From Doris Day to Luke Perry: Remembering the Stars We've Lost in 2019
Conway died on May 14 at the age of 85.
He passed away at 8:45 a.m. in the Los Angeles area, his rep Howard Bragman confirmed to PEOPLE.
Prior to his death, he suffered complications from Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (NPH) and had no signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s.
Conway is survived by his wife of 35 years, his stepdaughter, his six biological children and two granddaughters.
The beloved actor is best known for his work on The Carol Burnett Show, winning viewers over with characters like the Oldest Man and Mr. Tudball, whose accent he has said was inspired by his Romanian mother.
Day, the beautiful blonde whose sunny screen presence and silken singing voice guaranteed box-office and record-chart hits in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s, died on May 13, her rep confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 97.
Day died at 1:00 a.m. at her home in California, the rep said.
The Associated Press was first to report the news, which came nearly two months after the actress celebrated her birthday and shared a recent photo with PEOPLE.
Lipton, known for her roles on The Mod Squad and Twin Peaks died on May 11. She was 72.
In a statement to the Los Angeles Times that was later obtained by PEOPLE, Lipton’s daughters from her marriage to music producer Quincy Jones, confirmed that she had passed away from cancer.
“She made her journey peacefully with her daughters and nieces by her side,” Kidada Jones and Parks and Recreation actress Rashida Jones said. “We feel so lucky for every moment we spent with her.”
“We can’t put all of our feelings into words right now, but we will say: Peggy was and will always be our beacon of light, both in this world and beyond,” the pair added. “She will always be a part of us.”
Professional wrestler and actor King died after collapsing from a heart attack during his performance in London on May 11, The Guardian reported.
The former WCW star, 51, whose real name is César Barrón, was performing at the Roundhouse Theatre in Camden for the Greatest Show of Lucha Libre event alongside Juventud Guerrera, also known as Youth Warrior. Guerrera reportedly kicked Barrón who fell to the ground, and then proceeded to “pin” him down.
Guerrera signaled in confusion at the referee when Barrón did not recover from the move, according to The Guardian. That’s when a team of medics rushed to the ring and audience members were asked to leave. The London ambulance service was called but they were unable to resuscitate Barrón.
Magasiva, who starred in several Power Rangers television series as well as New Zealand soap opera Shortland Street, died in early May. He was 38.
The New Zealand Herald reported that police were called to a home in Wellington, New Zealand, where they found the actor unresponsive.
A police spokesperson told the outlet that they found “no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death,” and would be referring the case to the coroner.
Magasiva is survived by wife Lizz Sadler, a 7-year-old daughter from his previous marriage, and his brother Robbie. Sadler also has a daughter from a previous relationship.
The star of DIY Network’s Nashville Flipped died on April 28 at the age of 38, PEOPLE confirmed.
Shafer appeared on the TV series beginning in 2016. His cause of death is not yet available, but a toxicology report is expected in the next few weeks.
A representative for the network told PEOPLE in a statement, “The DIY Network family is sorry to hear about the passing of Troy Dean Shafer, a dedicated, driven entrepreneur and restoration expert who was admired by everyone who worked on the series Nashville Flipped. We continue to extend our deepest condolences to Troy’s family and friends during this difficult time.”
Azria, founder of the iconic American fashion brand BCBGMAXAZRIA, died on May 6 in a Houston hospital, WWD reported. He was 70.
According to the outlet, the legendary Tunisian-born designer died of lung cancer.
Azria, who moved to the United States in 1981 after designing women’s clothing in Paris for 11 years, launched BCBGMAXAZRIA in 1989. His brand was a staple among runways and celebrities, such as Kim Kardashian, Drew Barrymore and Selena Gomez.
During its height, his company had 500 stores worldwide, and many of his designs were carried across major department stores as well.
Held Evans, a popular Christian author whose work rejected traditional conservative beliefs, died in early May after a lengthy hospitalization. She was 37.
In a statement shared on his wife’s website, her husband Dan shared that she died after being “slowly weaned from” her medically induced coma and experiencing massive brain swelling, which “ultimately was not survivable.”
“This entire experience is surreal. I keep hoping it’s a nightmare from which I’ll awake. I feel like I’m telling someone else’s story,” he wrote, before thanking his wife’s friends, family and fans for their prayers and support.
Brazilian model Bittencourt died in São Paulo at the end of April after she drowned in an attempt to rescue her dogs who fell out of the sailboat she was on with her husband, Jorge Sestini. She was 37.
According to TMZ, the devastating accident happened after a storm hit the couple’s boat and left their catamaran in rough waters, causing their two dogs to fall out. Bittencourt jumped in the water after her pets. Directly after, Sestini dove in to save his wife.
Sestini is set to be charged with manslaughter in connection to his wife’s death, for ignoring warnings about the rough weather that day.
Singleton, the first African-American man to be nominated for a Best Directing Oscar, died on April 29. He was 51.
His family announced that day they were taking the director off of life support 13 days after he suffered a stroke.
“It is with heavy hearts we announce that our beloved son, father and friend, John Daniel Singleton will be taken off of life support today. This was an agonizing decision, one that our family made, over a number of days, with the careful counsel of John’s doctors,” the statement began.
Singleton suffered a “major stroke” after arriving back in the U.S. from a trip to Costa Rica. His mother, Shelia Ward, filed an application to establish a temporary conservatorship for his estate in April.
Sherk, a Canadian model and actress married to Oscar nominee Demián Bichir, died on April 20. She was 43.
Her death was ruled a suicide by drowning, the L.A. County Medical Examiner-Coroner confirmed to PEOPLE.
Her husband shared the sad news in an emotional post on Instagram. “It has been the saddest and toughest time of our lives and we don’t know how much time it will take for us to overcome this pain,” Bichir wrote. “Stefanie’s beautiful, angelical and talented presence will be immensely missed. We will hold Stefanie in our hearts forever.”
Sherk had a number of acting credits to her name, including a role in Bichir’s directorial debut, Un Cuento de Circo & A Love Song in 2016. She’s also had roles in Valentine’s Day, Star Power, Loco Love, as well as the upcoming horror movie Grudge.
