Deaths

Remembering those we lost in 2016

From David Bowie in January to this week's back-to-back deaths of mother and daughter Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, 2016 saw the passing of many notable people — politicians, celebrities and heroes. Here's a glimpse of just some of the luminaries and legends we lost this year.

David Bowie

Rock legend David Bowie performs on stage at the Forum in Copenhagen late 07 October 2003.
Nils Meilvang | AFP | Getty Images

David Bowie, Jan. 10, age of 69 after an 18-month-long battle with cancer. The singer-actor rose to fame in the early 1970s, and shook up financial markets in 1997, forgoing future royalties by auctioning bonds linked to future revenues from his CD sales.

Alan Rickman

Alan Rickman at the screening of 'A Little Chaos' during the 58th BFI London Film Festival at Odeon West End on October 17, 2014.
Mike Marsland | WireImage

Alan Rickman, Jan. 14, age 69. The British actor was perhaps best remembered for his role as Severus Snape in the "Harry Potter" films. Rickman appeared in each movie of the film franchise, which Forbes says generated about $10 billion from 2001 to 2011.

Glenn Frey

Musician Glenn Frey of The Eagles performs onstage during the 16th Annual Race to Erase MS event themed 'Rock To Erase MS' co-chaired by Nancy Davis and Tommy Hilfiger at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza on May 8, 2009 in Century City, California.
Kevork Djansezian | Getty Images

Glenn Frey, Jan. 18, age 67. The guitarist was a founding member of the Eagles. After the rock band separated, Frey had a successful solo career, recording the songs "The One You Love," "Smuggler's Blues" and "The Heat Is On."

Abe Vigoda

Abe Vigoda
ABC Photo Archives | ABC via Getty Images

Abe Vigoda, Jan. 26, age 94. The Brooklyn-born actor portrayed Salvatore Tessio in the blockbuster hit "The Godfather" and Detective Phil Fish in TV's "Barney Miller."

Antonin Scalia

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
Getty Images

Antonin Scalia, in his sleep the night of Feb. 12/13, age 79. One of the Supreme Court's staunch conservatives, Scalia was known for his sharp comments on and off the bench.

Boutros Boutros-Ghali

Boutros Boutros-Ghali at home in Cairo, Egypt on December 17, 1991
Jean-Michel Turpin | Gamma-Rapho | Getty Images

Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Feb. 16, age 93. The Egyptian diplomat was the first U.N. secretary-general from Africa. He also helped negotiate his country's peace deal with Israel.

Harper Lee

Harper Lee
Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

Harper Lee, Feb. 19, age 89. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author's "To Kill a Mockingbird" was released at the height of the civil rights era and became an instant sensation. Seven months before her death, her only known other novel, "Go Set a Watchman," was published. It had been billed as a sequel of "Mockingbird" but was believed to have been a draft.

George Kennedy

Actor George Kennedy, June 30, 1983.
Yvonne Hemsey | Getty Images

George Kennedy, Feb. 28, age 91. Kennedy won an Academy Award for best supporting actor in the drama "Cool Hand Luke."

Sir George Martin

Beatles record producer George Martin
Clarence Davis | NY Daily News Archive | Getty Images

Sir George Martin, March 2, age 90. Known as "the Fifth Beatle" Martin was named by Guinness World Records as the most successful music producer ever, with more than 50 No. 1 hit records over five decades.

Nancy Reagan

Former First Lady Nancy Reagan
Dirck Halstead | Liaison

Nancy Reagan, March 6, age 94. The actress and wife of President Ronald Reagan worked with numerous charitable groups, spent hours visiting veterans, the elderly and the disabled.

Morley Safer

60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer
CBS | Getty Images

Morley Safer, May 19, age 84. The long-time CBS News "60 Minutes" newsman also reported on the Vietnam War during his six decades in broadcast journalism.

Malik Izaak Taylor

MC Phife Dawg (Malik Taylor) of A Tribe Called Quest performs at 2013 H2O Music Festival at Los Angeles Historical Park on August 17, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.
Rodrigo Vaz | FilmMagic

Malik Izaak Taylor, March 22, age 45, from complications of diabetes. Known as rapper Phife Dawg, he was a member of the group A Tribe Called Quest.

Garry Shandling

Garry Shandling during 21st Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival - 'Special Thanks to Roy London' at Victoria Theatre in Santa Barbara, California, United States.

Garry Shandling, March 24, age 66. The comedian, writer and producer was perhaps best known for "The Larry Sanders Show," which bridged the gap between TV fiction and the behind-the-scenes world of show business.

