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POST 0001/17


To the uninitiated it would appear that a record number of celebrities died in 2016. Not so says the Obituaries Editor of the Daily Telegraph on 31st December 2016. 1977 and 1997 were far worse.  Here are a list of 75 of the celebrities who died in 2016, but there were lots more:

January 2016      

4              Robert Stigwood, 81, Australian band manager (Bee Gees, Cream) and film producer (Grease, Saturday Night Fever, Evita).

5              Tancrède Melet, 32, French tightrope walker and base jumper, fall.

7              Troy Shondell, 76, American singer, complications from Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.

9              Ed Stewart, 74, British TV and radio broadcaster (Top of the Pops, Crackerjack), stroke.

10           David Bowie, 69, English singer-songwriter, musician ("Space Oddity", "Heroes", "Starman"), and actor (Labyrinth, Zoolander), liver cancer.

13           Tera Wray, 33, American Singer/actress, suicide.

14           Alan Rickman, 69, English actor (Harry Potter, Die Hard, Love Actually), pancreatic cancer.

18           Glenn Frey, 67, American songwriter, musician (Eagles) and actor (Jerry Maguire), complications following intestinal surgery.

30           Frank Finlay, 89, English actor (Othello, The Pianist, Bouquet of Barbed Wire), heart failure.

31           Sir Terry Wogan, 77, Irish-British broadcaster (BBC), cancer


February 2016    

8              Margaret Forster, 77, English novelist (Georgy Girl) and biographer, cancer. Married to Hunter Davies

19           Harper Lee, 89, American author (To Kill a Mockingbird).

22           Sonny James, 87, American country singer-songwriter ("Young Love").

28           Frank Kelly, 77, Irish actor (Father Ted, Emmerdale, Evelyn), heart attack.


March 2016         

1              Tony Warren, 79, English television screenwriter and producer (Creator of Coronation Street).

6              Nancy Reagan, 96, actress and former first lady of the United States,

8              Sir George Martin, 90, British Hall of Fame record producer (The Beatles), composer, arranger and engineer, six-time Grammy Award winner.

9              Robert Horton, 91, American actor (Wagon Train).

11           Keith Emerson, 71, English progressive rock and rock keyboardist (The Nice; Emerson, Lake & Palmer), suicide by gunshot.

15           Sylvia Anderson, 88, British television producer and voice actress, voice of Lady Penelope in the 1960s  puppet series Thunderbirds - which she produced with her husband Gerry

16           Frank Sinatra, Jr., 72, American singer (That Face!) and actor (Hollywood Homicide), heart attack.

17           Paul Daniels, 77, British magician (The Paul Daniels Magic Show), brain tumour.

17           Cliff Michelmore, 96, British television presenter and producer.

18           Barry Hines, 76, English author (A Kestrel for a Knave), Alzheimer's disease.

18           Ned Miller, 90, American country singer-songwriter.

31           Ronnie Corbett, 85, British comedian and actor (The Two Ronnies, The Frost Report, Casino Royale).


April 2016            

6              Merle Haggard, 79, American singer-songwriter ("Okie from Muskogee", "The Fightin' Side of Me", "Carolyn"), Grammy winner (1984, 1998, 1999), complications from pneumonia.

11           Emile Ford, 78, Saint Lucian singer ("What Do You Want to Make Those Eyes at Me For?") and sound engineer.

12           David Gest, 62, American TV producer (Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Special) and reality show contestant (I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!).

20           Victoria Wood, 62, British comedian and actress (New Faces, Victoria Wood As Seen on TV, Dinnerladies), cancer.

21           Prince, 57, American musician, songwriter ("Purple Rain", "Little Red Corvette") and actor, Oscar (1984) and Grammy (1984, 1986, 2004, 2007) winner, accidental overdose of fentanyl.


May 2016            

4              Rita Renoir, 82, French strip-teaser and actress.

28           Harambe, 17, American-bred Western lowland gorilla, shot.

31           Carla Lane, 87, English television writer (The Liver Birds, Butterflies, Bread).


June 2016            

3              Muhammad Ali, 74, American boxer, Olympic gold medalist (1960), three-time WBC world heavyweight champion (1964, 1974, 1978), septic shock.

16           Jo Cox, 41, British politician, MP for Batley and Spen (since 2015), shot and stabbed.

16           Harry Rabinowitz, 100, British music composer (Reilly, Ace of Spies) and conductor (Chariots of Fire, Cats).


July 2016             

2              Caroline Aherne, 52, English comedian, actress and writer (The Royle Family, The Mrs Merton Show, The Fast Show), throat cancer.