The eight-time NBA champion and Basketball Hall of Famer died on April 25. He was 79.
Havlicek’s death was confirmed in a statement by the Boston Celtics, the team he played with for 16 seasons.
“John Havlicek is one of the most accomplished players in Boston Celtics history … He was a great champion both on the court and in the community,” the statement began.
Havlicek remains the Celtics’ highest scoring member with 26,395 points across his career. He was also a 13-time NBA All-Star, and upon his retirement in 1978, the Celtics immediately retired his number 17 jersey with him.
While the NBA legend had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease, the statement did not confirm his exact cause of death.
Jenkins, best known for his roles in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Fletch, died suddenly on April 25 in Los Angeles after suffering a heart attack, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The actor first broke onto the small screen in 1978 playing the role of Lester in TV movie Crisis in the Valley. He appeared on several television shows before transitioning to film and landing the role of the attendant’s co-pilot in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, where he famously took Cameron’s (Alan Ruck) father’s Ferrari for a joyride.
Most recently, Jenkins was working on two films called The Gospel Truth and Anna Lucasta, both of which he wrote, directed, produced and starred in. He was also at the helm of two production companies: Flashworks Productions and Gold Coast Productions.
Golin, the Oscar-winning producer whose company Anonymous Content is behind hits like Spotlight and Mr. Robot, died on April 21 in Los Angeles of cancer. He was 64.
Golin’s producing résumé included dozens of popular movies and TV shows, and in 2016, he took home an Oscar for producing Spotlight. He was nominated that same year for The Revenant, and in 2006, earned a nod for Babel.
The New York native launched his first production company, Propaganda Films, with Joni Sighvatsson in 1986, which went on to help launch the careers of stars like Spike Jonze, David Fincher and Michael Bay, according to The Hollywood Reporter. He left the company in the late ’90s and launched Anonymous Content in 1999.
He is survived by his two children, according to Deadline.
Kercheval, the actor best known for his longtime role as Texas businessman Cliff Barnes on the CBS soap opera Dallas, died on April 21. He was 83.
At this time, a cause of death for the actor remains unclear.
Kercheval’s passion for acting began in 1954 and saw him starring in several productions before he transitioned to screen, becoming a staple of the television and film world beginning in 1962.
On the small screen, the Indiana native made appearances on The Secret Storm, Kojak, CHiPs, Starsky & Hutch, The Love Boat, Matlock, Highway to Heaven, before landing the role of Barnes, the brother of Victoria Principal’s character Pamela Ewing on the CBS soap opera in 1978.
The British child star, best known for her roles on BBC network shows Absolutely Fabulous and Millie Inbetween, died on April 7, the network confirmed. She was 16.
“Mya-Lecia was a much loved part of the BBC Children’s family, and a hugely talented actress, singer and dancer. We will miss her enormously and we are sure that you will want to join us in sending all our love to her family and friends,” the network said of the aspiring model and singer in a statement.
According to BBC News, Naylor’s agents, A&J Management, said the young actress died April 7 after she collapsed.
The T2 Trainspotting star and former boxer died following a shooting near his home in Edinburgh, Scotland, on April 17. He was 42.
Welsh appeared as the kingpin Doyle in Danny Boyle’s 2017 sequel to his classic 1996 film Trainspotting. It was his first professional acting role. He also ran charity projects for young adults in the city to help them stay fit and out of trouble through his Holyrood Boxing Gym, according to Edinburgh Live.
“His death is being treated as suspicious and inquiries are continuing,” the Edinburgh Police Divison shared in a statement on Facebook.
The Canadian professional skier died on April 15 following an accident while skiing in Pemberton, British Colombia in Canada, Pique Newsmagazine reported. He was 34.
According to Pique, Treadway was skiing with a group in the backcountry when a snow bridge collapsed under him, plunging him nearly 100 feet into a crevasse near Rhododendron Mountain. Pemberton District Search and Rescue (PSAR) responded to the incident, but unfortunately Treadway died at the scene, according to the outlet.
He is survived by his pregnant wife, Tessa, and their two sons, Kasper, 6, and Raffi, 2.
Andersson, the famed Swedish actress and muse to Ingmar Bergman, died on April 14 in Stockholm. She was 83.
Her spokesperson Martin Frostberg confirmed her death, according to the Associated Press. Andersson was hospitalized in France after suffering a stroke in 2009.
Andersson’s two-decade-long film career started in her teens and saw her in more than 50 films, including 13 by the legendary Bergman. Most notably, she starred in his 1966 psychological drama Persona as Alma, which earned her worldwide critical acclaim and a best actress award at the 4th Guldbagge Awards (the Swedish equivalent of the Academy Awards).
“Her achievements in Swedish cinema cannot be overrated,” the Swedish Film Institute’s CEO, Anna Serner, said in a statement obtained by the AP.
Irawan, a Malaysian professional golfer, died in his China hotel room on April 14, according to PGATour.com. He was 28.
His death appears to be from natural causes, but a coroner’s report has yet to be completed, the site reported.
Irawan was in Sanya to compete in the PGA Tour Series-China’s Sanya Championship. According to the site, the golfer made his debut on the PGA Tour Series-China in 2016, after playing for the University of Tulsa golf team in the U.S. and turning pro in 2013.
He is survived by his wife, Marina, and his parents and sister.
The Mary Tyler Moore Show star died on April 12, her talent agent Jackie Stander confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 70.
The actress, widely recognized for her high-pitched and sweet-sounding voice, began her decades-long acting career with a role in Hello, Dolly! on Broadway in 1969 before gracing the small screen in a number of roles.
“Georgia was one of a kind and the absolute best,” Betty White, who starred alongside Engel in The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Betty White Show and Hot in Cleveland, told the New York Times following Engel’s death.
Most recently, Engel had guest roles in The Office (2012) and Two and a Half Men (2012) and appeared as Mamie in Hot in Cleveland (2012-15).
The country community was in mourning in early April after singer Conley died. He was 77.
