Liberty Just in Case

A Dialogue for the September 12th World

Year in Review… Those We Lost

Posted by Mark on December 31, 2005


Shirley Chisholm, 80. First black woman elected to Congress; first black person to seek a major party’s presidential nomination. Jan. 1.

Will Eisner, 87. Artist who revolutionized comic books (“The Spirit”), helped pioneer the graphic novel. Jan. 3.

Rosemary Kennedy, 86. Mentally handicapped sister of President Kennedy; inspiration for the Special Olympics. Jan. 7.

Walter B. Wriston, 85. Citicorp chairman; oversaw development of ATMs, growth of credit card lending. Jan. 19. (So he’s who I blame for all my portable debt.)

Johnny Carson, 79. Quick-witted “Tonight Show” host who became a national institution. Jan. 23.(Comedy ledgend… launched several comics careers including Jay Leno, and Jerry Seinfeld.)

Philip Johnson, 98. Architect who promoted the “glass box” skyscraper, then smashed the mold with daring postmodernist designs. Jan. 25.

Nick McDonald, 76. Officer who subdued Lee Harvey Oswald after Kennedy assassination. Jan. 27.


Stephen Gregg Sr., 90. Won Medal of Honor for helping rescue seven wounded comrades in World War II. Feb. 4.

Robert Kearns, 77. Inventor of intermittent windshield wipers; won big judgments against automakers. Feb. 9. (Saving us from that irritating squeaky sound… god bless this man.)

Samuel W. Alderson, 90. Invented crash test dummies. Feb. 11.

Uli Derickson, 60. Flight attendant who helped save passengers during the 1985 TWA hijacking. Feb. 18. Cancer. (True bravery)

S. Ernest Vandiver, 86. Georgia governor; won office as segregationist but presided over peaceful desegregation. Feb. 21.

Jef Raskin, 61. Conceived Apple’s Macintosh computer. Feb. 26.


Hans Bethe, 98. Won Nobel for figuring out how stars generate energy. March 6.

George O’Brien Jr., 78. Won Medal of Honor for gallantry in Korea combat. March 11.

John DeLorean, 80. Automotive innovator. March 19.

Johnnie L. Cochran Jr., 67. Became legal superstar during O.J. Simpson trial; “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.” March 29.

Fred Korematsu, 86. Challenged World War II internment of Japanese-Americans. March 30.


Pope John Paul II, 84. Helped topple communism in Europe and left a deeply conservative stamp on the church he led for 26 years. April 2. (The very reason I saw hope in Catholicism…he will be missed.)

Kalman Ferenczfalvi, 84. Hungarian credited with saving 2,000 Jews during Holocaust. April 8.

Archbishop Iakovos, 93. Transformed Greek Orthodox Church in the Americas, championing religious unity, human rights. April 10.

Maurice Hilleman, 85. Microbiologist; helped save millions of lives with vaccines for chickenpox and other maladies. April 11. (So he’s who I blame for all those shots in basic training)

Robert Granville, 89. FBI agent, headed team that arrested Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. April 12.


Kenneth B. Clark, 90. Psychologist who influenced Supreme Court decision banning school segregation. May 1

Jose Lopez, 94. Awarded Medal of Honor for killing more than 100 Germans in skirmish in World War II. May 16.

Thurl Ravenscroft, 91. Voice of Tony the Tiger. May 22. (“They’re grrrrreeeat!”)


Kenneth Taylor, 88. Founded Christian publishing house that created The Living Bible. June 10.

Percy Arrowsmith, 105. He and wife Florence, 100, held world record for longest marriage, 80 years. June 15.

Jack Kilby, 81. Nobel laureate whose 1958 invention of the integrated circuit opened the way for microchips, the brains of computers, electronic gadgets. June 20. (You wouldn’t be reading this today without him.)

Retired Gen. Louis H. Wilson, 85. Medal of Honor winner; Marine Corps commandant. June 21.

John Walton, 58. Billionaire Wal-Mart heir; philanthropist. June 27. Plane crash.


Luther Vandross, 54. Grammy winner with lush voice on such hits as “Here and Now,” the bittersweet “Dance With My Father.” July 1. Stroke.

James Stockdale, 81. Ross Perot’s 1992 running mate; retired vice admiral who received Medal of Honor after enduring 7 1/2 years in a North Vietnamese prison. July 5.

