KAREN CARPENTER - February 4
Wow, what a big, fat pig she always was.
Popular lead singer of The Carpenters,
one of the top pop groups of the 1970s.
(Age: 32. C.O.D.: Heart attack due to anorexia.)
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS - February 24
Now that southern writer has really gone down south.
Playwright who penned passion-laden potboilers
including A Streetcar Named Desire,
and Cat On A Hot Tin Roof.
(Age: 71. C.O.D.: Alcohol overdose.)
ARTHUR GODFREY - March 16
Maybe all that goofy red hair
gave him that awful temper.
Carrot-topped radio and TV host
of many different variety productions,
including his own TV project,
The Arthur Godfrey Show.
(Age: 79. C.O.D.: Heart attack.)
GLORIA SWANSON - April 4
She wasn't eagerly awaiting this close-up.
Silent movie icon mainly known for Sunset Boulevard.
BUSTER CRABBE - April 23
He ain't crabbin' 'bout nothin' anymore.
An Olympic swimmer turned actor,
he went on to star in several
Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers,
Tarzan, and western movie serials.
JACK DEMPSEY - May 31
Great Irish world heavyweight champion boxer.
NORMA SHEARER - June 12
Won an Oscar, and was married to
MGM boy-wonder Irving Thalberg.
(Age: 82. C.O.D.: Heart attack.)
BUCKMINSTER FULLER - July 1
Architect and engineer genius who also
came up with "Bucky balls" and geodesic domes.
HARRY JAMES - July 5
Bandleader and trumpet player
who discovered Frank Sinatra.
Was also married to actress/singer Betty Grable.
(Age: 73. C.O.D.: Cancer.)
RAYMOND MASSEY - July 29
Veteran actor of many films, including
Abraham Lincoln, East Of Eden and Dr. Kildare.
(Age: 86. C.O.D.: Pnemonia.)
DAVID NIVEN - July 29
(Same day as Raymond Massey.)
Appeared as a classy guy in many films,
including Please Don't Eat The Daisies,
and played Phineas Fogg in Around The
World In Eighty Days. Also made a memorable
ad-lib about a steaker's shortcomings
during the live 1974 Oscar telecast.
Wrote some good bios, like The Moon's A Balloon.
(Age: 73. C.O.D.: ALS.)
CAROLYN JONES - August 3
Movie actress (King Creole) who played
the sexy Morticia on the TV comedy series
The Addams Family, and was married to
Aaron Spelling before Tori's mom was.
(Age: 54. C.O.D.: Cancer.)
IRA GERSHWIN - August 17
Wrote the lyrics to his brother George's tunes,
used in musicals including Porgy And Bess.
JAN CLAYTON - August 28
Played the first mom on the TV series Lassie.
SIMON OAKLAND - August 29
(Day after Jan Clayton.)
Frequently played a cop,
notably in West Side Story,
and the TV series The Nightstalker.
JOAN HACKETT - October 8
She just couldn't hack it anymore.
Actress in many films,
including Only When I Laugh.
(Age: 49. C.O.D.: Cancer.)
PAT O'BRIEN - October 15
Actor who invariably played Irishmen,
and often co-starred with James Cagney
(Angels with Dirty Faces).
(Age: 83. C.O.D.: Heart attack.)
CHRISTOPHER GEORGE - November 28
Actor who starred in the TV series
The Rat Patrol. Also married Lynda Day
of the TV series Mission: Impossible.
(Age: 52. C.O.D.: Heart attack.)
ROBERT ALDRICH - December 5
Directed several great movies, including the
cult classic What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?
(Age: 65. C.O.D.: Kidney failure.)
SLIM PICKENS - December 8
Comic cowboy and bomb-rider. Yee-haw!
WILLIAM DEMAREST - December 28
Veteran character actor who played
Uncle Charlie on the 1960s
TV series My Three Sons.
DENNIS WILSON - December 28
(Same day as William Demarest.)
Beach Boys band member who
survived a close encounter with
Charles Manson in 1968, but didn't
survive getting drunk and going swimming.
(Age: 39. C.O.D.: Drowning.)
= WELL, THAT'S ALL FOR THIS YEAR, FOLKS! BUT STAY TUNED - YOU KNOW THE GRIM REAPER AIN'T DONE WITH THOSE CELEBS YET! MEANWHILE, ON THE UPPER RIGHT YOU CAN ALWAYS CHECK OUT THE LIST OF LATE LAMENTED LAYABOUTS FROM OTHER YEARS! ENJOY! =