Shock G, off-kilter Digital Underground leader, dead at 57
LOS ANGELES | Shock G, who blended whimsical wordplay with reverence for ‘70s funk as leader of the off-kilter Bay Area hip-hop group Digital Underground, has died. He was 57.
Nzazi Malonga, a longtime friend who served as head of security and helped manage the group, said the rapper-producer was found unresponsive Thursday in a hotel room in Tampa, Florida. Malonga said the performer, born Greg Jacobs, had struggled with drug addiction for years.
The group found fame with the Billboard Top 10 hit “Humpty Dance” in 1990, as Jacobs donned a Groucho Marx-style fake nose and glasses to become one of his many alter egos, Humpty Hump. He initially maintained the flamboyant Humpty was a separate person, doing in-character interviews and sometimes having his brother Kent Racker play the part.
Chiefs great Arbanas, longtime local politician, dies at 82
KANSAS CITY, Mo. | Kansas City Chiefs tight end Fred Arbanas, a key member of their first two Super Bowl teams in the 1960s’ and ‘70s who later had a long career in county politics, has died. He was 82.
The Jackson County Democratic Party in Missouri, for which Arbanas was a major player for more than four decades, announced his death in a brief statement Saturday. No cause was given.
leaguer Adrian Garrett dies at age 78
Adrian Garrett, who spent eight seasons in the major leagues and then went on to a coaching career, has died. He was 78.
Garrett died Thursday of pneumonia at Ascension Seton Hays Hospital in Kyle, Texas, New York Mets spokesman Jay Horwitz said Friday. Adrian Garrett’s younger brother, Wayne, was the third baseman on the 1969 World Series champion Mets.
German-Australian author Walter Kaufmann dies at 97
BERLIN | German-Australian author Walter Kaufmann, who survived the Nazi persecution of Jews and later played a prominent role in the literary scene of Communist East Germany, has died at the age of 97.
Kaufmann’s death was confirmed to The Associated Press on Friday by Dirk Szuszies, a Berlin filmmaker who made a documentary about the author’s life.
Szuszies, the documentary-maker, said Kaufmann died peacefully in Berlin on Thursday. He is survived by his third wife, Lissy Kreuter, and two daughters from a previous marriage — photographer Rebekka and actress Deborah Kaufmann.
Vartan Gregorian, longtime president of Carnegie Corp., dies
NEW YORK | Vartan Gregorian, the noted scholar and philanthropic leader who led the Carnegie Corporation of New York since 1997, died Thursday after being hospitalized for stomach pain. He was 87.
“America invested in me and saw me as a citizen,” Gregorian wrote in 2018 to commemorate July 4 for the Carnegie Corporation. “It is a debt that I can never fully repay, though I have tried.”
Gregorian is survived by his sons Vahé Gregorian and his wife Cindy Billhartz Gregorian of Kansas City, Missouri; Raffi Gregorian of New York; and Dareh Gregorian and his wife Maggie Haberman Gregorian of Brooklyn, New York. He is also survived by five grandchildren—Juan, Maximus, Sophie, Miri, and Dashiell — and a sister, Ojik Arakelian, of Massachusetts and Iran.
Clare Russell Gregorian, his wife of 58 years, died in 2018 after a lengthy struggle with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Former Democratic Tennessee lawmaker Roscoe Dixon dies
MEMPHIS, Tenn. | Roscoe Dixon, a former Democratic state lawmaker in Tennessee who worked for civil rights groups and served in the Legislature for 25 years before becoming embroiled in the “Tennessee Waltz” corruption scandal, has died, a friend said. He was 71.
Ruby Wharton, a Memphis attorney and longtime friend, told The Associated Press that she was informed by Dixon’s sister that he died on Thursday. Wharton is the wife of former Memphis Mayor A C Wharton, who also was friends with Dixon.
Veteran AP producer, cameraman in Iraq dies of COVID-19
BEIRUT | Khodeir Majid, who covered Iraq’s numerous conflicts as a video producer and cameraman for The Associated Press for over 17 years, has died, relatives said Friday. He was 64.
The cause of death was complications due to the coronavirus. Majid had been hospitalized for about three weeks, but his condition rapidly deteriorated in the last few days and he died Friday morning.
Majid was buried in Iraq’s Shiite holy city of Najaf Friday. He is survived by his wife and five children.
Star British choreographer Liam Scarlett dies at 35
LONDON | Liam Scarlett, a star British choreographer whose career was clouded by abuse allegations, has died. He was 35.
Scarlett trained at the Royal Ballet School in London and danced with the company before concentrating on choreography.
He worked around the world, with companies including the New York City Ballet, the Norwegian National Ballet, the Miami City Ballet and Queensland Ballet in Australia.