Patty Duke

Patty Duke
Todd Williamson | FilmMagic

Patty Duke, March 29, age 69. She won the best supporting actress Oscar at age 16 for her portrayal of Helen Keller in the 1962 film "The Miracle Worker."

Zaha Hadid

Iraqi-born London-based architect Zaha Hadid poses in front of the building housing the 'Phaeno' Science Center and museum in Wolfsburg 23 November 2005.

Dame Zaha Hadid, March 31, age 65. The Iraqi-born British architect was the first woman to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize.

Merle Haggard

Merle Haggard performs at the 42nd Annual Willie Nelson 4th of July Picnic at Austin360 Amphitheater on July 4, 2015 in Austin, Texas.
Gary Miller | Getty Images

Merle Haggard, April 6, his 79th birthday. In a career spanning over six decades, the country music singer-guitarist composed and performed numerous hits, including "Hungry Eyes" and "Okie From Muskogee."

Prince

Prince performence on October 11, 2009 at the Grand Palais in Paris.

Prince, April 21, age 57. The flamboyant Prince Rogers Nelson sold tens of millions of albums worldwide in a career that spanned more than four decades.

Muhammad Ali

World heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali
Stanley Weston | Getty Images

Muhammad Ali, June 3, age 74. Born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr., "The Greatest of All Time" was a three-time world heavyweight boxing champion and civil rights champion who suffered a decades-long battle with Parkinson's disease.

Gordie Howe

Gordie Howe waves to the crowd during his son's Mark Howe of the Philadelphia Flyers number-retirement ceremony on March 6, 2012 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Len Redkoles | NHLI | Getty Images

Gordie Howe, June 10, age 88. "Mr. Hockey" played 26 seasons in the NHL, leading the Detroit Red Wings to four Stanley Cups.

Pat Summitt

Head coach Pat Summitt of the Tennessee Lady Vols at the Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony on September 5, 2003 in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Jesse Garrabrant | NBAE | Getty Images

Pat Summitt, June 28, age 64. As coach of the University of Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team from 1974 to 2012, Summit piled up 1,098 victories, the most in NCAA basketball history — for women or men. She retired after being diagnosed with Alzheimer's.

Buddy Ryan

Head Coach Buddy Ryan of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on prior to the start of an NFL football game circa 1989.
Focus on Sport | Getty Images

Buddy Ryan, June 28, age 85. Ryan was an NFL coach for 26 seasons, including head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cardinals. As defensive coordinator with the Chicago Bears, he created the storied 46 defense.

Elie Wiesel

Romanian-born author and concentration camp survivor Elie Wiesel
Nancy R. Schiff | Hulton Archive | Getty Images

Elie Wiesel, July 2, age 87. After surviving the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps, Wiesel wrote dozens of books. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986 for his campaigns against oppression and genocide.

Garry Marshall

American producer, writer, actor and director Garry Marshall.
Nancy R. Schiff | Getty Images

Garry Marshall, July 19, age 81. The director and writer was behind some of the 1970s most renowned sitcoms, including "Happy Days" and "The Odd Couple." He also directed the 1990 comedy "Pretty Woman."

Juan Gabriel

Ethan Miller | Getty Images

Juan Gabriel, Aug. 28, age 66. One of Mexico's most successful vocalists and composers, Gabriel was a six-time Grammy nominee. "El Divo de Juarez" was credited with writing more than 1,800 songs, including "Hasta que te conoci" and "Querida."

Gene Wilder

Actors Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka in the film 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory', 1971.
Silver Screen Collection | Getty Images

Gene Wilder, Aug. 29, age 83. Born Jerome Silberman, the actor-comedian starred in Mel Brooks' zany movies "Young Frankenstein," "The Producers" and "Blazing Saddles." His third wife was the late Gilda Radner of "Saturday Night Live."

Arnold Palmer
Chris Condon | PGA

Arnold Palmer, Sept. 25, age 87. Described as "the most charismatic player in golf history," Palmer won every major honor the game has to offer. He is credited with transforming golf from "a sleepy country club game to America's game."

Shimon Peres

Former Israeli President Shimon Peres
Chesnot | Getty Images

Shimon Peres, Sept. 28, age 93. Peres served as Israel's prime minister and president during a six-decade political career. He shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat for the Oslo peace accords.

Edward Albee

Edward Albee speaks during the Dramatists Guild Fifth Annual Benefit Dinner at the Hudson Theater May 10, 2004 in New York City.

Edward Albee, Sept. 16, age 88. The three-time Pulitzer Prize winner's plays include "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" He also won three Tony Awards, including Lifetime Achievement, and received the Gold Medal in Drama from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1980 and the Kennedy Center Honors and the National Medal of Arts in 1996.