Earl, best known for his ’80’s hits “Holding Her and Loving You,” “What I’d Say” and “Once In a Blue Moon,” died in Nashville on April 10, Blake Shelton confirmed.
Shelton paid tribute to Earl, whom he referred to as his “favorite singer, hero, and friend”, in a touching post on social media. The pair had been friends for years and collaborated in 2002 to co-write Shelton’s Top 20 hit “All Over Me” along with Michael Pyle.
“My heart is absolutely destroyed today… I’m sad to report that Earl Thomas Conley passed away very early this morning,” Shelton wrote on his social media accounts Wednesday, along with a photo of the pals smiling during a performance. “Earl was my all time favorite singer, hero and my friend. Prayers to his family. We will all miss you deeply my brother. Now go rest…”
The rapper died in a shooting on March 31, according to multiple reports. He was 33.
The “Hussle & Motivate” musician (né Ermias Asghedom) died after being shot on the street where his clothing store, the Marathon Clothing Company, is located in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, NBC News, the Los Angeles Times and TMZ reported, citing multiple law enforcement sources.
The rapper’s debut album, Victory Lap, was nominated for best rap album at the Grammy Awards in February. He is survived by his two children: daughter Emani from a previous relationship and son Kross, 2, with his girlfriend, actress Lauren London, 34.
The British actress and model died on March 31, the official James Bond Twitter handle announced. She was 77.
Mallet — whom her cousin Helen Mirren, 73, once described as “impossibly beautiful and kind” — rose to fame as a model in the 1950s and ’60s and is best known for her turn as Bond girl Tilly Masterson in 1964’s Goldfinger.
Clayton — the 22-year-old rising pop singer who was a protégé of Charli XCX — died on March 26 in his home from an aggressive form of bone cancer known as Ewing’s sarcoma.
The sad news was reported by Billy’s mother Becky Clayton, who wrote a touching tribute to her son on social media calling him “one of the most genuinely talented and special people ever.”
“He held on for so long and had more strength than anyone could ever imagine. But his body would no longer allow him to live the life he so desperately wished for and his soul needed to escape to be free,” Becky said. “Our hearts are broken into a million pieces and I have no idea how I will manage. But I know he is with me and with all the people who loved him. I was honored to be Billy’s mum and will be forever and ever and again, next time around.”
Varda, the woman whose films were essential in creating France’s New Wave cinema, died on March 28. She was 90.
Varda, who received an Honorary Oscar in November 2017 from Angelina Jolie, died from cancer, her family announced.
Her most recent work, the 2017 documentary Faces Places, was nominated for an Oscar, making her the oldest working director ever nominated. She captured hearts during her campaign for the trophy, and went viral for her rose-printed Gucci look at the 2018 Oscars.
The Belgian-born director, photographer and documentary maker’s career spanned over six decades. She was responsible for award-winning features including Cleo From 5 to 7 (1962), a rare cinema verité film of a woman attending biopsy results told in real-time. Her other best known works include Le Bonheur (1965) and 1984’s Vagabond.
DuBarry Hay, the actress best known for her roles on CHiPs and Black Sheep Squadron, died in late March. She was 63.
DuBarry Hay’s husband Bill Hay confirmed the sad news to the Desert Sunnewspaper, explaining that his wife died on March 23 — just 17 days after celebrating her birthday — at UCLA Medical Center from a rare, deadly fungus.
The exact kind of fungus and how long she had been having health problems were not immediately clear.
Walker, the musician whose career stretched from British pop sensation to avant-garde pioneer, died in late March, his record label announced in a statement. He was 76.
“It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Scott Walker,” the statement read. “Scott Walker has been a unique and challenging titan at the forefront of British music: audacious and questioning, he has produced works that dare to explore human vulnerability and the godless darkness encircling it.”
Born Noel Scott Engel in 1943 in Ohio, Walker started his music career as a session bassist.
Elite swimmer To died while training for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the Hong Kong Sports Institute said in a statement.
To fell ill during a training session in Florida on March 18, according to the Associated Press. He was taken to the hospital, where he later died, the Hong Kong Sports Institute said. He was 26.
The cause of To’s death was not immediately clear.
Born in Hong Kong, To moved to Australia as a child. He won six medals at the 2010 Youth Olympics in Singapore, taking the gold medal in the 400-meter medley. He later won a silver medal as part of part of Australia’s 400-medley relay squad at the 2013 world championships in Barcelona.
Carter was fatally shot with a gun that was being used as a prop on the set of a music video in Texas, according to ABC 13. He was 35.
His mother Cindy McClellan told Fox News that Carter was filming a music video in Houston on March 16 when a gun in his pocket “went off and caught my son in the corner of his eye.”
“He was a wonderful artist,” McClellan told the outlet. “He was the voice, he was the total package and we’re trying to keep his legend [alive].”
McClellan also spoke of her son’s kind heart. “He was a wonderful person, very loving and he loved our God very much,” she told Fox News.
Longtime Los Angeles TV personality Hatten died at age 92.
Hatten was best known as host of KTLA’s Popeye and Friends show, as well as KTLA’s Family Film Festival. KTLA Channel 5 announced his death on March 16, honoring the “local legend” who joined the network in 1952 as an announcer.
Hatten’s longtime friend and former KTLA producer Joe Quasarano confirmed his passing, KTLA Channel 5 reported.
Hatten hosted Popeye and Friends, a daily children’s show, from 1976 to 1988, and Family Film Festival from 1978 to 1992.
The Irish guitarist died in London on March 17, his family told Billboard in a statement. He was 66.
“Bernie Tormé passed away peacefully on the 17th March 2019, one day short of his 67th birthday, surrounded by his family,” read the statement. “He had been on life support for the past four weeks at a London hospital following post-flu complications. Bernie will be remembered for dedicating his life to his music for five decades. He will be sorely missed.”
Tormé recorded several albums with hard rock band Gillan and played with Ozzy Osbourne following guitarist Randy Rhoads’ 1982 death in a plane accident. He also fronted the Bernie Tormé Band and released several solo albums, including last year’s Shadowland.