Felix Silla, Cousin Itt on TV’s ‘Addams Family,’ dies at 84
LOS ANGELES | Felix Silla, who starred as the hairy Cousin Itt on “The Addams Family” and a robot on “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century,” has died. The actor died Friday after a battle with cancer, he was 84.
Silla’s face went unseen in a couple other roles, including his portrayal of the robot Twiki on the late 1970s NBC series “Buck Rogers,” and the 1983 film “Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi,” where he played an Ewok who rode a hang glider.
Silla is survived by his wife Sue and daughter Bonnie. His son, Michael, died at the age of 45 last year.
Founder of Adobe
and developer of
PDFs dies at age 81
LOS ALTOS, Calif. | Charles “Chuck” Geschke — the co-founder of the major software company Adobe Inc. who helped develop Portable Document Format technology, or PDFs — died at age 81.
After earning a doctorate from Carnegie Mellon University, Geschke began working at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, where he met Warnock, the Mercury News reported. The men left the company in 1982 to found Adobe, developing software together.
In 2009, President Barack Obama awarded Geschke and Warnock the National Medal of Technology.
Alma Wahlberg, mother of Mark, Donnie Wahlberg, dies at 78
Alma Wahlberg, the mother of entertainers Mark and Donnie Wahlberg and a regular on their reality series “Wahlburgers,” has died, her sons said on social media Sunday. She was 78.
No information was given about the cause, date or location of her death.
The Boston-born mother of nine became a household name thanks to her appearances on the A&E series “Wahlburgers,” about the family’s burgeoning burger chain.
Alma Wahlberg is survived by eight children. Her daughter Debbie died in 2003.
Hester Ford, oldest living American, dies at 115 ... or 116?
CHARLOTTE, N.C. | A North Carolina woman who grew up picking cotton, got married at 14 and went on to become the oldest living American with more than 120 great-great-grandchildren has died peacefully in her home, according to her family.
Hester Ford was either 115 or 116 years old depending on which census report was accurate. Either way, she was the oldest living American when she died Saturday in Charlotte, according to the Gerontology Research Group, which tracks “supercentenarians.” They listed her age as 115 years and 245 days
Her 12 children gave her 68 grandchildren, 125 great-grandchildren, and at least 120 great-great-grandchildren.
High-ranking Iranian general dies of heart disease at 65
TEHRAN, Iran | A high-ranking general key to Iran’s security apparatus has died, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps announced on Sunday.
Brig. Gen. Mohammad Hosseinzadeh Hejazi, who died at 65, served as deputy commander of the Quds, or Jerusalem, force of Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard. The unit is an elite and influential group that oversees foreign operations, and Hejazi helped lead its expeditionary forces and frequently shuttled between Iraq, Lebanon and Syria.
The Guard statement said he died of heart disease, without providing any further details.
Veteran Syria opposition figure Michel Kilo dies of COVID-19
PARIS | Michel Kilo, an exiled veteran Syrian opposition figure, died Monday of complications from COVID-19 in a hospital in Paris where he lived, family and friends said. He was 81.
Kilo spent time in prison during the rule of late Syrian President Hafez Assad in the early 1980s and more recently from 2006-2009 under his son, current President Bashar Assad.
Kilo’s daughter Shada said he died Monday in a Paris hospital. She said he had been in stable condition but then relapsed and had to be intubated.
Kilo, a Christian, is survived by his wife, Wadia, his daughter Shadia and two sons. All of them live in France.
Rapper Black Rob, known for hit ‘Whoa!,’ dead at 52
NEW YORK | Rapper Black Rob, known for his hit “Whoa!” and key contributions to Diddy’s dominant Bad Boy Records in the 1990s and early 2000s, has died. He was 52.
Black Rob died Saturday in Atlanta, according to longtime friend and former labelmate Mark Curry, who said he was holding the hip-hop performer’s hand at the end. He’d been hospitalized and suffered multiple health problems in recent years, and died of cardiac arrest, Curry said.
His debut album “Life Story,” released in 2000, peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard charts and went platinum, led by the infectious single “Whoa!”
Walter Mondale, Carter’s vice president, dies at 93
MINNEAPOLIS | Former Vice President Walter F. Mondale, a liberal icon who lost one of the most lopsided presidential elections after bluntly telling voters to expect a tax increase if he won, died Monday. He was 93.
The death of the former senator, ambassador and Minnesota attorney general was announced in a statement from his family. No cause was cited.
Mondale followed the trail blazed by his political mentor, Hubert H. Humphrey, from Minnesota politics to the U.S. Senate and the vice presidency, serving under Jimmy Carter from 1977 to 1981.
