Howard Mudd, 78, a former NFL All-Pro player and longtime offensive line coach, has died. The Indianapolis Colts announced Mudd’s death Wednesday. No details of his death were provided by the team. Mudd had been in a motorcycle accident in the Seattle area recently.
Mudd coached the offensive line with the Colts from 1998-2009 and rejoined the team as a senior offensive assistant in 2019. Indianapolis was one of many stops in Mudd’s coaching career that included time with Philadelphia, Kansas City, Cleveland, Seattle, San Francisco and the San Diego Chargers. His coaching career started at the college level with two seasons as the offensive line coach at California in 1972-73.
His coaching prowess followed a brief but successful NFL playing career. Mudd spent eight seasons with Chicago and San Francisco. Three times he was voted a Pro Bowl starter and was a first-team All-Pro selection in 1968 with the 49ers. He grew up in Midland, Michigan, and played in college at Hillsdale.
Sumner Redstone, 97, who joined his family’s drive-in movie chain in the 1950s and used it to build a vast media empire that included CBS and Viacom, died Tuesday. No other information about his death was disclosed.
Under his watch, Viacom became one of the nation’s media titans, home to pay TV channels MTV and Comedy Central and movie studio Paramount Pictures. The company, which he led for decades, was built through aggressive acquisitions, but many headlines with his name focused on severed ties with wives, actors and executives.
Trini Lopez, 83, who had worldwide hit records in the early 1960s by creating a unique mix of American folk, Latin and rockabilly music, died of complications of COVID-19 on Tuesday in Rancho Mirage, California.
At a commercially rich time for folk music, Lopez drew on the beauty of the genre’s tunes while souping them up with the sharp rockabilly beats employed by hitmakers such as Buddy Holly and Carl Perkins. “Making songs danceable helped me a lot,” Lopez told The Classic Rock Music Reporter in 2014.
Russell Kirsch, 91, a computer scientist credited with inventing the pixel and scanning the world’s first digital photograph, died Tuesday at his home in Portland, The Oregonian reported.
Pixels, the digital dots used to display photos, video and more on phone and computer screens, weren’t an obvious innovation in 1957, when Kirsch created a small, 2-by-2-inch black-and-white digital image of his son, Walden, as an infant. That was among the first images ever scanned into a computer, using a device created by his research team at the U.S. National Bureau of Standards (now the National Institutes of Science and Technology).
Konrad Steffen, 68, one of the world’s foremost climate scientists whose 30-year study of Greenland’s ice sheet confirmed the rising temperatures and sea levels that are a hallmark of global climate change, died Aug. 8 in Greenland after he fell into a crevasse while conducting research on the ice. According to Swiss media reports, citing the Greenland newspaper Sermitsiaq, police in the village of Ilulissat had been alerted on that Saturday afternoon about the fall. Rescue attempts were unsuccessful.
Ryan R. Neely III, a climate scientist at the University of Leeds who studied under Steffen, called his old mentor a “larger than life explorer-scientist that you typically only get the chance to read about.”
Understanding Greenland’s ice sheet is crucial to understanding climate change and sea level rise. Current projections say that if the planet warms by 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over preindustrial times, average sea levels will rise by more than 2 feet, and 32 million to 80 million people will be exposed to coastal flooding.
Bernard Bailyn, 97, who reshaped the study of early American history with seminal works on merchants and migrants, politics and government, and recast the study of the origins of the American Revolution, died Friday at his home in Belmont, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston. The cause was heart failure.
Matt Herron, 89, a photojournalist who vividly memorialized the most portentous and promising moments from the front lines of the 1960s civil rights movement in the Deep South, died Aug. 7 when a glider he was piloting crashed in Northern California.
Frances Allen, 88, a computer scientist and researcher who helped create the fundamental ideas that allow practically anyone to build fast, efficient and useful software for computers, smartphones and websites, died Aug. 4, on her birthday, in Schenectady, New York. The cause was Alzheimer’s disease.
Allen and her fellow researchers at IBM spent four decades refining a key component of modern computing: the “compiler,” the software technology that takes in programs written by humans and turns them into something that computers can understand. For Allen, the aim was to do this as efficiently as possible so programmers could build software in simple and intuitive ways and then have it run quickly and smoothly when deployed on real-world machines.
Together with researcher John Cocke, she published a series of landmark papers in the late 1960s and ’70s describing this delicate balance between ease of creation and speed of execution. These ideas helped drive the evolution of computer programming — all the way to the present day, when even relative novices can easily build fast and efficient software apps for a world of computers, smartphones and other devices.
In 2006, on the strength of this work, Allen became the first woman to win the A.M. Turing Award, often called the Nobel Prize of computing.
Carol Brock, 96, a food writer who helped women advance in the male-dominated culinary world by starting an organization called Les Dames d’Escoffier New York, died from respiratory failure July 27 in Manhasset, New York.
As a veteran food journalist at The Daily News in New York, Brock saw what she called a “Pyrex ceiling” limiting women in the food, beverage and hospitality industries. So in 1976 she formed Les Dames as an offshoot of Les Amis d’Escoffier Society, a mostly male gastronomic club named after French chef Auguste Escoffier (1846-1935).
The parent organization, however, struck her as narrowly concerned with consuming great food and wine, and talking about it. Brock saw a need for something more. Her group would provide scholarships, educational programs and networking opportunities for women. Les Dames is now international, with 45 chapters and 2,400 members.
Lorenzo Wilson Milam, 86, who devoted much of his life to building noncommercial radio stations with eclectic fusions of music, talk and public affairs, died July 19 in Puerto Escondido, Mexico. Milam moved full time to Mexico from San Diego after having several strokes in 2017.
Milam loathed commercial radio stations, which he saw as purveyors of mindless junk. With KRAB, in Seattle, and about a dozen other stations that he helped start in the 1960s and ’70s, he created a freewheeling, esoteric vision of commercial-free community radio as the voice of the people it served.
KRAB’s on-air menu featured ethnic and classical music, readings (poetry, newspaper articles, children’s books, histories and scientific journals), commentary (some of it rantings by radicals on both the left and right), panel discussions, radio plays, interviews and programming produced by local groups, among them a fringe White Citizens’ Council. “Broadcast time is too valuable to be sold,” Milam said in an interview on the “Mike Wallace at Large” radio program. “I think it should be given away — and I think it should be given away with a rose.”