The “King of the Surf Guitar,” whose biggest hit served as the opening song for 1994 cult classic Pulp Fiction, died on March 16, according to multiple reports. He was 81.
Dale’s agent confirmed the news to Billboard, saying, “It’s a sad day for Rock ‘n’ Roll.”
Dale (né Richard Anthony) is known as the pioneer of surf rock, the rock music subgenre defined by Southern California’s surf culture. He revealed to Billboard in 2015 that while he was suffering from several health issues, he couldn’t keep himself from performing.
“Even with my illnesses and diseases, I’m faster with my hands than I’ve ever been,” he told the publication.
The former contestant on the British reality dating show Love Island died on March 15, according to multiple reports. He was 26.
According to the Daily Mail, the former reality star was found dead in his hometown of Essex. His cause of death has yet to be released.
Prior to competing on Love Island in 2017, Thalassitis was a semi-professional soccer player in England, according to The Guardian. He also appeared on the British reality show Celebs Go Dating.
The legendary session musician labeled by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as perhaps “the most prolific drummer in rock and roll history” died on March 11. He was 90.
Blaine’s death was announced in a statement on his Facebook page.
Blaine — who was born Harold Simon Belsky on Feb. 5, 1929, to Lithuanian and Polish immigrants in Holyoke, Massachusetts — played on more than 40 No. 1 and 350 Top 10 tracks, he said in his 1990 memoir, Hal Blaine and the Wrecking Crew.
Among those were songs for artists like Sam Cooke, Sonny & Cher, the Mamas & the Papas and John Lennon — not to mention classic tracks like “Mr. Tambourine Man” by the Byrds, “Strangers in the Night” by Frank Sinatra, “The Way We Were” by Barbra Streisand and “Mrs. Robinson” by Simon & Garfunkel.
Olympic track cyclist Catlin died of an apparent suicide on March 8, the Associated Press reported.
The 23-year-old athlete earned a silver medal with the women’s pursuit team at the 2016 Rio De Janeiro Games.
Per the AP, Minnesota native Catlin was found dead in her California home.
Her father, Mark Catlin, told the competitive cycling magazine Velo News that the Olympian died by suicide.
“There isn’t a minute that goes by that we don’t think of her and think of the wonderful life she could have lived,” he told the sports outlet. “There isn’t a second in which we wouldn’t freely give our lives in exchange for hers. The hurt is unbelievable.”
The actor died on March 4 from a massive stroke. He was 52.
Perry, who starred as Fred Andrews on the CW series Riverdale, was best known for playing Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210 from 1990-1995. He returned again in 1998 until 2000.
The actor went on to appear in films such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 8 Seconds, and The Fifth Element. He also appeared on sitcoms including Will & Grace and Spin City.
At the time of his death, Perry was surrounded by his children Jack and Sophie, fiancé Wendy Madison Bauer, ex-wife Minnie Sharp, mother Ann Bennett, step-father Steve Bennett, brother Tom Perry, sister Amy Coder, and other close family and friends.
The WWE icon, who memorably battled Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania 2, died on March 4. He was 61.
The athlete’s death was confirmed by longtime friend David Herro on Facebook, and by the WWE.
“Today we lost a Legend and a man I consider family. Rest in Peace Chris,” Herro wrote. “We love you. Thank you for believing in me. #KingKongBundy.”
Bundy, whose real name was Christopher Alan Pallies, entered the WWE in the early ’80s, and later enjoyed a brief acting career, appearing in two episodes of the sitcom Married… With Children as well as the 1988 Richard Pryor comedy Moving.
The beloved hockey star and Ontario native died at age 93, the National Hockey League Player’s Association confirmed on March 4.
“The players and NHLPA staff are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Ted Lindsay – a player, a trailblazer, and a gentleman,” the player’s association said in a tweet. “‘Terrible Ted’ was loved across the hockey world and beyond for his play, dedication to fellow players and charitable work.”
During his career, the athlete — who earned the nickname “Terrible Ted” for his on-the-ice demeanor — scored 379 goals and 472 assists over regular season games, USA Today reported. He also started the tradition of skating around the ice with the Stanley Cup, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The model and body positive activist died on March 1 after a long struggle with ovarian cancer, her family announced on her social media accounts. She was 30.
“Ashley was a country girl at heart who had a passion for life that was undeniable,” her family wrote. “She dreamed of making an impact on people’s lives. She achieved this through the creation of Elly Mayday which allowed her to connect with all of you. Her constant support and love from her followers held a special place in her heart.”
The trailblazing model was born as Ashley Luther in Saskatchewan, Canada, and adopted her new name as she fought her way through the industry as one of the first curvy models.
The actress, who appeared in Invasion and Halt and Catch Fire, died on Feb. 25 in her apartment in New Orleans, her manager Mitch Clem confirmed to PEOPLE. She was 44.
Friend and former costar Donna D’Errico paid tribute to the late actress on Facebook. “It’s so rare to find kind, gentle souls like hers in this industry, this city…even this world. Truly one of the most genuinely sweet and gentle people I’ve ever come across in my life,” she wrote in part.
The actress’ television credits also include Legacy, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Journeyman and The Mentalist, among others.
Helmond, who famously portrayed mother Mona Robinson in ABC’s Who’s The Boss? for eight years and Jessica Tate on Soap, died on Feb. 23 of complications from Alzheimer’s disease at her home in Los Angeles, her talent agency, APA, announced.
Making her television debut in 1962, the Texas native starred in various plays, shows and films, including Family Plot, Brazil and the Cars movies (in which she voiced Lizzie). But her most memorable role would be that of the feisty Mona in Who’s The Boss? (1984-1992), for which she earned two supporting actress Emmy nominations.
Owen, best known for playing the original Marilyn Munster on season 1 of The Munsters, died in late February. She was 81.
Her costar Butch Patrick, who played Eddie Munster, announced the news on Facebook on Feb. 24, writing: “Beautiful Beverly Owen has left us. What a sweet soul. I had the biggest crush on her. RIP Bev and thanks for your 13 memorable Marilyn Munster episodes.”