First female president of Massachusetts medical society dies
BOSTON | The first female president of the Massachusetts Medical Society has died at 89.
The Boston Globe reports that Dr. Barbara Rockett died last week. The Brookline resident was making house calls and serving on a number of boards into her 80s, but her health had declined in recent years.
Rockett served as president of the Massachusetts Medical Society in the 1980s and help lead a successful campaign to curb the rising cost of malpractice insurance in the state, according to the paper.
Former Oregon U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Furse dies at age 84
PORTLAND, Ore. | Elizabeth Furse, who represented northwestern Oregon in Congress for three terms in the 1990s, has died from complications related to a fall, her former husband said. She was 84.
The Oregonian/OregonLive reported that Furse championed the rights of Native Americans and helped five Oregon tribes regain federal recognition. She also worked to advance the rights of women, children and farm workers and advocated for peace and nuclear disarmament and environmental regulation and land use rules.
Furse is survived by her children, Amanda Briggs of Beaverton and John Briggs of Seattle, and by Platt, who was her second husband.
Jim Steinman, hitmaker for Meat Loaf and Celine Dion, dies
NEW YORK | Jim Steinman, the Grammy-winning composer who wrote Meat Loaf’s best-selling “Bat Out Of Hell” debut album as well as hits for Celine Dion, Air Supply and Bonnie Tyler, has died. He was 73.
Bill Steinman told The Associated Press that his brother died Monday from kidney failure and was ill for some time. He said Jim Steinman died in Connecticut near his home in Ridgefield.
Steinman’s only album was 1981’s “Bad for Good,” which featured “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through,” a Top 40 hit that Meat Loaf later recorded with more success on the charts. “Bad for Good” also included the track “Left In the Dark,” which Barbra Streisand recorded for her 1984 “Emotion” album. Meat Loaf also recorded the song.
Chad President Deby, ally in fighting extremism, dies at 68
N’DJAMENA, Chad | President Idriss Deby Itno, who ruled Chad for more than 30 years and became an important ally to Western nations in the fight against Islamic extremism in Africa, has been killed while battling against rebels in the north, according to the military. He was 68.
The announcement Tuesday came hours after Deby had been declared the winner of an election that would have given him another six years in power. The circumstances of his death remained murky, and the military quickly announced that his 37-year-old son, Mahamat, who is best known as a top commander of the Chadian forces aiding a U.N. peacekeeping mission in northern Mali, will now head an 18-month transitional council.
Former big league player, coach Tom Robson dead at age 75
CHANDLER, Ariz. | Former major league player and coach Tom Robson has died. He was 75.
Robson died of natural causes on Tuesday at Memory Care Facility in Chandler, Arizona, New York Mets spokesman Jay Horwitz said Wednesday.
Robson is survived by wife Jeannette, sons Adam and David, three grandchildren and nephew Mike Moustakas, a Cincinnati Reds third baseman.
Tempest Storm, legendary burlesque star, dies at Vegas home
LAS VEGAS | Tempest Storm, the legendary burlesque star who blazed a trail for strip-tease artists for more than a half-century, has died. She was 93.
Storm had been struggling after hip surgery April 8 and had been medicated to offset chronic pain after the operation, the second on her right hip, and was receiving around-the-clock care up until her death.
She had also suffered from dementia in recent months.
Les McKeown, who fronted the Bay City Rollers, dies at 65
LONDON | Les McKeown, the former lead singer of the 1970s Scottish pop sensation Bay City Rollers, died suddenly at the age of 65, his family said Thursday.
Formed at the end of the 1960s, the Bay City Rollers enjoyed huge success in Britain and abroad with their tartan outfits and pop tunes like “Bye Bye Baby,” “Shang-a-Lang” and “Give a Little Love.” They had a fanatical teen following and sold more than 100 million records. Some in the British media called them the “biggest group since the Beatles”.
The band split up in 1978 and reunited in 2015 for a string of sold-out performances.
Thelma Harper, Tenn. legislator, dies
NASHVILLE, Tenn. | Former Tennessee Sen. Thelma Harper, who became the first African-American woman elected to the state Senate, died Thursday. She was 80.
Harper, who became a senator in 1989 and was first elected to her seat in 1991, became the longest-serving female senator in Tennessee before she decided not to seek reelection in 2018.
Pulitzer-winning composer Wayne Peterson dies at 93
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Composer, pianist and educator Wayne Peterson, who won a Pulitzer Prize for music that was hotly contested because judges had chosen another composer, has died. He was 93.
Peterson died on April 7 at his San Francisco home, his son Grant Peterson told the San Francisco Chronicle.
Before Harper became a senator, The Tennessee State University graduate was a member of Nashville’s Metro Council.
—From AP reports