9              Gladys Hooper, 113, English supercentenarian, nation's oldest living person.

22           Shawshank tree, c. 180, North American white oak featured in The Shawshank Redemption.

26           Sylvia Peters, 90, British continuity announcer and actress (BBC TV). BBC television announcer for the Queen's 1953 coronation, and also helped Her Majesty prepare for her first Christmas broadcast


August 2016        

7              Ruby Winters, 74, American soul singer ("Make Love to Me", "I Will").

23           Pete Burns, 57, English singer-songwriter (Dead or Alive), cardiac arrest.

13           Kenny Baker, 81, British actor (Star Wars, Time Bandits, Flash Gordon).

20           Brian Rix, Baron Rix, 92, British actor (And the Same to You) and activist (Mencap).

20           Gene Wilder, 83, American actor (The Producers, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Young Frankenstein), screenwriter and author, complications of Alzheimer's disease.


September 2016 

21           John D. Loudermilk, 82, American singer and songwriter ("Tobacco Road", "Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye", "Indian Reservation"), bone cancer.


October 2016      

14           Jean Alexander, 90, English actress (Coronation Street, Last of the Summer Wine)

16           Jia Jia, 38, Chinese giant panda, euthanized.

16           Valerie Hunter Gordon, 94, mother of six & British inventor of disposable nappies.

21           Dave Cash, 74, British radio presenter.

23           Jimmy Perry, 93, English actor and screenwriter (Dad's Army, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, Hi-de-Hi!).

24           Bobby Vee, 73, American pop singer ("Rubber Ball", "Take Good Care of My Baby", "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes") and actor, Alzheimer's disease.


November 2016  

2              Oleg Popov, 86, Russian clown (Moscow State Circus), heart attack.

7              Leonard Cohen, 82, Canadian singer-songwriter ("Hallelujah", "Suzanne", "First We Take Manhattan"), poet and novelist (Beautiful Losers), complications from a fall.[

7              Sir Jimmy Young, 95, British radio personality (Radio 2) and singer ("Unchained Melody", "The Man from Laramie").

11           Robert Vaughn, 83, American actor (The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Magnificent Seven, Hustle), acute leukemia.

13           Leon Russell, 74, American Hall of Fame musician (The Wrecking Crew) and songwriter ("Tight Rope").

23           Andrew Sachs, 86, German-born British actor (Fawlty Towers, Coronation Street, Hitler: The Last Ten Days), dementia

25           Fidel Castro, 90, Cuban politician, Prime Minister (1959–1976), President (1976–2008).

25           David Hamilton, 83, British photographer.

28           Jim Delligatti, 98, American entrepreneur, creator of the McDonald's Big Mac burger which was introduced in 1967 with two lots of everything - "all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a sesame seed bun"


December 2016  

6              Peter Vaughan, 93, British actor (Game of Thrones, Brazil, Porridge , Our Friends in the North).

7              Greg Lake, 69, English singer and musician (King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer), cancer.

8              John Glenn, 95, American astronaut (Mercury-Atlas 6) and politician, U.S. Senator from Ohio (1974–1999).

10           Ian McCaskill, 78, British meteorologist and weatherman.

11           Michael Nicholson, 79, British journalist and war correspondent.

18           Zsa Zsa Gabor, 99, Hungarian-born American actress (Moulin Rouge, Touch of Evil, Lili) and socialite, heart attack.

19           Lionel Blue, 86, British rabbi, journalist and broadcaster, complications from Parkinson's disease.

24           Liz Smith, 95, English actress (The Royle Family, I Didn't Know You Cared, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory).

24           Rick Parfitt, 68, British singer, songwriter and guitarist (Status Quo), infection.

24           Richard Adams, 96, British author (Watership Down, The Plague Dogs, Shardik).

25           George Michael, 53, British singer (Wham!) and song

27           Carrie Fisher, 60, American actress (Star Wars, When Harry Met Sally...), novelist and screenwriter (Postcards from the Edge), complications from a heart attack.

28           Debbie Reynolds, 84, American actress, dancer (Singin' in the Rain, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, Irene) and singer ("Tammy"), stroke.

When I was a lad at school around 13 years old, our Maths teacher used to call me Wol. At the end of the year as we were moving up a class I plucked up courage to ask why he called me Wol. He told meit was thename of the deslexic owl in Winnie the Pooh. With my Harry Potter glasses he said I looked like the Wise Old Owl in the Winnie the Pooh stories.


Being the vain person I am I took it as a compliment

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