Owen’s daughter also confirmed the news, telling TMZ that the actress died surrounded by friends and family at her home in Vermont on Feb. 21 after battling ovarian cancer.
Owen was reportedly diagnosed in January 2017 and had kept it private.
Donen, the director of Singin’ in the Rain and one of the last architects of Hollywood’s Golden Age, died at age 94.
One of his sons confirmed the news to the Chicago Tribune on Feb. 23 — perhaps fittingly, on the eve of the Oscars, a night when Hollywood celebrates its legacy of style, glamour and moviemaking talent.
A former Broadway dancer and choreographer, Donen co-directed 1952’s Singin’ in the Rain — widely regarded as the best movie musical of all time — with its star, Gene Kelly. He went on to direct more classic musicals, including Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, It’s Always Fair Weather and Funny Face.
Donen was also acclaimed for sparkling, sophisticated romantic comedies and thrillers, reteaming with Audrey Hepburn for 1963’s Charade and 1967’s Two for the Road.
Comedian and Hangover actor Stevens died on Feb. 22 at age 48, according to The Hollywood Reporter. His cause of death was reported as an apparent suicide, according to The Blast, who obtained a 911 call to his home.
Stevens appeared as Officer Foltz in the 2009 comedy The Hangover. He was also in The Hangover Part II as Kingsley Guy, which was his last feature-length film.
The actor has also been on TV shows such as Jimmy Kimmel Live!, The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn, and as a regular panelist on Chelsea Lately. In 2015, he appeared in the short films Near Fall and Alone Together.
Clark Gable’s grandson, Clark James Gable, was found dead on Feb. 22. He was 30.
The actor, who was also known as Clark Gable III, was found unresponsive, according to his sister Kayley Gable on Facebook. His death was also confirmed to Variety. The outlet reported he died at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
Gable was the host of the reality TV series Cheaters, which exposes infidelity within relationships. He was filming a crime drama titled Sunset Dawn shortly before his death, according to Variety.
His father is John Gable II, the son of actress Kay Williams and the Hollywood icon who is best known for his role as Rhett Butler in the 1939 epic drama Gone with the Wind.
Peter Tork, the blues and folk musician who shot to stardom in 1966 as a member of the Monkees, died on Feb. 21. He was 77.
The news was first announced on a message posted to his Facebook page on Thursday morning. His sister, Anne Thorkelson, also confirmed his death to multiple outlets. Though the precise cause of death is unknown at the present time, in 2009 he was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, adenoid cystic carcinoma, which affected his tongue.
Bandmate Micky Dolenz paid his respects in a Facebook post, writing, “There are no words right now…heart broken over the loss of my Monkee brother, Peter Tork.”
“I am told he slipped away peacefully,” he added in a longer message a short time later. “Yet, as I write this my tears are awash, and my heart is broken.”
Casino actor Vinny Vella died from liver cancer on Feb. 21. He was 72.
The news was confirmed to USA Today and was also shared on the late actor’s Facebook page along with a photo of Vella in black and white.
“We are saddened to report that Vinny Vella has passed and I’m sure that no one more saddened than himself,” the caption read. “Vinny loved life from his family to his friends and fans he was easily one of the funniest, endearing actors to have ever graced the screen. Vinny also had integrity and pride rarely seen.”
Vella, a New York City native, was best known for his role in Martin Scorsese’s 1995 crime classic Casino, in which he acted alongside Robert De Niro. He also starred in HBO mobster series The Sopranos for five seasons, as well as the 2012 mobster comedy Analyze This, also starring De Niro.
The creative director of Chanel, Fendi and his eponymous line Karl Lagerfeld died on Feb. 19. He was 85.
There is no confirmed cause of death, multiple outlets have reported.
In a statement, Chanel announced: “It is with deep sadness that the House of Chanel announces the passing of Karl Lagerfeld, the Creative Director for the Chanel Fashion House since 1983.” Scores of celebrities, models and fellow designers also paid tribute to the late style icon.
Born in Germany to Elisabeth Bahlmann and Otto Lagerfeld, a wealthy Hamburg businessman, he later emigrated to France where he graduated from Lycée Montaigne with a focus on drawing and history.
After winning the Woolmark Prize design competition he landed his first job in the industry under Pierre Balmain as his assistant in 1955, and from there his career took off, bringing him to various other fashion houses including Chloé and Fendi. While Lagerfeld was an author, photographer and prolific sketch artist, he is best known for revitalizing the iconic brand founded by Coco Chanel when he took over the reigns at Chanel in 1983.
With his trademark black sunglasses, powdered white ponytail and black leather gloves, the style icon was one of few designers who consistently remained as immediately recognizable as their designs.
The My 600-Lb. Life star died on Feb. 17 of complications from an infection, his father, Matt Milliken, announced on Facebook, according to TMZ. He was 29.
“Sunday he was having problems with his breathing, they were able to resuscitate him and a short time later his heart stopped,” Matt said, according to the outlet.
Sean first appeared on My 600-Lb. Life in 2016, when he was bedridden and weighed around 900 lbs. He and his mother, Renee, moved to Houston so he could get weight loss surgery, through which he successfully dropped 400 lbs.
TLC said in a statement that they were “saddened” to learn of Sean’s death.
The younger sister of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and former princess died at her home in New York City on Feb. 15, according to the New York Times and WWD. She was 85.
Radziwill’s daughter, Anna Christina Radziwill, told the Times that her mother died of natural causes. The style icon was also mother-in-law to Real Housewives of New York alum Carole Radziwill.
Lee lived a storied life, befriending some of the greatest and most stylish artists of her time, including ballet star Rudolf Nureyev, author Truman Capote and Andy Warhol. After news of her death became public, many members of the fashion industry paid tribute to her.
In her later years, Lee gave a few interviews about her legendary life. In 2013, she told the New York Times: “Regrets? I think everyone has regrets, and people who say they haven’t are either liars… or narcissists.”
