a statement. 

“The entire #ThisIsUs family was devastated to learn of Jas Waters passing. In our time together, Jas left her mark on us and ALL over the show. She was a brilliant storyteller and a force of nature,” a tweet from their joint account. “We send our deepest sympathies to her loved ones. She was one of us. RIP @JasFly.”

In addition to This Is Us and Kidding, Waters also worked on Hood Adjacent With James Davis and The Breaks. 

Earlier on in her career, Waters ran her own entertainment website and served as a columnist for Vibe magazine. She was also featured in the first and only season of VH1’s reality series The Gossip Game, which focused on bloggers and other media figures covering the music industry.

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Bonnie Pointer

The founding member of the ’70s and ’80s R&B group The Pointer Sisters died on June 8. She was 69.

“Bonnie was my best friend and we talked every day,” her sister and former bandmate, Anita, said in a statement to PEOPLE. “We never had a fight in our life. I already miss her, and I will see her again one day.”

More than 50 years ago, Bonnie and her sisters began singing in their father’s church in Oakland, California, and in 1973 they released their self-titled debut album, which featured their first hit, “Yes We Can Can.” 

Bonnie recorded five albums with her sisters and co-wrote the Pointer Sisters country hit “Fairytale” with Anita. They performed the song live at the Grand Ole Opry in 1974, making history as the first African American vocal group to ever perform at the famed venue. The following year, they took home their first Grammy for best country duo or group for the track. Bonnie later went on the pursue a solo career in Motown.

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Chiranjeevi Sarja

The Indian movie star died of a heart attack at age 39, according to B.S. Yediyurappa, the chief minister of Karnataka, India.

Yediyurappa confirmed the news on Twitter on June 7.

“It is a shock to hear the news that Kannada famous artist Chiranjeevi Sarja died of a heart attack,” he wrote, roughly translated to English. “Prematurely dying at the age of just 39 is shocking. I pray that God may grant them goodwill, their family, and the strength to endure grief for their vast fan base.”

Sarja was known for his decade-long career in film, including roles in movies like 2013’s Whistle and 2018’s Amma I Love You. He had three films released this year.

According to the Hindustan Times, Sarja is survived by his wife, actress Meghna Raj, whom he wed in 2018. He is from a family of entertainers: his uncle is famous actor Arjun and his grandfather is actor Shakti Prasad.

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Donald ‘Reche’ Caldwell

The former NFL wide receiver died at age 41 on June 6 after being shot and killed in an “ambush” outside his home in Tampa, Florida, his mother Deborah told News Channel 8.

Deborah told the outlet that her son was shot in the leg and chest just as he was heading out on a date with his girlfriend. He was later found by Tampa Police Department dead in his front yard.

She added that Reche’s last words were, “Tell everybody I love them.”

Tampa Police Department told NBC News that they are investigating the homicide and said it did “not appear to be a random act.”

The New England Patriots, the team which Reche played for in 2006, paid tribute to the late athlete on Twitter. “We are deeply saddened to learn of the death of former Patriot Reche Caldwell. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends,” the team wrote.

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Kurt Thomas

Thomas, the first American male gymnast to win a gold medal at the world championship, died on June 5. He was 64.

Thomas’ family first shared the sad news of his passing with the International Gymnastic Magazine. Prior to his death, Thomas suffered a tear of the basilar artery in the brain stem, which caused him to have a severe stroke on May 24.

“Yesterday I lost my universe, my best friend and my soul mate of twenty-four years.  Kurt lived his life to the extreme, and I will be forever honored to be his wife,” wife Beckie Thomas told the outlet.

At the 1978 world championships in Strasbourg, France, Kurt’s signature skill, a dismount called the “Thomas Salto,” earned him the first world championship gold medal for the U.S. men’s gymnastics program. 

After retiring from the sport in 1980, he worked as a TV analyst for ABC Sports during the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. In 2003, Kurt was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.

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Chris Trousdale

Trousdale, an actor and former member of the boy band Dream Street, died on June 2 of complications from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). He was 34.

News of his death was confirmed by a statement shared to his Instagram, which read, “It is with a heavy heart that we confirm the passing of Chris Trousdale on June, 2, 2020 from an undisclosed illness. He was a light to so many and will be missed dearly by his family, friends and fans all over the world.”

Former Dream Street bandmate Jesse McCartney paid tribute to his friend, noting in his caption that Trousdale “passed away due to complications from COVID-19.” He added, “Chris had an explosively charming personality with boundless amounts of talent.”

In addition to his music career, Trousdale appeared on TV shows including Days of Our Lives, Shake It Up, Austin & Ally and Lucifer.

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Mary Pat Gleason

The Mom actress died of cancer on June 2. She was 70.

Gleason’s manager confirmed the news to Variety.

Writer and director Ron Fassler also shared the news on Facebook, posting a sweet tribute to his late friend.

“Mary Pat Gleason, one of the dearest and sweetest people I have ever had the pleasure to know, passed away last night at the age of seventy. She has 174 credits on her IMDB page (with one unreleased film still to come), but she was so much more than a wonderful actress,” Fassler wrote.

Gleason’s many TV credits include, Will & Grace, Life in Pieces, Desperate Housewives, WTF 101, How to Get Away with Murder, Shameless, Instant Mom, Scandal, Sex and the City and more.

In 1986, Gleason won a Daytime Emmy Award for outstanding drama series writing team for her work on The Guiding Light.

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Gregory Tyree Boyce

The Twilight actor, 30, and girlfriend Natalie Adepoju, 27, were found dead in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 13, Clark County Medical Examiner spokesperson confirmed to PEOPLE.

Boyce, who was best known for his role as Tyler Crowley in the first Twilight movie, and his girlfriend’s cause of death is still pending, the spokesperson added.

The actor leaves behind a 10-year-old daughter Alaya while Adepoju, who is originally from Los Angeles, California, is survived by her young son Egypt. 

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The legendary music executive and founder of Uptown Records died on May 7 of heart failure in his West Hollywood home, multiple outlets reported. He was 59.

Before he rose to the top of the business side of the music industry, Harrell began his music career as an artist with rap duo Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. 

Harrell worked his way up at Def Jam Records starting in 1983, and three years later, left to found Uptown Records in New York City. There, he discovered Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs, also known as P. Diddy. 

A three-part scripted miniseries chronicling the story of Harrell and Uptown Records, titled Uptown, was announced by BET last December and is still scheduled to premiere sometime this year.

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Fred Willard

The comedic star died on May 15 of natural causes, a rep for the actor confirmed to PEOPLE. He was 86. 

“My father passed away very peacefully last night at the fantastic age of 86 years old. He kept moving, working and making us happy until the very end,” his daughter Hope Mulbarger told PEOPLE in a statement. “We loved him so very much!”

Born in Ohio, the four-time Emmy nominee — whose numerous credits include Best in Show, This Is Spinal Tap, Everybody Loves Raymond and Modern Family — began his career in sketch comedy, and transitioned to films and TV in the 1970’s. 

The actor was also passionate about his work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters, City of Hope, and Actors and Others for Animals.

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Lynn Shelton

The director, best known for her work on indie films including Your Sister’s Sister and TV series GLOW and Little Fires Everywhere, died in Los Angeles on May 15. She was 54.

