Deborah Kerr starred in one of the most memorable movie scenes of the 1950s when she embraced Burt Lancaster on a Hawaiian beach, waves crashing around them, in “From Here to Eternity.” We remember Kerr’s life today along with the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.
Deborah Kerr starred in one of the most memorable movie scenes of the 1950s when she embraced Burt Lancaster on a Hawaiian beach, waves crashing around them, in “From Here to Eternity.” The scene helped propel the movie to become one of the American Film Institute’s 100 most romantic films of all time, and it helped earn Kerr an Oscar nomination. Despite five additional nominations, Kerr never won an Oscar, though she won a Golden Globe for her performance in “The King and I” and had the notable achievement of being the oldest Bond Girl when she starred, at 46, in “Casino Royale.” Her other popular movies include “An Affair to Remember” and “Black Narcissus.” We remember Kerr’s life today along with the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.
2017: John Dunsworth, actor who was best known as Mr. Lahey on the comedy series “Trailer Park Boys,” dies at 71.
2014: Tim Hauser, U.S. singer who was a founding member of the Manhattan Transfer, dies at 72.
Hauser founded Manhattan Transfer, who released their debut album in the early 1970s and launched hits such as “Operator” and “The Boy From New York City.” They went on to win multiple pop and jazz Grammy awards. Their critically acclaimed album, 1985’s “Vocalese,” earned a whopping 12 Grammy nominations. Alan Paul, Janis Siegel, and Cheryl Bentyne – who joined in 1978 and replaced Laurel Masse – rounded out the foursome. Read more
2013: Ed Lauter, U.S. actor known best for his role in “The Longest Yard,” dies at 74.
He was the brutal prison guard who was Burt Reynolds’ nemesis in the 1974 comedy-drama “The Longest Yard” and the sleazy gas station attendant in Alfred Hitchcock‘s last film, “The Family Plot,” according to his obituary by The Associated Press. In “Death Wish 3,” he was the violent cop who teams with Charles Bronson‘s vigilante to rid New York City’s streets of criminals, not by incarcerating them but by killing them. More recently, he was the butler to Berenice Bejo’s French ingenue in the 2011 Oscar-winning film “The Artist.” Read more
2011: Dan Wheldon, English race car driver who won two Indy 500 races, dies of injuries sustained in a crash during a race at 33.
Wheldon’s first Indianapolis 500 victory was in 2005 — he passed Danica Patrick with fewer than 10 laps to go that year — and his win at the sport’s most famed race this year was one to particularly savor. It came in perhaps the oddest of fashions, as he was the beneficiary of a huge gaffe by someone else, according to his obituary by The Associated Press. Wheldon was in second place, far back of rookie J.R. Hildebrand approaching the final turn — when Hildebrand lost control and clipped the wall. Wheldon zipped past, and the only lap he led all day at Indianapolis was the last one. He returned to the track the next morning for the traditional photo session with the winner, kissing the bricks as his 2-year-old son Sebastian sat on the asphalt alongside him, and wife, Susie, held their then-2-month-old, Oliver. Read more
2010: Barbara Billingsley, U.S. actress known best for TV’s “Leave It to Beaver” and the comedy film “Airplane!,” dies at 94.
Though “Leave It to Beaver” ended in 1963, it appeared so frequently in syndication that Billingsley had difficulty escaping her image as the sweet 1950s matron. With trouble getting other roles, she took time out of her career to travel the world. Her second wind came when producers took comedic advantage of her wholesome persona to cast her as a jive-talking passenger in the 1982 hit “Airplane!” Read more
2007: Deborah Kerr, Scottish actress who starred in “An Affair To Remember” and “From Here to Eternity,” dies at 86.
Tired of being typecast in serene, ladylike roles, she rebelled to win a release from her MGM contract and get the role of Karen Holmes, the alcoholic, sex-starved Army wife who has a fling with Burt Lancaster in “From Here to Eternity,” according to her obituary by The Associated Press. In 1957, she and Cary Grant played star-crossed lovers who arrange to meet atop the Empire State Building in the enduring — and much-imitated — romance “An Affair To Remember.” Read more
2005: Eugene Gordon Lee, U.S. child actor known for playing Porky in the “Little Rascals” from 1935 until 1939, dies at 71.
2004: Pierre Salinger, U.S. White House press secretary to two presidents, dies at 79.
1997: James A. Michener, U.S. Pulitzer Prize-winning author whose books include “Centennial” and “The Drifters,” dies at 90.
1997: Audra Lindley, U.S. actress known for her role as Mrs. Roper on “Three’s Company” and “The Ropers,” dies at 79.
For the first three seasons of “Three’s Company,” Lindley played the frustrated but friendly landlady to Jack Tripper and crew. She wore a lot of muumuus, frequently took her husband to task for his inattention, and helped “the kids” upstairs hide their unconventional living arrangement. When Lindley and her TV husband, played by Norman Fell, left “Three’s Company” for the short-lived spinoff “The Ropers,” we sure missed them. Read more
1996: Jason Bernard, U.S. actor who appeared in the TV series “The White Shadow” and “Cagney & Lacey,” dies at 58.
1992: Shirley Booth, U.S. actress who played the lead role on the TV sitcom “Hazel,” dies at 94.
1990: Art Blakey, U.S. jazz drummer and Grammy Hall of Fame member, dies of cancer at 71.
1989: Cornel Wilde, Hungarian actor and director who starred in “A Song To Remember,” dies at 77.
1978: Dan Dailey, U.S. actor and dancer who starred in the movie “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” dies at 62.
The Gene Krupa Orchestra debuted in Atlantic City 1938 to instant success. In its review, the magazine Metronome gushed, “Gene is now firmly entrenched at the helm of a swing outfit that’s bound to be recognized very shortly as one of the most potent bits of catnip to be fed to the purring public that generally passes as America’s swing contingent. … Throughout the evening the kids and kittens shagged, trucked, jumped up and down, and down and up, and often yelled and screamed at the series of solid killer-dillers.” Read more
1972: Leo G. Carroll, English actor who played TV roles in “Topper” and “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.,” dies at 79.
1972: Hale Boggs, U.S. congressman from Louisiana, dies in a plane crash at 58.
1937: Jean de Brunhoff, French writer-illustrator known for creating Babar the elephant, dies of tuberculosis at 37.
1793: Marie Antoinette, queen of France from 1774 to 1792, is executed during the French Revolution at 37.