Notable deaths from the week of Dec. 23, 2012
Jean Harris, 89, the patrician girls’ school headmistress who spent 12 years in prison for the 1980 killing of her longtime lover, “Scarsdale Diet” doctor Herman Tarnower, in a case that rallied feminists and inspired television movies, died Dec. 23 in New Haven, Conn.
H. Norman Schwarzkopf, 78, the general who was known popularly as “Stormin’ Norman” and commanded the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein’s forces out of Kuwait in 1991, died Thursday of complications from pneumonia in Tampa.
Sir Richard Rodney Bennett, 76, British composer, pianist and arranger who was nominated three times for Academy Awards, died Monday after a brief illness in New York City. He was nominated for Oscars for the scores for “Far from the Madding Crowd,” “Nicholas and Alexandra” and “Murder on the Orient Express” in 1974.
Elwood V. Jensen, 92, a medical researcher whose studies of steroid hormones led to new treatments for breast cancer that have been credited with saving or extending hundreds of thousands of lives, died on Dec. 16 of complications of pneumonia, in Cincinnati. In 2004 Jensen received the Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award, one of the most respected science prizes in the world.
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Ray Collins, mid-70s, a singer who, with guitarist Frank Zappa, formed the avant-garde rock group the Mothers of Invention, died Monday in Pomona, Calif. His death followed his admission to Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center about a week earlier for cardiac arrest.
Fontella Bass, 72, a St. Louis-born soul singer who hit the top of the R&B charts with “Rescue Me” in 1965, died Wednesday at a St. Louis hospice of complications from a heart attack suffered three weeks ago.
Frank Calabrese Sr., 75, a Chicago hit man who strangled victims and then slashed their throats to be sure they were dead, died Tuesday in a federal prison in North Carolina, authorities said.
Gerry Anderson, 83, puppetry pioneer and British creator of the sci-fi hit “Thunderbirds” TV show, died Wednesday in a nursing home near Oxfordshire, England.
Charles Durning, 89, who was often called the ultimate character actor because of his ability to inhabit almost any role, from everyday workingman to politician to priest, and who saw some of the fiercest combat in Europe during World War II, died Monday at his home in New York City.
Jimmy McCracklin, 91, a popular blues singer and pianist whose career spanned more than six decades and whose songs were recorded by such performers as Otis Redding, Joe Tex, Elvin Bishop and Jerry Garcia, died Dec. 20 at a nursing facility in San Pablo, Calif.
Jack Klugman, 90, who played the sports-loving Oscar Madison in “The Odd Couple” and starred in the TV show “Quincy, M.E.” died Monday in Los Angeles.
Richard Adams, 65, who nearly four decades ago legally married his male partner in Colorado and, in the first lawsuit of its kind, tried unsuccessfully to have their marriage recognized by the federal government, died after a short illness Dec. 17 at his home in Los Angeles.
Albert O. Hirschman, 97, who in his youth helped rescue thousands of artists and intellectuals from Nazi-occupied France and went on to become an influential economist known for his optimism, died Dec. 10 in Ewing Township, N.J.
Lee Dorman, 70, a bass guitarist for the psychedelic rock band Iron Butterfly, who played on one of the genre’s most recognizable songs, “In-a-Gadda-da-Vida,” died Dec. 21 in Laguna Niguel, Calif. Dorman was found dead in his car outside his home.