“There have been many things in my life to have regrets about, in the sense I wish I could have changed them, or somehow made them not happen. What I don’t have is envy. I’m perfectly content at this time of my life. I’ve done so many fascinating things and the greatest joy is that I continue to do interesting things and meet fascinating people.”
Argenziano, best known for his roles in Stargate SG-1 and The Godfather: Part II, died at age 75, his rep confirmed to PEOPLE on Feb 11.
In a Facebook post, Event Horizon Talent announced the death of Argenziano, who worked as an actor for more than four decades.
“It is with a heavy heart and more sadness than anyone can realize right now that I announce the passing of client Carmen Argenziano at the age of 75,” the post begins.
In part, it continues, “While Carmen was a client, he was also a good friend. While he was a class act and a consummate gentleman at the events he was booked for, he was also a caring and generous person.”
He is survived by his wife, Lisa A. Angelocci, and his three children, according to The Sun.
The Airwolf actor died on Feb. 10 after suffering cardiac arrest, according to a death certificate obtained by TMZ. He was 74.
The late actor had been dealing with health issues in recent years, particularly in 2012, when he said his right leg had been amputated following an infection in his leg due to complications from peripheral artery disease, according to a 2014 interview with the National Inquirer.
In addition to Airwolf, Vincent appeared in the 1983 miniseries The Winds of War and films such as The Mechanic and Big Wednesday. His final film role was in the 2003 independent film White Boy.
The famed British actor — known for his roles in Erin Brockovich, Annie, BigFish, Skyfall and the Bourne franchise — died of an undisclosed illness on Feb. 8, his family said in a statement obtained by the BBC. He was 82.
The five-time Oscar nominee disclosed in 2011 that he had been suffering from kidney cancer, The Guardian reported.
Born in Salford in 1936, Finney began his career as a stage actor, studying alongside Alan Bates and Peter O’Toole at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.
He’d receive his first of five Oscar nominations for playing the title character in 1963’s Tom Jones, which itself was named 1964’s Best Picture. Other leading actor Oscar nominations would come for Finney for his work Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Dresser (1983) and Under the Volcano (1984). In 2000, he was nominated for his supporting role in Erin Brockovich.
Dingell, a Michigan Democrat and the longest-serving member of Congress in U.S. history — who in recent years delighted his 264,000 followers on Twitter with biting commentary and wit — died on Feb. 7 at home in Dearborn. He was 92.
Dingell fought for years for key liberal causes including healthcare expansion and civil rights. He had a heart attack in September, according to ABC News, and was suffering from complications of prostate cancer, the Washington Post reported.
His wife, Rep. Debbie Dingell, shared her grief on Facebook, writing that her “heart is broken.”
“My true love is gone,” she wrote. “The tears are flowing pretty freely as I miss the man that made me whole. One can know it is coming, but nothing prepares you for the hole in your heart. He was my one and only true love.”
John was the representative for Michigan’s 15th Congressional District for 59 years — beginning in 1955, when as a 29-year-old he succeeded his father who died in office, until his wife won his seat upon his retirement in 2014.
Robinson — the first black manager of the MLB, a first ballot Hall of Famer, and the only player to have won the Most Valuable Player Award in both leagues — died on Feb. 7. He was 83.
“[His] résumé in our game is without parallel, a trailblazer in every sense, whose impact spanned generations,” MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement posted to the league’s website. “He was one of the greatest players in the history of our game, but that was just the beginning of a multifaceted baseball career.”
Robinson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame during his first year of eligibility in 1982. The slugger spent some 21 seasons in the league, between the Cinncinati Reds, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, Anaheim Angels and Cleveland Indians.
In 2005, Robinson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush, and six years later was appointed as Executive Vice President of Baseball Development by Bud Selig, then the commissioner of the MLB.
Iconic horror movie actress Adams, who starred as Kay Lawrence in Creature from the Black Lagoon, died on Feb. 3. She was 92.
She rose to fame as the woman who wore a white, one-piece bathing suit to take a dip in a lagoon in the 1954 film as the Gill-man beneath copied her every movie. The scene was often recreated in movies like Jaws and The Shape of Water.
She was married to actor and director Ray Danton from 1954 to 1981. Afterward, she dated film and TV writer Ronald M. Cohen until he died in 1998, according to Deadline.
Adams is survived by her two sons, Steve and Michael Danton, and her four grandchildren.
The Young and the Restless star died on Feb. 3 at his home in San Fernando Valley. He was 52.
The Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to PEOPLE that a death investigation took place for a possible alcohol overdose.
In 2014, St. John’s son Julian with ex-wife Mia St. John died by suicide at the age of 24. In 2017, the actor underwent psychiatric treatment after a reported scare regarding his mental health. According to TMZ, he threatened to kill himself with a gun and was placed under a 72-hour hold for psychiatric evaluation.
St. John’s last activity on Twitter was on Jan. 21, when he retweeted a tweet about losing a child that reads, “Grieving the loss of a child is a process. It begins on the day your child passes, and ends the day the parent joins them.”
Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Bradley died on Jan. 31 in Nashville. He was 93.
Bradley’s daughters confirmed that the famed guitarist died “peacefully in his sleep” in a post on his Facebook page.
“This is from Harold’s daughters. Walt this morning Harold died peacefully in his sleep. Many of you know him as a successful musician and no doubt many stories will be told in the coming week. But to us, his greatest accomplishment was being the best dad in the world. We love you, dad,” they wrote.
Miller, the veteran actor best known for his role in Gremlins and A Bucket of Blood, died on Jan. 30. He was 90.
Miller passed away from natural causes and was surrounded by his family, a spokesperson for the Millers told The Hollywood Reporter. His death comes a little over one month after the legendary character actor celebrated his 90th birthday.
“His sense of humor and the unique way he looked at the world won him many lifelong friends and worldwide fans,” his family told the outlet in a statement.
Miller’s prolific career spanned over 60 years, appearing in hundreds of movies and television series during that time. In the 1950s, he met director Roger Corman, whom he ended up working with for more than two decades.