Frances Langford, 92. Actress-singer who captivated soldiers on USO tours during World War II. July 11.

Retired Gen. William Westmoreland, 91. Commanded American troops in Vietnam. July 18.

James Doohan, 85. As “Star Trek” chief engineer, he responded to the command “Beam me up, Scotty.” July 20. (I’m giving her all she’s got Cap’n)

Jack Stephens, 81. Arkansas financier, philanthropist; firm underwrote Wal-Mart’s IPO. July 23.


Saudi Arabia’s King Fahd, 84. He sought to modernize his kingdom while balancing change against orthodox Islam. Aug. 1.

Peter Jennings, 67. Longtime ABC News anchor, part of a triumvirate that dominated network news for two decades. Aug. 7.

Ted “Double Duty” Radcliffe, 103. Negro Leagues star given nickname by Damon Runyon. Aug. 11.

Mo Mowlam, 55. British politician; helped forge Northern Ireland peace accord. Aug. 19.

Robert A. Moog, 71. His synthesizers revolutionized music in the 1960s. Aug. 21. (Without his music… many of us would not be here today. – Think about it.)

Hendrikje van Andel-Schipper, age 115 years, 2 months and 1 day. Dutchwoman listed as world’s oldest person. Aug. 30. (She had a full life)


Bob Denver, 70. Bumbling namesake of “Gilligan’s Island” who delighted generations of TV fans. Sept. 2.

Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, 80. In 33 years on the high court, he oversaw the high court’s conservative shift and presided over President Clinton’s impeachment trial. Sept. 3.

Jack Real, 90. Aviation pioneer who helped develop the Apache helicopter. Sept. 6. (Still the most dominant attack helicopter in the world.)

Robert Wise, 91. Won four Oscars as producer and director of “West Side Story,” “The Sound of Music.” Sept. 14.

Gordon Gould, 85. He coined the word “laser,” won legal battle to secure patent rights. Sept. 16. (“LASER”…)

Don Adams, 82. The fumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart in TV’s Bond spoof “Get Smart.” Sept. 25.


Nipsey Russell, 80. Witty actor-comedian who was a staple of TV game shows; Tin Man in “The Wiz.” Oct. 2. (My first comedy record…well I stole it from my mother, but you get the idea)

Vivian Malone Jones, 63. One of two blacks whose enrollment at the University of Alabama led to George Wallace’s infamous “stand in the schoolhouse door.” Oct. 13.

Elmer “Len” Dresslar Jr., 80. The booming voice of the Jolly Green Giant. Oct. 16.

Alexander Yakovlev, 81. He helped spearhead former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev’s political reforms. Oct. 18.

Rosa Parks, 92. Her refusal to give up her bus seat to a white man sparked the modern civil rights movement. Oct. 24. (An uncommonly brave woman…She proved that one person can make a difference.)

Richard Smalley, 62. Nobel winner who helped discover unusual molecules called buckyballs; championed nanotechnology. Oct. 28. (Pioneer for our future)

Al Lopez, 97. Hall of Fame catcher; managed pennant-winning teams in 1954 (Indians) and 1959 (White Sox). Oct. 30.


Robert Eugene Bush, 79. Received Medal of Honor while in his teens for bravery at Okinawa. Nov. 8.

Peter F. Drucker, 95. His books stressing innovation, entrepreneurship deeply influenced world of business. Nov. 11.

Vine Deloria Jr., 72. Author, advocate of Indian rights (“Custer Died for Your Sins”). Nov. 13.

Alfred Anderson, 109. British World War I veteran; last survivor to have witnessed the spontaneous “Christmas Truce” of 1914. Nov. 21.

Dr. Thomas Royle Dawber, 92. Directed Framingham Heart Study that transformed the understanding of heart disease. Nov. 23.


Frederick Ashworth, 93. Weaponeer aboard the B-29 that dropped atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945. Dec. 3.

Richard Pryor, 65. Actor-comedian whose profanely personal insights into race relations made him one of Hollywood’s biggest stars. Dec. 10. (My first exposure to “Blue” comedy)

William Proxmire, 90: Wisconsin senator who made his mark in Congress by taking on government waste with his mocking “Golden Fleece” awards. Dec. 15.

Jack Anderson, 83: Pulitzer Prize-winning muckraking columnist who struck fear into the hearts of corrupt or secretive politicians. Dec. 17.

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