Shelton died of a previously unidentified blood disorder, her publicist Adam Kersh confirmed, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

vShelton’s romantic and creative partner for the past year, comedian Marc Maron, shared a statement with IndieWire. “I have some awful news. Lynn passed away last night,” he began. “She collapsed yesterday morning after having been ill for a week…It was not COVID-19. The doctors could not save her. They tried. Hard.”

“She was a beautiful, kind, loving, charismatic artist. Her spirit was pure joy. She made me happy. I made her happy. We were happy. I made her laugh all the time. We laughed a lot. We were starting a life together. I really can’t believe what is happening,” he added. “This is a horrendous, sad loss.”

Since her 2006 directorial debut (with indie film We Go Way Back), the Seattle native has written and directed eight feature films, and lent her talents to a number of hit TV shows like The Morning Show, Mad Men, Fresh Off the Boat and New Girl.

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Phyllis George

The former Miss America, who went on to become the first female co-anchor on The NFL Today, has died at 70.

The cause of death was polycythemia vera, a rare blood cancer that George was diagnosed with 35 years ago, her family told the New York Times and CNN.

The Texas native was catapulted to stardom when she became the 50th Miss America in 1971. “It was the springboard to everything I’ve done in my life,” she said of winning the title in a 2007 Texas Monthly interview.

She went on to become a trailblazing sportscaster, joining The NFL Today as the program’s first female co-anchor in 1975.

George’s daughter, Pamela Brown, who is CNN’s senior White House correspondent, told the outlet that her mother “paved the way for other women to become sportscasters.”

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Melissa Etheridge and ex-partner Julie Cypher’s 21-year-old son died of an opioid overdose on Wednesday.

Speaking to PEOPLE, the star, 58, said Beckett had struggled with addiction for some time.

“Today I joined the hundreds of thousands of families who have lost loved ones to opioid addiction,” Etheridge told PEOPLE in a statement. “My son Beckett, who was just 21, struggled to overcome his addiction and finally succumbed to it today. He will be missed by those who loved him, his family and friends.”

“My heart is broken,” the musician continued. “I am grateful for those who have reached out with condolences and I feel their love and sincere grief.”

“We struggle with what else we could have done to save him, and in the end we know he is out of the pain now,” she says. “I will sing again, soon. It has always healed me.”

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Corey La Barrie

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https://www.instagram.com/p/B9S15ulHUku/Corey La Barrie/Instagram

The YouTube star died on his 25th birthday following a car crash in Los Angeles on May 10.

The fatal incident occurred around 9:30 p.m. in the Valley Village area of L.A., when Ink Master‘s Daniel Silva was driving a 2020 McLaren 600LT “at a high rate of speed” and “lost control,” running off the road and colliding with a stop sign and tree, authorities allege. La Barrie was reportedly in the passenger seat.

Silva and La Barrie were both transported to a local hospital, where La Barrie was pronounced dead. The following day, Silva was arrested.

Prior to his death, La Barrie had over 330,000 subscribers on YouTube and over 200,000 followers on Instagram.

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Mary Pratt

The trailblazing female died on May 6, at age 101. 

The baseball player is believed to have been the last surviving member of the 1943 Rockford Peaches, the team that was part of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, which inspired the sports movie A League of Their Own in 1992.

“We are terribly sad to report that former Rockford Peaches and Kenosha Comets pitcher, Mary Pratt passed away on May 6th. She was 101 years old,” tweeted the league. “Mary was the last known original Peaches player that played on the 1943 team. Her stories, her energy will be missed for a long time.”

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Pavle Jovanovic

The former U.S. Olympic bobsledder died by suicide on May 3. He was 43.

The USA Bobsled and Skeleton released a statement on May 9 confirming his death.

“The winter sports community has suffered a tragic loss,” USA Bobsled/Skeleton CEO and former teammate of Jovanovic, Aron McGuire said in a statement. “Pavle’s passion and commitment towards bobsled was seen and felt by his teammates, coaches, competitors, and fans of the sport.”

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Jerry Stiller

The comedy legend died at 92, his son actor Ben Stiller confirmed on May 11. 

“I’m sad to say that my father, Jerry Stiller, passed away from natural causes,” Ben said in a tweet. “He was a great dad and grandfather, and the most dedicated husband to Anne for about 62 years.”

He concluded, “He will be greatly missed. Love you Dad.”

The actor was best known for his role as George Costanza’s dad on Seinfeld, which earned him an Emmy nomination for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series.

Jerry also appeared opposite his son in Zoolander, as well as Ben’s films HeavyweightsThe Heartbreak Kid and Hot Pursuit.

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Betty Wright

The Grammy Award-winning R&B singer, whose hits include “No Pain, (No Gain)” and “Tonight Is the Night,” died on May 10. She was 66.

Her niece announced her passing on Twitter. “I just lost my aunt this morning…. and now my mood has changed…. sleep in peace aunty Betty Wright,” she wrote on Twitter. “Fly high angel.”

Reflecting on the kindness Wright showed her over the years, her niece also expressed regret at not being able to pay her one last visit. “My auntie was a legend…. she helped me get my first paychecks singing background….. and I didn’t make it to see you this past week and that’s going to haunt me …. R.I.P. Betty Wright,” she wrote.

The Miami native, born Bessie Regina Norris, landed her first record deal at just twelve years old, and went on to release more than 10 top 20 hit songs.

The six-time Grammy nominee won her first and only award in 1976 for her song “Where Is the Love.”

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The rock and roll legend died on May 9 following a battle with bone cancer. He was 87.

The “Good Golly Miss Molly” singer’s agent of 40 years, Dick Alen, confirmed the musician’s death to PEOPLE.

“Little Richard passed away this morning from bone cancer in Nashville. He was living with his brother in Nashville,” Alen said. “He was battling for a good while, many years. I last spoke to him about two or three weeks ago. I knew he wasn’t well but he never really got into it, he just would say ‘I’m not well.’ He’s been suffering for many years with various aches and pains. He just wouldn’t talk about it much.”

Born Richard Wayne Penniman, the musician rose to fame in the 1950s thanks to his energized performances behind the piano and embrace of androgyny, setting the stage for many performers who came after him. 

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Cady Groves

The singer-songwriter known for hits like “This Little Girl,” “Love Actually,” “Forget You,” “Dreams” and “Oil and Water” died on May 2 at age 30. 

Cady’s older brother, Cody Groves, first announced the sad news in an emotional post on Twitter over the weekend, saying that Cady “has left this world.”

“Details are limited right now but family is trying to get them and will keep people updated,” he said. “Rest In Peace little sis.”

In a follow-up tweet, Cody said his sister’s death was the result of “natural causes” pending a final coroner’s report. Foul play and self-harm have both been ruled out by the coroner, Cady’s rep told PEOPLE.

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Sam Lloyd

The actor, best known for his role as lawyer Ted Buckland on Scrubs, passed away at the age of 56 on April 30, his agent confirmed to PEOPLE.

Lloyd was diagnosed with a brain tumor in January of last year, shortly after welcoming his son Weston with wife Vanessa, according to a GoFundMe campaign set up by Scrubs producer Tom Hobert. Following the diagnosis, doctors found that the cancer in his brain had metastasized from his lungs and spread to his liver, spine and jaw, the page said.

In addition to his role as Ted Buckland in 95 episodes of Scrubs, the gifted character actor also appeared in such shows as Desperate Housewives, Shameless, Modern Family, The Middle, Spin City and Seinfeld. In film, he had roles in The Brothers Solomon, Galaxy Quest and Flubber.

