A roundup of notable obituaries from the week ending April 21.
Cuba Gooding Sr., 72, the soul singer and father of Oscar-winning actor Cuba Gooding Jr., was found dead in his car Thursday in Woodland Hills, officials said. The cause of death is still to be determined. Gooding Sr. rose to fame in the 1970s as the lead singer of The Main Ingredient and was known for hits including “Everybody Plays the Fool” and “Just Don’t Want to be Lonely.”
Germaine Mason, 34, who won an Olympic silver medal for Britain in the high jump at the 2008 Beijing summer games, died Thursday in a motorcycle crash in the outskirts of Kingston, in his native Jamaica. Sprinter Usain Bolt and other athletes rushed to the site of the accident. Mason was taken to a hospital but did not survived.
Ruth Sulzberger Holmberg, 96, who challenged racial barriers, political skulduggery and environmental adversaries as publisher of The Chattanooga Times in Tennessee for nearly three decades, and who was a member of the family that controls The New York Times, died Wednesday at her home in Chattanooga.
Dorrance Hill Hamilton, 88, whose grandfather invented the process used to make Campbell’s condensed soups and who used her inherited fortune for philanthropy, died Tuesday at her home in Boca Grande, Florida. The cause of death wasn’t disclosed.
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Sylvia Moy, 78, a Motown songwriter and producer who collaborated with Stevie Wonder on “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” and “My Cherie Amour,” and who was a co-writer of hits for the Marvin Gaye-Kim Weston duet and the Isley Brothers, died April 15 from complications of pneumonia in Dearborn, Michigan.
Bruce Langhorne, 78, an intuitive guitarist who played a crucial role in the transition from folk music to folk-rock, notably through his work with Bob Dylan, died from kidney failure April 14, at his home in Venice, California. Dylan credited Langhorne with inspiring “Mr. Tambourine Man,” recalling in 1985 that the song came to him after seeing Langhorne arrive for a 1964 recording session with an oversize Turkish drum arrayed with bells.
Robert W. Taylor, 85, one of the great minds who revolutionized the field of computer science, died April 13 at his home in Woodside, California. The cause was complications of Parkinson’s disease.
In 1966, at the Pentagon, his idea to link computers into a network led to the Arpanet, the forerunner of the internet. Five years later, at Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center in Northern California, he took part into another breakthrough: the Alto computer, which is widely described as the precursor of the personal computer. At NASA, he directed resources into the research that eventually produced the computer mouse.
Toward the end of his career, in the 1990s, Mr. Taylor created and ran the Digital Equipment Systems Research Laboratory in Palo Alto, which helped create one of the first internet search engines, AltaVista.
Harry Huskey, 101, one of the last surviving scientists in the vanguard of the computer revolution, who helped develop what was once billed as the first personal computer because it took only one person to operate, though it was the size of two refrigerators, died April 9 at his home in Santa Cruz, California.