King of Thailand Bhumibol Adulyadej

Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej returns from the Grand Palace to Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok on December 5, 2011 on his 84th birthday.
Pairoj | AFP | Getty Images

King Bhumibol, Oct. 13, age 88. Thai king since 1946, Bhumibol was regarded as a unifying figure. In addition to being the world's longest-reigning monarch, he was also the wealthiest, according to Forbes, which estimated his fortune at $30 billion — more than 100 times that of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II.

Tom Hayden

Former 'Chicago Seven' defendant, social activist and California State Legislator, Tom Hayden, poses during a 1976 Pomona, California, photo portrait.
George Rose | Getty Images

Tom Hayden, Oct. 23, age 76. Hayden helped organize anti-war demonstrations during the 1968 Democratic National Convention, becoming a defendant in the Chicago 7 trial. He later pursued a career in politics, serving for almost two decades in the California Assembly and Senate as a progressive force on issues such as the environment and education. His second wife was Jane Fonda.

Bobby Vee

Bobby Vee
Nicky J. Sims | Redferns

Bobby Vee, Oct. 24, age 73. The pop singer first attracted wide attention at age 15 in a tragic twist: He filled in after a plane crash killed four people, including rock stars Richie Valens, Buddy Holly and The Big Bopper. Vee racked up six gold singles and was described by Billboard Magazine as "one of the top 10 most consistent chart makers ever."

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen performing during the Nice Jazz Festival, in Nice, southern France, in July 2008.
Valery Hache | AFP | Getty Images

Leonard Cohen, Nov. 7, age 82. The Montreal-born singer/songwriter was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2008 and was awarded Canada's highest civilian honor. His 1984 song "Hallelujah" has been covered countless times, and his influence on musicians has been compared to Bob Dylan's.

Janet Reno

Attorney General Janet Reno testifies before the house panel investigating the 1993 standoff between federal agents and members of the Branch Davidian cult in Waco, Texas.
Harry Hamburg | NY Daily News Archive | Getty Images

, Nov. 7, age 78. As attorney general in the Clinton administration, Reno was the first female to serve as the nation's top law enforcer. She oversaw such investigations as the World Trade Center and Oklahoma City bombings, the Unabomber case and the deportation of young Elian Gonzalez to Cuba.

Gwen Ifill

Gwen Ifill, Nov. 14, age 61. The award-winning journalist in 1999 became the first African-American woman to host a nationally televised public affairs program, PBS' "Washington Week in Review."

Florence Henderson

, Nov. 24, age 82. Henderson was best known for her role as Carol Brady, the cheerful mom on the 1970s sitcom "The Brady Bunch."

Fidel Castro

Fidel Castro, Nov. 25, age 90. Castro seized power in Cuba in 1959, survived a CIA-sponsored invasion, brought the world to the brink of nuclear war and ruled with a repressive hand for five decades until poor health forced him out in 2008.

John Glenn

, Dec. 8, age 95. In 1962, the Mercury 7 astronaut became the first American to orbit Earth. In 1998, he became the oldest person to fly in space when, as a U.S. senator from Ohio, he flew on the space shuttle Discovery.

Alan Thicke

Alan Thicke, Dec. 13, age 69. The Canadian-born actor was best known for his role Jason Seaver in ABC's "Growing Pains."

Zsa Zsa Gabor

, Dec. 18, believed to be 99. The Hungarian-born starlet had an extensive career with more than 70 TV and film credits. Gabor was also known for her romantic life, having married nine times.

George Michael

George Michael, Christmas Day, age 53. Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, the singer catapulted to fame in the 1980s in the duo Wham! He sold more than 100 million records, including "Last Christmas."

Carrie Fisher

Actress Carrie Fisher signs copies of her new book 'The Princess Diarist' at Barnes & Noble at The Grove on November 28, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.
Paul Archuleta | FilmMagic

Carrie Fisher, Dec. 27, age 60. The daughter of Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher was 19 when she appeared in her breakthrough role, as Princess Leia in the original "Star Wars." She recently finished filming the latest installment, "Star Wars: Episode VIII." She also was an author. Her books included "Postcards from the Edge," a satirical account of her struggles against bipolar disorder.

Debbie Reynolds

Debbie Reynolds died at age 84, just one day after her daughter. Reynolds had a multidecade career in movies and television, with a breakout role in "Singin' in the Rain" at age 19, the same age her daughter starred in "Star Wars." Reynolds' son, Todd Fisher, said the stress of his sister's death "was too much." "She said, 'I want to be with Carrie,'" the son said. "And then she was gone."

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