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Matty Simmons

The co-founder of National Lampoon magazine and producer of Animal House died on April 29. He was 93.

The movie producer’s daughter, Kate Simmons, announced the sad news on Instagram the following day.

“Yesterday I lost my hero. My dad had gone from the sharpest, healthiest 93 year old most people have encountered to abruptly having every imaginable issue except corona,” Kate wrote in the caption. “What he did in a lifetime was legendary.”

She continued, “He wrote like nine books and could finish a novel faster than I’ll probably finish this post. When we lost my mom a couple years ago it felt like a part of us both died. He told me early on, we’re a team now and we have to stick together. We did just that and became inseparably close. He became my best friend in the world.”

A Brooklyn, New York native, Simmons was the Executive Vice President of the Diner’s Club, the first credit card company created, and went on to found Twenty-First Century Communications in 1967, a publishing company that published Weight Watchers and National Lampoon magazines.

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Ashley Ross

The Little Women: Atlanta star died on April 27 from injuries sustained in a car accident. She was 34. 

Her management announced the news on the late reality star’s Instagram account and confirmed her death to PEOPLE, saying, “It is with profound sadness that we confirm on behalf of the family of Ashley Ross aka ‘Ms Minnie’ of Little Women: Atlanta has succumbed to injuries from a tragic hit and run car accident today at the age of 34. The family respectfully asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time.”

A show rep for Little Women remembered Ross as “the most beautiful, kind, giving, generous human ever” in a statement to PEOPLE.

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Marty & Nancy Smith

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The motocross legend, 63, and his wife died in a dune buggy accident in Southern California on April 27, according to their close friend Lee Ramage.

“It’s with the heaviest, grieving heart that I have to tell you Marty and Nancy Smith were killed yesterday in a rollover accident in his dune buggy at the imperial sand dunes,” Ramage wrote on Facebook the following day, sharing a photo from just hours before the tragic accident.

“My wife, Tammi and I were in the buggy and were unhurt,” Ramage said, explaining that the couple tried everything they could to save their friends’ lives while waiting for help to arrive.

Marty is known as a legendary motocross racer and was inducted into the American Motocross Association Hall of Fame in 2000. The San Diego native was the AMA’s first-ever champion and dominated the sport in the 1970s, before retiring in the early 1980s.

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Irrfan Khan

The famed Bollywood star and actor — who had over 150 credits to his name, including notable roles in Slumdog MillionaireJurassic World, Life of Pi, and The Amazing Spider-Man — has died. He was 53 years old.

In late April, Khan had been admitted to hospital in Mumbai with a colon infection, CNN reported. Khan had been experiencing health issues in recent years and was diagnosed with a neuroendocrine tumor in 2018, a rare condition affecting cells that release hormones into the bloodstream. His representatives confirmed his death to media outlets on April 29.

He is survived by his wife, Sutapa Sikdar, and two grown sons, Babil and Ayan.

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Peter Beard

Following a years-long battle with dimensia, the famed fashion and wildlife photographer was found dead at age 82 after he went missing from his Montauk, New York, home on April 1.

On April 19, nearly three weeks after his disappearance, his family confirmed Beard’s death in a statement shared on social media, which thanked everyone for their support as well as the local police for their search efforts.

The statement also reflected on Beard’s lasting legacy.

“Peter was an extraordinary man who led an exceptional life. He lived life to the fullest; he squeezed every drop out of every day. He was relentless in his passion for nature, unvarnished and unsentimental but utterly authentic always. He was an intrepid explorer, unfailingly generous, charismatic, and discerning,” it read.

Beard dedicated more than half his life to documenting life in Africa after becoming enamored with the continent and its natural landscapes during a visit at age 17. 

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Brian Dennehy

The two-time Tony Award winner died of natural causes on April 15. He was 81.

“It is with heavy hearts we announce that our father, Brian passed away last night from natural causes, not Covid-related,” the actor’s daughter, Elizabeth Dennehy, announced on Twitter. “Larger than life, generous to a fault, a proud and devoted father and grandfather, he will be missed by his wife Jennifer, family and many friends.”

The Connecticut-born actor began his career — which spanned the small and big screens, as well as Broadway — doing comedic films, although he later became known primarily for his dramatic roles.

His breakthrough role was the overzealous sheriff, Will Teasle, in 1982’s First Blood alongside Sylvester Stallone as Rambo. In addition to a number of other films, he memorably starred alongside Chris Farley in 1995’s Tommy Boy. 

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Jo Ferguson

The longtime celebrity stylist and Australian fashion editor died at 46, The Daily Telegraph reported on April 9.  

According to the outlet, her death came after “a long battle with ill health,” which ultimately ended in kidney and liver failure.

“Sadly my inspirational sister Jo passed away defiantly last night, just after midnight,” Jo’s brother, Scott Ferguson, said, according to the outlet.

Jo was well-known throughout the fashion industry, having been a fashion editor at Cleo magazine, according to multiple outlets including the Telegraph.

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Chynna

The rapper and model died at her Philadelphia home on April 8, her manager John Miller confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 25. 

At this time, her cause of death is unknown, he said.

“Chynna was deeply loved and will be sorely missed,” the young rapper’s family said in a statement provided to PEOPLE.

The rising star’s death comes just four months after she released her third EP, If I Die First

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Vic Henley

The comedian died of a pulmonary embolism on April 6, his niece confirmed on Facebook. He was 57.

“We already miss him so much and feel the heavy weight of this loss. He was our best friend,” the relative wrote. “We love you more than you could ever know, Uncle Vic.”

Comedians across the industry mourned Henley’s loss on social media.

“RIP VIC HENLEY. Such a funny man. Loved him. Thoughts and prayers to his family,” wrote Adam Sandler on Twitter, while Jim Gaffigan wrote that he was “so sad” to hear of Henley’s death, and that he was “always a light in a dark world.”

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John Prine

The celebrated country-folk singer and songwriter behind classics such as “Angel from Montgomery” died on April 7  from coronavirus complications. He was 73.

After being hospitalized for COVID-19 on March 26 and intubated two days later, the musician died at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, a representative confirmed on behalf of Prine’s family to PEOPLE.

His wife of 23 years, Fiona Whelan Prine, was also diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier in March and had been keeping fans updated about Prine’s condition while he was in the hospital.

A two-time cancer survivor, Prine released his last album, The Tree of Forgiveness, in 2018. He is survived by Fiona and their three children.

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Al Kaline

The Detroit Tigers baseball legend died at his home in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, on April 6, according to the Detroit Free Press. He was 85.

His cause of death was not released, though a family friend told Detroit News that Kaline had recently suffered a stroke.

“It’s with a heavy heart that the Detroit Tigers confirm Al Kaline has passed away at the age of 85. One of the most distinguished and decorated players in the history of baseball, ‘Mr. Tiger’ was one of the greatest to ever wear the Olde English ‘D,'” a statement from the Detroit Tigers, obtained by PEOPLE, read. “The Hall of Famer has been a pillar of our organization for 67 years, beginning with his Major League debut in 1953 and continuing to present in his duties as Special Assistant to the General Manager. Our thoughts are with Mr. Kaline’s wife, Louise, and family now, and forever.”

After 22 years with the team, Kaline retired in 1974 after recording his 3,000th hit. He finished his career with 3,007 hits, 399 home runs, 498 doubles, 75 triples and 1,582 RBIs — all of which were done while playing with the Tigers.

