Getty Images / Redferns / Richard E. Aaron

Died April 30

Muddy Waters is known as the "Father of Modern Chicago Blues." Waters was born in Mississippi, where he launched his blues career. He moved to Chicago in 1943, where he recorded for Aristocrat Records. Waters and his band recorded some of the greatest blues classics including "Hoochie Coochie Man." He influenced many rock 'n' rollers including the Rolling Stones, who named themselves after one of his songs. We remember Waters' life today as well as the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.

Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including actress Jill Clayburgh.

2015: Ben E. King, U.S. Soul and R & B singer who was a member of the Drifters and who also sang the hit song "Stand by Me," dies at 76.

He broke through with "Spanish Harlem," co-written by Phil Spector and Jerry Leiber, and sealed his name in music history with "Stand by Me." A reworked gospel number co-written by King, Leiber, and Mike Stoller, "Stand by Me" was a soaring declaration of dependence and devotion, chosen as one of the Songs of the Century by the Recording Industry Association of America and added earlier this year to the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry. Read more




2013: Mike Gray, U.S. screenwriter who co-wrote "The China Syndrome" and was a series writer for "Star Trek: The Next Generation," dies at 77.

2009: Venetia Burney, English woman who, when she was 11, suggested the name Pluto for the planet (now a dwarf planet) discovered by Clyde Tombaugh in 1930, dies at 90.

2007: Zola Taylor, U.S. singer who was an original member of the Platters and later claimed to be one of three widows of singer Frankie Lymon, dies at 69.

2007: Gordon Scott, U.S. actor who played Tarzan in five movies during the 1950s, dies at 80.

Scott was a lifeguard at the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas when he was discovered by Hollywood producer Sol Lesser, said Scott's brother Rayfield Werschkull of Portland, Oregon. He was signed to a 7-year contract after he outperformed 200 other international candidates. Read more




2007: Tom Poston, U.S. actor known best as George Utley on "Newhart," dies at 85.

If a TV show was funny any time in the second half of the 20th century, there's a good chance Poston was involved with it. Whether he was a regular cast member, a recurring character or a one-time guest, and whether the show was a sitcom, game show, variety, or talk show, chances are that Poston was there, making it funnier. Read more




1999: Darrell Sweet, English musician who was the drummer for the band Nazareth, dies at 51.

1996: David Opatoshu, U.S. actor who appeared on "Star Trek" and "The Twilight Zone," dies at 78.

1994: Richard Scarry, U.S. children's book author whose books sold more than 100 million units, including the popular "Best Word Book Ever," dies at 74.

1989: Sergio Leone, Italian movie director known best for his spaghetti Westerns, including "A Fistful of Dollars" and "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly," dies at 60.

1986: Robert Stevens, English movie director who directed many Disney films, including "Old Yeller," "Mary Poppins," and "The Love Bug," dies at 81.

1983: Muddy Waters, U.S. blues musician who was called the Father of Modern Chicago Blues and exerted a huge influence on the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix, dies at 70.

Muddy Waters (Wikimedia Commons / Jean-Luc)Unlike many of the blues pioneers, Waters lived long enough to enjoy the late-'60s blues revival and meet many of the artists his music inspired. "My hero?" Keith Richards told "It's got to be Muddy Waters. Because I know him as an all-round gent and his music is sublime." Read more




1983: George Balanchine, Russian choreographer, dies at 79.

1982: Lester Bangs, influential U.S. music journalist who wrote for Rolling Stone and Cream, dies of an accidental overdose at 33.

1974: Agnes Moorehead, U.S. actress well-known for playing Endora on the sitcom "Bewitched," dies at 73.

Moorehead bewitched a generation of television viewers with her funny, haughty portrayal of magical matriarch Endora on the 1960s and '70s hit sitcom "Bewitched." Though she didn't appear in every episode, Moorehead became well-known for her role, with most fans remembering her better for the show than for anything else in her career. Read more




1972: Gia Scala, U.S. actress who was in the movie "The Guns of Navarone" and appeared more than once on "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," dies at 38.

1970: Inger Stevens, U.S. actress who starred on the 1960s sitcom "The Farmer's Daughter" and had roles in movies including "Madigan" with Henry Fonda, dies of a drug overdose at 35.

1965: Helen Chandler, U.S. actress known best for playing Mina Harker in "Dracula," dies at 59.

1963: Bryant Washburn, U.S. actor who appeared in more than 300 films including "The Millionaire Kid," dies at 74.

1900: Casey Jones, U.S. railroad conductor who became famous for saving the lives of everyone on his passenger train when he saw a stopped freight train up ahead on the tracks and was able to slow the train's speed enough at the last minute to lessen the collision, dies in that crash at 37.

One hundred and 50 years after Jones' birth, it's easy to be confused about just what the legendary railroad engineer did. Not only have the decades faded the memory of his deeds – so has pop culture, with a series of Jones tales that range from a little wrong to near-complete fabrication. Read more




1883: Edouard Manet, French painter well-known for his work in impressionism, dies at 51.

Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including actress Jill Clayburgh.