Amy Winehouse died in London over the weekend at the age of 27. She tragically joins the ranks of many notable musicians that passed away at this young age. Winehouse's albums include Back to Black and Frank.
Popular mystery writer, Lilian Jackson Braun passed away earlier this week in South Carolina at the age of 97. Her "The Cat Who ..." series began in 1966 with The Cat Who Could Read Backwards and includes 29 mystery novels and at least 2 short story collections.
Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor born on February 27, 1932 passed away of congestive heart failure on March 23, 2011. A Hollywood Legend, she was often referred to as "The Most Beautiful Woman in the World." Known for her charitable works and tumultuous relationships she also provided the voice for Maggie Simpson!
Jane Russell, pin-up girl and Hollywood heartthrob, sadly passed away on Monday evening in her home. Signed to a seven-year contract by billionaire Howard Hughes, Jane Russell appeared in movies with Robert Mitchum, Frank Sinatra and Bob Hope. She details much of her life in her autobiography, Jane Russell: My Path & My Detours.
Beloved author Brian Jacques passed away earlier this week. The Redwall Abbey series, his most notable works, were originally written for the Royal Wavertree School for the Blind, his favorite stop while delivering milk. Even though he is no longer with us, the magical worlds he created will live forever.
On December 8, 1980, John Lennon died in front of his Manhattan home.
It was the first "Kennedy moment" in my life, a memory that still seems fresh, almost like it happened yesterday. My ritual of falling asleep while listening to an old-school "digital" clock radio (the one with the rotating flat panels for each number), was jarringly interrupted by the breaking news that John Lennon had been shot in New York City. I leapt out of bed, ran downstairs, and stood motionless in front of the TV as Howard Cosell, on Monday Night Football, announced that John Lennon was dead. One of my heroes had been murdered, and it simply did not make any sense.
Funnyman Leslie Nielsen passed away on November 28 saddening the comedy world. In addition to starring in TV shows like Route 66 and Police Squad, Mr. Nielsen has appeared in over 200 films during his long and illustrious career.
Selected films with appearances by Leslie Nielsen owned by the Denver Public Library:
Opera fans' hearts broke this week with the news of Joan Sutherland's death. She had a phenomenal vocal range, size and quality of voice that raised the standard of operatic performance. Her friend Luciano Pavarotti called Sutherland the "Voice of the Century." Her highest note was a high F-sharp and her voice remained clear and strong throughout her range.
Tony Curtis, Oscar-nominated actor, died in his Las Vegas home on Wednesday evening. His first of six wives, Janet Leigh, is the mother of his daughter, Jamie Lee Curtis. Born Bernard Schwartz in 1925, Tony Curtis led a bold and stellar life.