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James Drury

Drury, who famously starred in of one of the longest-running Westerns in the history of television, The Virginian, died of natural causes on April 6, his assistant confirmed on Facebook. He was 85.

“THE COWBOY took his last ride,” Lindsey Karen wrote. “It is with immense sadness that I let you all know that James Drury, our beloved Virginian and dear friend passed away this morning of natural causes, Monday, April 6, 2020. He will be missed so much. It is beyond words. Memorial service to be determined later.”

Along with The Virginian, the actor also starred in the ABC series Firehouse and appeared on series including, Alias Smith and Jones, The Fall Guy and Walker, Texas Ranger.

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Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean & Gideon

After going missing in a canoe accident, the granddaughter of slain Sen. Robert F. Kennedy and her 8-year-old son are presumed dead. 

Maeve’s husband, David McKean, shared the news on Facebook on April 3, one day after his wife and son went missing from the family property in Shady Side, Maryland, where they were quarantining.

“Despite heroic efforts by the Coast Guard and many state and local authorities, the decision has now been made to suspend the active rescue effort,” David wrote in a lengthy and emotional Facebook post, following 26 hours of searching.

“It is clear that Maeve and Gideon have passed away,” he said, adding that the search for their recovery will continue.

David and Maeve shared two more children, Gabriella, 7, and Toby, 2 1/2.

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Giacinto Gorga

Teresa Giudice confirmed news of her father Giacinto Gorga’s death on April 3.

The Real Housewives of New Jersey star, who lost her mom Antonia Gorga in March 2017 following a battle with pneumonia, shared a heartfelt tribute to her dad on Instagram. 

“My father, my protector, my hero, God took you early this morning to be with mommy, I saw you peacefully pass & I know you kept fighting for my daughters and I,” she wrote. “I have so many amazing thoughts of you, every day seeing you in the kitchen at my home, teaching my girls to cook, my partner in crime on shopping trips, your love of the shore & my travel buddy. You always wanted everyone to have a good time, eat great food, have a stiff drink and enjoy life.”

“Thank you for showing us all what true love is. Love you Papa Rest In Peace,” she added.

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Adam Schlesinger

The Fountains of Wayne co-founder died after testing positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). He was 52.

The musician’s lawyer, Josh Grier, confirmed his death to Rolling Stone on April 1. Schlesinger had been hospitalized and placed on a ventilator.

Schlesinger won three Emmys throughout his career: one for writing lyrics for Rachel Bloom‘s hit CW musical series Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and two for his lyrical contributions to the 2011 and 2012 Tony Awards telecasts. He also earned an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song for his title track to the 1996 film That Thing You Do!

Celebrities including Tom Hanks, late-night TV hosts Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Kimmel and more paid tribute to the late musician on social media. 

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Logan Williams

The teen actor known for playing a young Barry Allen on The CW’s The Flash died at the age of 16 on April 2.

His mother Marlyse Williams confirmed his passing to The Tri-City News — a local newspaper serving the areas near Coquitlam, British Columbia in Canada — sharing that her family is “absolutely devastated” by the death.

The grieving mom shared that due to social distancing protocols surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, the family is having a difficult time mourning. “I am not able to hug my parents who lost their only grandchild,” Williams said. “It’s hard.”

Williams’ cause of death has not been released.

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Bill Withers

Withers, a three-time Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter famous for his hits “Lean on Me” and “Ain’t No Sunshine,” died on March 30 in Los Angeles from heart complications, his family told the Associated Press in a statement on April 3.

“We are devastated by the loss of our beloved, devoted husband and father. A solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world at large, with his poetry and music, he spoke honestly to people and connected them to each other,” read the statement. “As private a life as he lived close to intimate family and friends, his music forever belongs to the world. In this difficult time, we pray his music offers comfort and entertainment as fans hold tight to loved ones.”

Musicians across genres mourned the “Lovely Day” singer on social media after learning of his passing. 

Withers, who stepped back from the music industry during the 1980s, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015.

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Peter Gamba

The longest-standing editor of The Real Housewives of New York City died on April 1 due to coronavirus complications. He was 63.

Bravo announced the sad news the following day, dedicating RHONY‘s season 12 premiere to Gamba, who they said, “made the show what it is today.”

Andy Cohen also honored Gamba on Watch Watch Happens Live with Andy Cohen, where he referred to him as “the show’s life blood” and shared that he “cut the very first episode of New York Housewives back in season 1.”

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Sergio Rossi

Rossi, one of Italy’s most famous footwear designers, died in Cesena from complications related to the coronavirus, the brand confirmed on April 3. He was 84.

The acclaimed designer was hospitalized with the virus days earlier, Women’s Wear Daily reported.

Rossi launched his company in 1968, after learning the trade from his father, and it soon grew into one of Italy’s largest luxury shoe brands. 

“Today everyone at Sergio Rossi joins me in remembering our dear Sergio, the inspiring founder of our dream,” Riccardo Sciutto, CEO of the Sergio Rossi Group shared on the brand’s Instagram page Friday.

Before his death, the designer was also involved in the fight against coronavirus, donating €100,000 to the Sacco hospital in Milan.

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Julie Bennett

Bennett, the famous voice behind Cindy Bear in The Yogi Bear Show cartoons, died on March 31 from complications related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, her talent agent and longtime friend, Mark Scroggs, confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 88.

“She was definitely a personality and a throwback to Hollywood glamour,” Scroggs said in a statement.

Appearing in several small roles over the course of her career, Bennett was best known for her vocal talents, which were featured in to popular cartoons such as The Bullwinkle ShowMr. MagooThe Bugs Bunny Show and Spider-Man: The Animated Series.

In the early 1990s, Bennett became a personal manager under the name Marianne Daniels. She went on to represent new and established artists for the next 20 years.

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Joe Diffie

Diffie, one of the most celebrated country artists of the 1990s, died March 29 from complications of the coronavirus, his publicist confirmed to PEOPLE. He was 61.

Two days before his death, the Grammy-winning artist announced he tested positive for the virus.

“I am under the care of medical professionals and currently receiving treatment after testing positive for coronavirus,” he wrote on social media. “We want to remind the public and all my fans to be vigilant, cautious and careful during this pandemic.”

The Tulsa, Oklahoma, native and Grand Ole Opry member had more than 20 Top 10 hits and 13 albums over his career, including five singles that reached No. 1 on the charts: “Home,” “Bigger Than the Beatles,” “If the Devil Danced (In Empty Pockets),” “Third Rock From the Sun” and “Pickup Man.” 

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Tomie dePaola

The beloved children’s book author and illustrator, best known for his Strega Nona series, died after suffering complications from surgery after falling in his New Hampshire home last week, his literary agent Doug Whiteman told CNN. He was 85.

Whiteman told the outlet that dePaola passed away at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, and was sadly alone because of visitor restrictions put in place due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

“Due to the coronavirus and a quarantine at the hospital where he was being treated, Mr. dePaola was in isolation when he died,” said Whiteman, according to the outlet.

Over the course of his career, DePaola was honored with several accolades, including the Children’s Literature Legacy Award in 2011 and, according to his agent, “was one of only a handful of children’s book creators to have received honors from both the Caldecott and Newbery Award committees of the American Library Association.”

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Maria Mercader

The CBS News journalist and producer died from coronavirus at a hospital in New York at the age of 54, according to an announcement from CBS on March 29.