Moritz, an actress famous for her role in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, died in late January, her rep told The Blast. She was 72.
The actress passed away from natural causes related to her heart, according to the representative. Her death comes four years after she accused Bill Cosby of sexual assault and misconduct.
“Louisa Moritz was so full of life, talent, and she was a genius with a 6th sense for making money,” her rep Edward Lozzi told The Blast. “Her parties in Mt. Olympus in the 1980’s were wild … Her 100’s of TV and film roles will keep her memory alive with her fans forever. Her support of other women who accused Bill Cosby of rape will keep her with us for years to come.”
Ingram, a Grammy-winning R&B singer-songwriter, died on Jan. 29. He was 66.
Ingram reportedly died from a form of brain cancer and had been ill for some time, according to TMZ.
His longtime friend and creative partner, choreographer and Grey’s Anatomy producer Debbie Allen, confirmed the news on social media.
“I have lost my dearest friend and creative partner James Ingram to the Celestial Choir,” she announced in a tweet. “He will always be cherished, loved and remembered for his genius, his love of family and his humanity. I am blessed to have been so close. We will forever speak his name.”
Comedian Barnett died on Jan. 22 at the age of 32.
Barnett died from complications caused by pancreatitis while vacationing in Mexico, according to E! News.
Last Podcast Network, on which Barnett co-hosted weekly podcast Roundtable of Gentlemen, spoke out about his unexpected death via Twitter.
“The joy he brought to our lives is the greatest gift we have ever received,” the statement read in part. “Remind your friends you love them because you never know when you’ll see them again. We love you KB.”
Barnett co-created Fox’s comedy series Rel, which premiered in September. He also worked on Unhitched as a producer and on The Carmichael Show as a consulting producer and writer. He had two writing projects in the works: The Wrong Missy and Alcoholics Unanimous.
The professional soccer player, who had recently signed to Cardiff City Football Club, died in a plane crash on Jan. 21, authorities confirmed. He was 28.
The plane carrying Sala was traveling from Nantes, France, to Cardiff, Wales, when it disappeared from radar over the English Channel on Jan. 21, according to The Washington Post.
After nearly three weeks of searching, authorities confirmed that Sala had been identified by HM Coroner after his body was recovered from the wreckage.
Sala’s sister Romina also spoke out on Facebook, sharing a photo of the soccer star standing on the field with his arms open and head towards the sky.
“Your soul in my soul, it will shine forever, thus illuminating the time of my existence. I love you tito,” she wrote in Spanish.
Ballard, who starred in the 1960s sitcom The Mothers-In-Law, died on Jan. 21. She was 93.
The actress and singer, who appeared in Broadway musicals and performed in nightclubs, died at her home in Rancho Mirage, California, according to the Associated Press. Her death comes after a battle with kidney cancer.
In early January, a documentary about her life, Kaye Ballard: The Show Goes On, premiered at the Palm Springs International Film Festival in Palms Springs, California.
“She was so excited to be able to tell her story,” said the film’s director, Dan Wingate, according to AP. “She was really anxious for young people, especially, who are going into the arts to understand the full breadth of a life in the arts, the ups and downs.”
Levy, known as Steve Bean, died after a battle with nose cancer on Jan. 21 at his home in Los Angeles, according to his obituary on Legacy.com. He was 58.
The actor, famous for his role in Ray Donovan, was diagnosed with “a rare and aggressive form of cancer called Sino-Nasal Squamous Cell Carcinoma,” he wrote in a personal essay for Mel Magazine. “In English, I translated that to ‘Nose Cancer.’” He underwent a rhinectomy and later had a prosthetic nose, and revealed in his 2018 essay that doctors told him he had up to one year to live.
Born April 27, 1960, in Lynn, Massachusetts, Levy attended Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and went on to work as an actor, comedian and writer.
He is survived by his wife, Caroline Carrigan; his son, Jacob Randall Levy; and parents, Irwin and Dorothy Levy, among numerous other family members.
Professional surfer Brown died on Jan. 19. He was 48.
Brown’s body was found washed ashore on Hendry’s Beach in Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Independent reported.
At press time, his exact cause of death remained unclear and was currently under investigation, spokesperson Anthony Wager told the outlet.
At only 17 years old, Brown won the juniors division of the 1988 World Amateur Surfing Championships. He later went pro in the 1990s, winning the Professional Surfing Association of America Championship in 1994.
He is survived by his 22-year-old daughter Chloe.
Former U.S. figure skater Coughlin died by suicide in Kansas City, Missouri, on Jan. 18, according to his sister Angela Laune. He was 33.
“My wonderful, strong, amazingly compassionate brother John Coughlin took his own life earlier today,” Laune wrote on Facebook. “I have no words.”
Coughlin was a two-time U.S. Pairs Champion and worked as a coach, TV commentator and skater with U.S. Figure Skating and the International Skating Union. He participated in two world championships, placing sixth in 2011 and eighth in 2012.
One day before his death, SafeSport — an organization that has “exclusive jurisdiction over sexual misconduct” in the Olympic loop, acording to USA Today — placed Coughlin on “temporary suspension” from participating in figure skating pending final resolution of a metter presented to them.
The oldest living member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame died on Jan. 18. He was 93.
The Wood Brothers Racing organization — the company he co-founded alongside his brother, Leonard — announced the news of the champion racer’s passing.
“It’s with profound sadness that we mourn the passing of team founder and family patriarch Glen Wood this morning,” they wrote on Twitter. “We want to thank family, friends, our small-town Virginia community of Patrick County, as well as everyone in the NASCAR community for their unwavering support.”
Channing, the saucer-eyed, gravelly voiced Broadway barnstormer whose offbeat personality and marquee value fueled such Golden Age musicals as Gentleman Prefer Blondes and Hello, Dolly!, died on Jan. 15, her publicist B Harlan Boll confirmed in a statement to PEOPLE. She was 97.
Boll said that Channing died at 12:31 a.m., at her home in Rancho Mirage, California, of natural causes.
