Died December 7

The morning of Dec. 7, 1941, the Japanese navy launched an attack on the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, killing more than 2,400 military personnel and civilians. The attack led to America's involvement in World War II. We remember that day today as well as the lives of notable people who died this day in history.

Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including character actor Eli Wallach.

2014: Ken Weatherwax, U.S. actor known best for his iconic role as Pugsley on the sitcom "The Addams Family," dies at 59.

Weatherwax played Pugsley Addams on the original "The Addams Family" television series. After "The Addams Family" was canceled, he found it difficult to get work in Hollywood  and was typecast as Pugsley well into his teens. Weatherwax later worked behind the camera as a movie studio grip and set builder. Read more





2012: Jeni Le Gon, U.S. dancer and actress who danced on screen with Fred Astaire and Bill Robinson, dies at 96.

2011: Harry Morgan, U.S. Emmy-winning actor noted for his roles on TV's "Dragnet" and the long-running sitcom "M*A*S*H," dies of pneumonia at 96.

Harry Morgan (Time Life Pictures/Getty Images)"Television allowed me to kick the Hollywood habit of typing an actor in certain roles," Morgan said, referring to his typical sidekick or sheriff portrayals on the big screen, according to his obituary by The Associated Press. In "December Bride," his first TV series, Morgan played Pete Porter, a perpetually henpecked neighbor. The CBS series lasted from 1954-1959, when he went on to star in his own series, "Pete and Gladys," a spinoff of "December Bride." Demonstrating his diversity as a character actor and comedian, Morgan also starred on "The Richard Boone Show," "Kentucky Jones," and "Dragnet." But it was his role as Colonel Sherman T. Potter on "M*A*S*H" for which Morgan became best known. "'M*A*S*H' was so damned good," Morgan told the AP. "I didn't think they could keep the level so high." Read more


2010: Elizabeth Edwards, U.S. lawyer and health care activist and the wife of former U.S. Sen. John Edwards, dies of metastatic breast cancer at 61.

Elizabeth Edwards (AP Photo)Edwards had focused in recent years on advocating health care reform, often wondering aloud about the plight of those who faced the same of kind of physical struggles she did but without her personal wealth, according to her obituary by The Associated Press. She had also shared with the public the most intimate struggles of her bouts with cancer, writing and speaking about the pain of losing her hair, the efforts to assure her children about their mother's future, and the questions that lingered about how many days she had left to live. Read more




2006: Jeane Kirkpatrick, U.S. ambassador and the first woman to serve as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, dies of congestive heart failure at 79.

Then-Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tennessee, said that Kirkpatrick, who had a reputation as a blunt and acerbic advocate, "stood up for the interests of America while at the U.N., lent a powerful moral voice to the Reagan foreign policy, and has been a source of wise counsel to our nation since leaving the government two decades ago," according to her obituary by The Associated Press. "She will be greatly missed." Read more




2006: Jay "Hootie" McShann, U.S. jazz and swing bandleader, pianist, and singer, dies at 90.

McShann, whose musical career spanned eight decades and earned him accolades from both blues and jazz aficionados, was born James Columbus McShann in Muskogee, Oklahoma. Against the wishes of his parents, he taught himself how to play piano, in part by listening to late-night radio broadcasts featuring pianist and bandleader Earl "Fatha" Hines, according to McShann's obituary by The Associated Press. Read more




2004: Jerry Scoggins, U.S. country singer who sang "The Ballad of Jed Clampett" theme song for the television sitcom "The Beverly Hillbillies," dies at 93.

1996: Eugene Izzi, U.S. crime writer whose books include "The Criminalist," "A Matter of Honor," and "Safe Harbor," dies by suicide at 43.

1994: Jean-Claude Tremblay, Canadian NHL player and five-time winner of the Stanley Cup, dies of kidney cancer at 55.

1985: Potter Stewart, 94th U.S. Supreme Court justice, dies at 70.

1985: Robert Graves, English writer, poet, and translator whose works include "King Jesus" and "I, Claudius," dies at 90.

1980: Darby Crash, U.S. punk rock musician, dies at 22 of an intentional heroin overdose.

1975: Thornton Wilder, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and playwright who wrote "The Bridge of San Luis Rey," dies at 78.

1970: Rube Goldberg, Pulitzer Prize-winning U.S. cartoonist, dies at 87.

1967: House Peters Sr., British-born U.S. actor of the silent screen known as the Star of a Thousand Emotions, dies at 87.

1962: Kirsten Flagstad, Norwegian opera singer and Wagnerian soprano dubbed the Voice of the Century, dies of bone marrow cancer at 67.

1902: Thomas Nast, German-born U.S. political cartoonist who drew a modern version of Santa Claus as well as the elephant that symbolizes the Republican Party, dies at 62.

1817: William Bligh, British naval officer of "Mutiny on the Bounty" fame, dies at 63.

Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including character actor Eli Wallach.