According to the network, Mercader also “fought cancer and related illnesses for more than 20 years, and was an inspiration each time she returned to work after a setback threatened to end her life.”

Starting at the network in 1987 as part of its page program, Mercader worked her way up to the CBS News foreign and national desks and help produce some of the biggest stories — including the death of Princess Diana and the 9/11 attacks. She won a business reporting Emmy Award in 2004.

“Her notable professional contributions are part of the CBS Archives, but it is her magnificent human spirit that touched so many of us, that will stay with us forever,” said Ingrid Ciprian-Matthews, EVP of Strategic Professional Development at CBS News.

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Alan Merrill

The singer, guitarist, and songwriter died in New York as a result of the coronavirus on March 29. He was 69. 

Merrill was best known for writing the iconic track “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll.” He originally wrote and recorded the hit song while he was a member of the band the Arrows, who released the track in 1975. The song would later become a huge hit for Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, who topped the charts with the tune in 1982.

The musician’s death was announced by his daughter Laura on Facebook.

“The Coronavirus took my father this morning,” she wrote. “I was given 2 minutes to say my goodbyes before I was rushed out. … By the time I got in the doors to my apartment I received the news that he was gone.”

She urged that everyone take social distancing protocols seriously. “If anything can come of this I beg of you to take this seriously. Money doesn’t matter. People are dying,” she wrote. 

“Stay home if not for you…for others. For my dad.”

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Jan Howard

On March 28, the country singer-songwriter and longstanding member of the Grand Ole Opry died at age 91.

According to a statement from the Grand Ole Opry, where Howard was inducted in March 1971, the singer “passed away peacefully” in Gallatin, Tennessee. 

“Jan Howard was a force of nature in country music, at the Opry, and in life,” said Grand Ole Opry Vice President and Executive Producer Dan Rogers. 

Since her career began in 1960, she had more than 20 Top 40 solo singles, including “Bad Seed” and “Evil on Your Mind” — the latter of which earned her a Grammy Award nomination, in addition to her nomination for “My Son,” which honored her son Jimmy, who was killed while fighting in Vietnam.

The singer went on to work with the armed forces and veterans, and later received the Tennessee Adjutant General’s Distinguished Patriot Medal, its highest civilian honor.

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Rev. Joseph Lowery

The prominent and beloved figure in the civil rights movement died at his home in Atlanta of natural causes on March 27, multiple outlets reported. He was 98.

Tyler Perry, Jamie Foxx and more celebrities mourned Lowery’s loss on social media, with Martin Luther King Jr.’s youngest child Bernice also sharing a tribute to her “Uncle Joe.” 

“It’s hard to imagine a world or an Atlanta without Reverend #JosephLowery,” she wrote. “I’m grateful for a life well-lived and for its influence on mine. I’ll miss you, Uncle Joe. You finally made it up to see Aunt Evelyn again.” Lowery’s wife of 65 years, Evelyn, died in 2013.

Former President Barack Obama, who awarded Lowery the Medal of Freedom in 2009, also honored the late hero’s legacy on Instagram, writing that he “changed the face of America” and “did so much to carry us ever closer to the just, fair, inclusive, and generous America promised in our founding ideals.”

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John Callahan

The soap star best known for his role as Edmund Grey on the daytime soap opera All My Children died following a massive stroke on March 27.  He was 66.

His former costars and fellow soap actors paid tribute to Callahan, including Kelly Ripa, Sarah Michelle Gellar and his ex-wife Eva LaRue.

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Mark Blum

The Desperately Seeking Susan star died due to complications associated with the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), his representatives confirmed on March 26. He was 69.

The New Jersey native began his career on Broadway in 1977 and later moved to the big screen, where he was best known for his role as Madonna’s love interest in 1985’s Desperately Seeking Susan. 

In addition to landing several guest star roles on popular shows throughout his three-decade career, Blum had recurring roles on NYPD Blue (FBI Agent Mike Francis), Mozart in the Jungle (Union Bob), Succession (Bill), and You (Mr. Mooney). He also continued to act in shows on and Off-Broadway. 

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William Dufris

Dufris, who was the voice of Bob on Bob the Builder, has died.

Dufris’ company Pocket Universe Productions announced on March 25 that the co-founder had died of complications from cancer. He was 62, according to multiple reports.

“We are heartbroken to announce that the co-founder of @pocketplot and the director of ‘EC Comics Presents… The Vault of Horror’, William Dufris, has died from cancer. There is a hole in a lot of people’s hearts right now. We will have more to say later. Bless you, Bill,” the production company wrote on Twitter.

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Floyd Cardoz

The chef died on March 25 as a result of complications from coronavirus, a spokesperson for his Hunger Inc. Hospitality Group confirmed to PEOPLE. He was 59. His family confirmed his death to Indian publication Scroll.in.

The Top Chef Masters winner was first admitted to Mountainside Medical Center in New Jersey with a fever on March 18, and died there one week later.

At the time, he posted an update on his Instagram page, saying he sought medical help as a “precautionary measure.”

Cardoz was born in Bombay, India, and moved to New York City to work in restaurant kitchens. In 1997, he partnered with famed restaurateur Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group to open the contemporary Indian restaurant Tabla, which quickly became an iconic Manhattan establishment, earning three stars from the New York Times

Cardoz is survived by his wife and business partner, Barkha, whom he met at hospitality school in India, and their two sons, Peter, 27, and Justin, 22.

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Terrence McNally

The beloved contemporary theater playwright died on March 24 due to complications from the coronavirus. He was 81.

A spokesperson for McNally confirmed his death to PEOPLE.

A lung cancer survivor, McNally lived with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs.

He was being treated at the Sarasota Memorial Hospital in in Sarasota, Florida, at the time of his death.

Born on Nov. 3, 1938, in St. Petersburg, Florida, McNally grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas. He went on to attend Columbia University, and also held honorary degrees from the prestigious Juilliard School (1998) and New York University (2019).

Over McNally’s six-decade career, he wrote a series of diverse plays, musicals, operas, films and television projects. His works received national acclaim in the process and a slew of awards, including an Emmy, four Tony awards and a lifetime achievement Tony in 2019.

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Albert Uderzo

The artist who co-created France’s most beloved cartoon character, Asterix, with the writer René Goscinny, died at 92.

“Albert Uderzo died in his sleep at his home in Neuilly, after a heart attack that was not linked to the coronavirus. He had been extremely tired for the past several weeks,” his son-in-law Bernard de Choisy told Agence France-Presse news agency on March 24, according to CNN.

The artist’s comic work — often referred to as “the Disney of France” — was translated into over 100 languages and sold over 370 million copies worldwide. A large theme park dedicated to the characters sits just outside Paris. Uderzo’s work has generated over two dozen adaptions in animated and live-action films, with another currently in the works.

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Kenny Rogers

After years of being vocal about his ailing health, the Country Music Hall of Fame singer died on March 20. He was 81. 

“Rogers passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family,” the singer’s family said in a statement released on his social media the following day.

“The family is planning a small private service at this time out of concern for the national COVID-19 emergency. They look forward to celebrating Kenny’s life publicly with his friends and fans at a later date,” the statement added.

Born in Houston, Texas, on Aug. 21, 1938, Rogers began his music career in 1957 with his first song, “That Crazy Feeling” before rising to stardom with his cross-genre group, Kenny Rogers and The First Edition.

His illustrious career went on to span five decades, during which he sold more than 100 million records, won three Grammys and 18 American Music Awards.