“It is with extreme heartache, that I have to announce the passing of an original Industry Pioneer, Legend and Icon – Miss Carol Channing,” the statement said. “I admired her before I met her, and have loved her since the day she stepped … or fell rather … into my life. It is so very hard to see the final curtain lower on a woman who has been a daily part of my life for more than a third of it.”
Former Miami Dolphins guard Kuechenberg died on Jan. 12 at age 71, the NFL team confirmed in an online statement the following morning.
Kuechenberg was a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame and a member of the Dolphins Honor Roll. He joined the Dolphins in 1970 and played for the franchise until 1983 — retiring at the age of 37.
Many of his former teammates spoke out after Kuechenberg, known as “Kooch,” passed away.
“Kooch was a tough, talented and smart leader… He made all of us better through his passion and ability to play the game AND HUMOR,” wrote Bob Baumhower, former defensive tackle for the Dolphins, in a statement shared by the team.
Latin musician Fret died on Jan. 10. He was 24.
The singer and rapper, who dubbed himself the first openly gay Latin trap artist, according to Billboard, was fatally shot and killed in Santurce, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The “Soy Asi” singer was riding his motorcycle at around 5:30 a.m. when he was attacked. He later died at the Medical Center of Río Piedras, El Nuevo Dia reported.
Fret’s manager Eduardo Rodriguez spoke out about the musician’s tragic death, telling website Remezcla, “Kevin was an artistic soul, a dreamer with a big heart.”
“His passion was music, and he still had a lot left to do. This violence should stop. There are no words to describe our emotions and the pain that it causes us to know that a person with so many dreams has to go,” Rodriguez continued.
Australian model and actress Braakensiek died in early January.
On Jan. 6, police visited Braakensiek’s home in Sydney for a welfare check after those close to the star became concerned about her whereabouts as she had not been heard from, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.
Inside the home, police found the body of a 46-year-old woman.
At this time, her cause of death remains unknown and is not thought to be suspicious, The Guardian reported.
Less than a month before she was found dead, Braakensiek shared an Instagram post about feeling that life was “twisted and upside down” on Dec. 14.
Former Arizona Cardinals safety Lassiter died on Jan. 6 at age 49, the team confirmed in an online release.
According Arizona Sports, the athlete — who memorably completed four interceptions in the 1998 season’s last game, securing his team a spot in the playoffs — reportedly died of an apparent heart attack while working out.
“We were all devastated to learn of Kwamie’s passing today and our hearts go out to all of his family and friends,” Cardinals team president Michael Bidwill said in a statement. “Kwamie came to the Cardinals as an undrafted rookie free agent. He not only became a key contributor to our team for eight seasons but continued to make an impact on this community after his playing days ended. He will be missed greatly.”
Dain, an actor from the Pacific Islands, died on Jan. 5. He was 24.
Best known for his role in the Oscar-nominated film Tanna, Dain leaves behind his wife, Nancy, and two children, according to AP.
The Vanuatu native passed away after cutting his leg open in Port-Vila and contracting an infection that was not immediately treated, according to The New York Times.
Tanna co-director Martin Butler spoke out about Dalin’s tragic death, telling AP, “I was totally devastated. He was so fit and young and gorgeous. His wife is fabulous and the kids are great,” Butler told the outlet. “He was a great example of how you can live a totally different type of life, and still be completely happy.”
Famed WWE interviewer Okerlund — known by many by his nickname, “Mean Gene” — died at the beginning of the year, the WWE announced in an online statement. He was 76.
Okerlund’s cause of death was not immediately revealed.
“In his early days, ‘Mean Gene,’ as he was named by fellow Minnesotan, Jesse ‘The Body’ Ventura first came to prominence by interviewing the greatest stars of the AWA, including Ventura, Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan and Hulk Hogan,” the WWE said.
Okerlund joined the WWE in 1984, conducting ringside interviews with the sports’ biggest stars, including Hogan. Additionally, he hosted shows including All-American Wresting and Tuesday Night Titans.
Einstein died on Jan. 2 in Indian Wells, California, shortly after being diagnosed with cancer, Deadline reported. He was 76.
It is unclear what type of cancer he had and if that directly caused his death.
Einstein became known for his role as Marty Funkhouser on Curb. The serious and often untempered character appeared in nearly two dozen episodes from 2004-2011.
“I’m in shock. I knew him forever,” Einstein’s Curb costar Richard Lewis tweeted Wedneday. “His role on #curbyourenthusiasm was excruciatingly brilliant! Our cast and crew will be devastated. He was so loved. He told me how much he loved LD and Curb. RIP buddy.”
Daryl “Captain” Dragon — half of the legendary 1970s pop duo Captain & Tennille — died on Jan. 2.
The “Love Will Keep Us Together” singer died of renal failure while in hospice in Prescott, Arizona, Dragon’s rep confirmed to PEOPLE. He was 76.
Dragon’s ex-wife and musical partner, Toni Tennille, was by his side at the time of his death. The pair remained close despite their separation, and Tennille, 78, had moved to Arizona to help care for Dragon.
“He was a brilliant musician with many friends who loved him greatly. I was at my most creative in my life, when I was with him, Tennille told PEOPLE in a statement.
Andres, Steve Buscemi’s wife of over 30 years and a filmaker, choreographer and artist, died in early January. She was 64.
Andres received acclaim for her 1996 film Black Kites, which played at several film festivals, including Sundance, Toronto and London. She also directed music and art videos, including her own performance works.
In an interview with the Independent in 2009, Buscemi said his favorite work of art was “probably something by my wife Jo Andres.”
She leaves behind her husband and their 29-year-old son, Lucian.
Young, ex-wife of Neil Young and a musician in her own right, died on Jan. 1.
The news of her death comes a year after she was diagnosed with cancer. She was 66.
“With great sadness, we confirm that on January 1st, after a year-long battle with cancer, Pegi Young — mother, grandmother, sister, auntie, musician, activist and co-founder of the Bridge School — passed away surrounded by her friends and family in her native California,” a statement from Pegi’s Facebook page read.
Pegi is survived by her children with Neil — son Ben and daughter Amber.
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