His biggest hits included his signature song “The Gambler,” “Lucille,” “Ruby,” “Lady” and “Islands in the Stream” — his beloved duet with frequent collaborator Dolly Parton, which reached No. 1 on the pop charts in 1983.

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Roger Mayweather

The former boxing champion and uncle of Floyd Mayweather died on March 17. He was 58.

Floyd’s website announced the news, revealing that the late legendary boxer and trainer had long battled with diabetes and deteriorating health.

“My uncle was one of the most important people in my life inside and outside of the ring,” Floyd, 43, said in a statement. “Roger was a great champion and one of the best trainers in boxing. Unfortunately, his health was failing him for several years and now he can finally rest in peace.” 

Roger, a two-division boxing world champion, had a professional record of 59 wins and only 13 losses during his career, which lasted from 1981-1999.

Floyd added, “Roger meant the world to me, my father Floyd Sr., my uncle Jeff, our whole family, everyone in and around the Mayweather Boxing Gym and the entire boxing world. It is a terrible loss for all of us.”

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Lyle Waggoner

The Carol Burnett Show actor died on March 17 at the age of 84, PEOPLE confirmed.

The actor’s son, Jason, said he died peacefully with his wife, Sharon, by his side.

Best known for his work on The Carol Burnett Show from 1967 to 1974, Waggoner also starred as Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman during the latter half of the ’70s.

“He was funny, kind and multi-talented. But even more than that, a loving friend. I will miss him,” Burnett, 86, said in a statement.

The actor and comedian went on to appear in various TV shows, including The Love Boat, before retiring to start his own business — a company named “Star Waggons” that leased out trailers to the entertainment industry.

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Stuart Whitman

The San Francisco–born actor known for his work on screens both big and small since the 1950s died on March 16. He was 92.

“Old Hollywood lost another one of its true stars,” one of Whitman’s sons, Justin, confirmed to TMZ. He added that the actor died at his home in Montecito, California, surrounded by family.

“Stuart Whitman was known for his rugged roles and handsome charm,” the family said in a statement to the outlet. “We were proud of him for his TV, film roles and his Oscar nomination, but what we will really remember is his exuberant love of his family and friends.”

Whitman, with more than 180 acting credits across his decades-spanning career, earned a Best Actor nomination for an Academy Award in 1961 for his turn in The Mark.

In addition to his big screen roles, the star also had stints on TV series like Highway Patrol in the ’50s, Cimarron Strip in the ’60s, Fantasy Island in the ’70s and Superboy in the ’80s and ’90s.

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Max von Sydow

The celebrated Swedish actor, who memorably played a priest in the iconic horror film The Exorcist and starred as the Three-Eyed Raven in Game of Thrones, has died. He was 90.

Von Sydow died at his home in Provence, France on Sunday, March 8. His wife Catherine von Sydow, a documentary filmmaker and producer, confirmed his death to French press the following day.

“It’s with a broken heart and with infinite sadness that we have the extreme pain of announcing the departure of Max Von Sydow on March 8, 2020,” she said, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The couple married in 1997 after she worked as his assistant on some of his films. The two share two sons, and von Sydow shares two more sons with ex-wife, actress Christina Olin. He and Olin were married from 1951 to 1979.

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James Lipton

The New York Times reported that the longtime Inside the Actors Studio host died at home in New York City on March 2 at the age of 93. The prolific interviewer — who spoke to nearly every A-lister about their craft — had bladder cancer.

The Detroit native, who served in the Air Force, started out as an actor himself, though had more luck as a writer and later, producer.

His series, which began in 1994, aired on Bravo until 2019, when he left (it then moved to Ovation TV). The series has been nominated for 20 Emmy Awards in the outstanding informational series or special category and received the Emmy in 2013.

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Jack Welch

Welch, the former chairman and CEO of General Electric who was once dubbed the “Manager of the Century,” died March 1 at his home, CNBC reported. He was 84.

Welch, who grew GE into a powerhouse thanks in part to an emphasis on keeping only the most productive employees on board, died of renal failure, according to the outlet, which reported that he was surrounded by his wife Suzy and his family.

“More than anything else — leader, business icon, management genius — more than those things, although they are all true too — Jack was a lifeforce made of love,” Suzy Welch, whom he married in 2004, told CNBC in a statement. “His irrepressible passion for people, all people, his brilliant curiosity about every-single-thing-on-earth, his gargantuan generosity of spirit toward friends and strangers alike — they added up to a man who was superhuman yet completely human at once.”

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Joe Coulombe

Coulombe, who founded the inexpensive, trading post-themed grocery chain Trader Joe’s, died on Feb. 28 in Pasadena, California. He was 89.

Coulombe’s son, also named Joe, told The Associated Press that his father died after a long illness.

“Joe was an extraordinarily smart and accomplished entrepreneur who built a company that introduced something welcomingly different in the grocery retail space. Joe opened the first Trader Joe’s store in 1967 in Pasadena, California,” the company said in a press release. “Notably thrifty and insightful, Joe went against conventional industry norms at the time, moving away from national brands and introducing Trader Joe’s private label in 1972.”

“Joe was the perfect person at the right time for Trader Joe’s. He was a brilliant thinker with a mesmerizing personality that simply galvanized all with whom he worked. He was not only our founder, he was our first spokesperson. He starred in captivating radio ads for years, always signing off with his unique, ‘thanks for listening,’ ” added CEO Dan Bane. 

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Claudette Nevins

The Hollywood star’s family confirmed in a statement and announced she died in hospice on Feb. 20 at her home in Los Angeles. She was 82.

“Claudette’s acting career spanned six decades and included roles on Broadway, regional theater, national companies, numerous television shows, voiceovers and commercials,” the family’s statement read. “Competent in everything she touched, Claudette was funny, strong-willed, awesomely disciplined, relentless in her pursuit of excellence. Starting from very humble origins, Claudette grew herself into an elegant, articulate, gorgeous woman who was universally admired. She was dazzling. She will be endlessly missed.”

Nevins was well known for her Broadway roles in Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite, as well as her time performing during the national tour of The Great White Hope, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

She also had recurring roles in the ’90s television drama Melrose Place and the ’70s CBS series Headmaster in which she portrayed Andy Griffith’s wife.

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Lee Phillip Bell

Bell, who co-created The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful with her late husband William J. Bell, died on Feb. 25. She was 91. 

“Our mother was a loving and supportive wife, mother and grandmother,” her children William James Bell, Bradley Phillip Bell and Lauralee Bell Martin said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.

“Gracious and kind, she enriched the lives of all who knew her. We will miss her tremendously,” their statement continued. 

In addition to creating the beloved soap operas, the Emmy winner also had a successful broadcast journalism career, during which she hosted The Lee Phillip Show for over 30 years on CBS.

Bell won the Daytime Emmys’ lifetime achievement award in 2007, in addition to several other awards throughout her impressive career. 

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Camila María Concepción

The trans Latina activist and Gentefied writer died by an apparent suicide on Feb. 21. She was 28. 

Friends and colleagues confirmed her death on social media following the premiere of the Netflix series.

Concepción, who grew up in the Inland Empire area, studied English literature at Yale University before working with Transparent creator Jill Soloway under 50/50 by 2020, an initiative campaigning for gender parity in film, TV and art. She went on to work on Netflix’s show Daybreak before landing a position as writer’s assistant on Gentefied

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Ben Cooper

The actor gained fame starring in many Hollywood Westerns in the 1950s and ’60s, including Johnny Guitar, Gunfight at Comanche Creek and Gunsmoke.

He died on Feb. 24 at age 86 at his home in Memphis after a long illness.

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David Roback

The legendary guitarist and cofounder of the band Mazzy Star died Feb. 24 at age 61, his rep confirmed.

The Los Angeles Times described him as “reclusive” and “press-shy,” but his band’s music was a staple for many in the ’90s and continues to be used in film and TV today.

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B. Smith

Smith, who got her start as a model before becoming a famous restauteur and lifestyle guru, died at age 70 on Feb. 22 after a battle with early-onset Alzheimer’s.

Born Barbara Elaine Smith (but known as B.), the star was one of the first African–American women to grace the cover of Mademoiselle magazine. She went on to open three eponymous restaurants, write three cookbooks and host the nationally syndicated show, B. Smith With Style.

After she received her diagnosis in 2013, she and husband Dan Gasby went public with the news in order to bring awareness to the difficulties caused by the disease for both those suffering from it and their caregivers.

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Pop Smoke

The up-and-coming rapper, 20, died from a gunshot during an alleged home invasion on Feb. 19.

Other musicians paid tribute to the young star (born Bashar Barakah Jackson) after news of his death spread. “You were too young,” Chance the Rapper wrote on Twitter. “God Bless and comfort your family. What a crazy trajectory you were on man smh.”

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Ja’Net DuBois

The star of Good Times, and the singer and co-writer of the Jeffersons theme song, DuBois died at age 74 at her home in Glendale, Calif. on Feb. 17.

In addition to her most beloved roles, DuBois acted on Broadway and in shows including The Love Boat and ER.

She was remembered fondly by many former costars, including Janet Jackson, who wrote “I am so very saddened to hear my longtime friend Ja’Net DuBois has passed away. I saw first hand how she broke stereotypes and changed the landscape for Black women in entertainment … I’ll miss you.”

 

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Kellye Nakahara

Known best for her role as Lt. Kellye Yamato on the ’70s hit show M*A*S*H, the actress died of cancer at age 72, surrounded by family and friends at her home on Feb. 15.

Former costars expressed admiration for the actress, who also appeared on Little House on the Prairie and NYPD Blue.

“What a good, feeling person she always was. Sensitive, kind and talented,” Alan Alda said

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Jason Davis

The actor — perhaps best known for voicing Recess‘ Mikey Blumberg during the animated series’ six-season run in the late 1990s and early 2000s — died at age 35 on Feb. 16, his mother confirmed. The cause of death was unknown at the time.

In a statement, Nancy Davis said, “Jason had a true heart of gold with such a zest for life. He was such a caring soul to everybody who ever knew him. He loved his friends and his family above all else.”

 

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Raphael Coleman

The child star of Nanny McPhee turned environmental activist died during a Feb. 6 run at age 25.

His mother confirmed the news on social media, writing ““He died doing what he loved, working for the noblest cause of all. His family could not be prouder. Let’s celebrate all he achieved in his short life and cherish his legacy.”

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Nikita Pearl Waligwa

The young actress, who had a featured role in Queen of Katwe, died at age 15 of a brain tumor, multiple outlets reported. The film’s director Mira Nair had helped raise funds for treatment during an earlier bout with the illness, but it returned a few years later.

Nyong’o paid tribute to her young costar, writing “It is with great sadness that I post about the passing of Nikita Waligwa, the sweet, warm, talented girl whom I worked with on the film, Queen Of Katwe. She played Gloria with such vibrancy.”

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Lynn Cohen

Cohen, who starred for three seasons on Sex and the City as Magda (and reprised the role in the films) died Feb. 14 at age 86.

Wrote Cynthia Nixon, her costar on the series, “Many people knew & loved Lynn Cohen as Miranda’s stalwart Polish nanny Magda. To me she was that & so much more — an involved citizen, a true friend & a great actress in so many different roles.”

Those included parts in The Hunger Games, Munich and Damages.

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Orson Bean

The actor and comedian, who frequently appeared on the game show To Tell the Truth, died at age 91 after being hit by a car in Los Angeles Feb. 14.

He had recently starred with his wife, actress Alley Mills, in the world premiere of a new play at the Ruskin Group Theatre in Santa Monica, which ended its run the week before he died. He also kept up his work on television, with roles on Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, How I Met Your Mother and Modern Family.

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Robert Conrad

Conrad, best known for his role in the television show The Wild Wild West, died at 84 in February.

He had many roles on television in the ’50s and ’60s, and recorded music as Bob Conrad at the same time. He was inducted into the Stuntman’s Hall of Fame.

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Caroline Flack

The former Love Island host died at home on Feb. 15 at age 40.

“We can confirm that our Caroline passed away today on the 15th February,” her family said in a statement given to the U.K.’s Press Association. “We would ask that the press both respect the privacy of the family at this difficult time.”

Paramedics were called to her London home the night before her death, but after assessing the situation it was decided that she did not need hospital treatment and that she was fit to be left at home.

Flack stepped down as host of Love Island, which she had fronted since its debut in 2015, in December 2019, after being charged with assault by beating following a reported domestic indicdent involving her boyfriend Lewis Burton, who has denied the incident. 

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Amie Harwick

Harwick, a well known Hollywood sex and family therapist and the former fiancée of Drew Carey, died after falling from a balcony on Feb. 15. She was 38. 

The Los Angeles Police Department arrested a former boyfriend of Harwick’s, whom they believe attacked her after a restraining order against him had expired, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Carey mourned the loss of The New Sex Bible for Women author, telling PEOPLE, “Amie and I had a love that people are lucky to have once in a lifetime.” He added, “She was positive force in the world, a tireless and unapologetic champion for women, and passionate about her work as a therapist. I am overcome with grief.”

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Kirk Douglas

The Hollywood icon died on Feb. 5, 2020. He was 103.

“It is with tremendous sadness that my brothers and I announce that Kirk Douglas left us today at the age of 103,” Michael Douglas said in a statement to PEOPLE. “To the world, he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years, a humanitarian whose commitment to justice and the causes he believed in set a standard for all of us to aspire to.”

Michael continued, “But to me and my brothers Joel and Peter he was simply Dad, to Catherine, a wonderful father-in-law, to his grandchildren and great grandchild their loving grandfather, and to his wife Anne, a wonderful husband.”

“Kirk’s life was well lived, and he leaves a legacy in film that will endure for generations to come, and a history as a renowned philanthropist who worked to aid the public and bring peace to the planet,” Michael added. “Let me end with the words I told him on his last birthday and which will always remain true. Dad- I love you so much and I am so proud to be your son.”

The Spartacus acting legend, who had been in good health since suffering a stroke in 1996, is survived by his wife of 65 years, Anne, and his sons Michael, Joel, and Peter.

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Kobe Bryant

The basketball icon died in Calabasas, California in a helicopter crash the morning of Jan. 26, 2020, a source confirmed to PEOPLE. He was 41.

Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, was also onboard the private helicopter when it went down on Sunday, reps for the former basketball player told TMZ Sports.

Sources told ESPN that the helicopter was headed to a travel basketball game for Gianna, and that the other passengers were another player and their parent.

Spokespersons for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and L.A. Police Department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

Bryant is survived by wife Vanessa, 37, and their daughters Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months.

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Norma Michaels

Actress Michaels, most recognized for her role as Josephine on King of Queens, died on Jan. 11. She was 95.

A statement by her spokesperson announced that Michaels passed away peacefully at her home in Palm Springs, California.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Michaels’ acting career began in 1954 on The George Gobel Show and went on to span six decades across both film and television. Some of her most memorable appearances include Modern FamilyBrooklyn Nine-NineEverybody Loves RaymondGilmore Girls and Malcolm in the Middle.

Her last role was as Sally Field’s mother in 2015’s indie hit Hello, My Name Is Doris.

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Rocky Johnson

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s father, Canadian professional wrestler Rocky Johnson died in January at age 75.

World Wrestling Entertainment confirmed the news on its website on Jan. 15, writing, “WWE is saddened to learn that Rocky ‘Soul Man’ Johnson (born Wayde Douglas Bowles), a WWE Hall of Famer, former World Tag Team Champion, and father of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, has passed away at age 75.”

Born in Nova Scotia, Canada, Rocky began wrestling when he was 16 years old. He started his career in 1964 and went on to join the WWE in 1983 when he began wrestling with Tony Atlas. The duo became a part of the first African-American tag team — known as The Soul Patrol — to win the World Tag Team Championship in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF).

After retiring in 1991, Rocky continued to train his son, actor Dwayne, to follow in his footsteps as a wrestler.

“Dad, I wish I had one more shot to tell you, I love you, before you crossed over to the other side,” Dwayne, 47, said in an emotional tribute on Instagram after his father’s passing. “But you were ripped away from me so fast without warning. Gone in an instant and no coming back. Im in pain. But we know it’s just pain and it’ll pass.”

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Stan Kirsch

Highlander actor Kirsch died by apparent suicide, his wife Kristyn Green confirmed on Facebook on Jan. 13. He was 51.

According to TMZ, Kirsch was discovered by his wife in their Los Angeles home. Paramedics were called, but the actor was pronounced dead on the scene.

Kirsch is best known for his starring role as Richie Ryan on the original Highlander television series for six seasons from 1992 to 1998.

At the time of his death, Kirsch was working as an acting coach in Los Angeles. His other TV credits include JAGInvincible, and one episode of Friends in season 1, when he memorably played a high school student lying about his age to date Monica (Courteney Cox).

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Neil Peart

Rush’s legendary drummer and lyricist died after a years-long battle with brain cancer on Jan. 7. He was 67.

“It is with broken hearts and the deepest sadness that we must share the terrible news that on Tuesday our friend, soul brother and band mate of over 45 years, Neil, has lost his incredibly brave three and a half year battle with brain cancer (Glioblastoma),” bandmates Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson wrote in a statement on Twitter.

Peart joined Lee and Lifeson in 1974, and earned his place as one of the greatest drummers in rock history over the course of his decades-long career. 

In addition to his time with the band, Peart also released a number of books including Ghost Rider: Travels on the Healing Road and Far and Away: A Prize Every Time. 

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Scott Patric

The celebrity hair and makeup artist famous for his work on Project Runway died of a heart attack in his sleep in his New York City apartment on Jan. 8. He was 53.

“It is with a heavy heart that I can confirm makeup artist Scott Patric has passed,” read the statement from Contact. “He was found today in his bed after not responding to calls. His talent, creativity and warmth were limitless. He will be greatly missed.”

From 2012 to 2019, Patrick worked as a makeup consultant and glamour lead on Project Runway and a number of the competition series’ spin-offs, including All StarsThreads and Junior.

Scott’s editorial work has appeared in magazines like Vogue and Glamour, and according to his official website, he has styled a range of A-listers, including Angelina Jolie, Katie Holmes, Kerry Washington, Madonna, Paris Hilton and Dwayne Johnson.

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Edd Byrnes

Byrnes, an actor best known for his portrayal of suave radio announcer Vince Fontaine in 1978’s Grease, died on Jan. 8. He was 87.

Byrnes’ son, news anchor Logan Byrnes, confirmed the news on Twitter, writing, “It is with profound sadness and grief that I share with you the passing of my father Edd Byrnes.”

“He was an amazing man and one of my best friends,” Logan continued, adding a press release that stated the actor had “died unexpectedly” of “natural causes” at his home in Santa Monica, California.

In addition to his role in Grease, Byrnes was known for his turn as Kookie in the TV series 77 Sunset Strip, and continued guest-starring in shows such as CHiPs, House Calls, Charlie’s Angels, Vega$, The Love Boat and Fantasy Island.

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Alexis Eddy

Eddy, a smiling and self-proclaimed “redneck” from West Virginia who appeared on MTV’s Are You the One? season 6, died on Jan. 9, West Virginia’s Mannington Police Department confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 23.

The police received a call from Eddy’s home just before 7 a.m. ET, and upon arrival found a female who suffered from cardiac arrest. She was pronounced dead on the scene. The cause of death is not yet known, and police could not comment on whether foul play is suspected.

“MTV is deeply saddened to hear about the tragic loss of Alexis Eddy. Our hearts go out to her family and friends during this difficult time,” MTV said a statement on Are You the One?‘s Twitter account.

Eddy openly discussed her struggle with drug abuse during her time on the show in 2017. In recent months, however, she posted to social media about being “clean and sober” and feeling “so very blessed.” 

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Buck Henry

The legendary Oscar-nominated screenwriter, actor and director Henry died of a heart attack at Cedars-Sinai Health Center in Los Angeles on Jan. 8. He was 89.

Born in New York City on Dec. 9, 1930, Henry achieved fame and an Oscar nomination for writing The Graduate screenplay, as well as for Catch-22 and co-creating Get Smart.

Henry is also a founding member of Saturday Night Live’s Five-Timers Club, which consists of members who have hosted the comedy sketch show five or more times. Henry hosted 10 times. 

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Elizabeth Wurtzel

The controversial author of Prozac Nation — who popularized confessional-style memoirs and opened up the national conversation around depression — died on Jan. 7 at the age of 52.

Her husband, Jim Freed, confirmed to The Washington Post that she’d been battling metastatic breast cancer, which then spread to her brain. She died due to complications from leptomeningeal disease in Manhattan, according to the newspaper.

Wurtzel was just 26 when Prozac Nation — a hyper-personal account of her struggles with depression, her dependency on drugs, and her sex life — was published, and indelibly shaped the future of the memoir genre.

Friends and fans paid tribute to the author, who went on to write several more books including Bitch: In Praise of Difficult Women (1998) and More, Now, Again: A Memoir of Addiction (2001). Ronan Farrow shared a heartfelt tribute which encouraged fans to get tested for the BRCA gene, which she advocated for after her breast cancer diagnosis. 

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Silvio Horta

Ugly Betty creator Horta died by suicide on Jan. 7 in Miami. He was 45.

Horta was best known for creating the beloved ABC comedy Ugly Betty, which ran from 2006 to 2010 and starred America Ferrera as the titular character.

The long-running series nabbed Horta an Emmy nomination in 2007 for outstanding comedy series, and a Golden Globe for best television series — comedy or musical.

“I’m stunned and heartbroken to hear the devastating news of Ugly Betty creator, Silvio Horta’s death,” Ferrera wrote in an emotional tribute on Instagram.

“His talent and creativity brought me and so many others such joy & light,” she continued. “I’m thinking of his family and loved ones who must be in so much pain right now- and of the whole Ugly Betty family who feel this loss so deeply.”

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