Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Daily Death Declaration: 27th March 2017

Which notable people have felt the heavy hand of the Grim Reaper yesterday? Read on to find out...

Mizu Ahmed (63)- 17th November 1953- 27th March 2017

Mizu Ahmed
The Bangladeshi actor, famed for playing villains, died yesterday of a heart attack,

Arthur Blythe (76)- 5th July 1940- 27th March 2017

Arthur Blythe
The American saxophonist died yesterday from Parkinson's Disease.

Clem Curtis (76)- 28th November 1940- 27th March 2017

Clem Curtis

Experiencing chart success with Baby Now That I've Found You, Curtis was the some time lead singer of The Foundations- who would go on to have hits such as Build Me Up Buttercup. On his arrival in England at age 15, he found work as an interior decorator and became an accomplished boxer. However, it was singing that really took his heart. He continued to perform until his death, appearing at Butlin's and Warner Hotel Resorts. He died from lung cancer.

Noreen Fraser (63)- 6th December 1953- 27th March 2017

Noreen Fraser

American TV producer and co-founder of charity Stand Up To Cancer.

Eduard Mudrik (77)- July 18th 1939- 27th March 2017

Eduard Mudrik

A Soviet International footballer, who starred for Dynamo Moscow.

Arun Sarma (85)- 3rd November 1931- 27th March 2017

Multi award winning Indian playwright.

David Storey (83)- 13th July 1933- 27th March 2017

David Storey

The son of a coal miner, Storey was educated at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Wakefield. Whilst studying at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, he also played Rugby for Leeds Rugby League Football Club. His passion however, was writing, for which he received the Booker Prize for his novel Saville in 1976. His novels Radcliffe and Pasmore were short listed for the same prize.

Here endeth the Daily Death Declaration for Monday 27th March 2017.

Monday, 27 March 2017

Daily Death Declaration, 26th March 2017- including Brian Oldfield and Alessandro Alessandroni

On Sunday, March 26th, 2017, the following notable people have heard the clang of St Peter's Pearly gates... roll on the Daily Death Declaration.

Alessandro Alessandroni (92)- 18 March 1925 – 26 March 2017

Italian Composer and Musician

Italian composer, musician and accomplished whistler. He whistled on the Hollywood films A Fistful of Dollars and Once Upon A Time in The West.

Mai Dantsig (86)- April 27, 1930 – March 26, 2017

Mai Dantsig, Artist

Belarusian artist.

Jimmy Dotson (83)- 9th October 1933- 26th March, 2017 

Jimmy Dotson- American Musician

American Musician.

Todd Frohwirth (54)- 28th September 1962- 26th March, 2017

Todd Frohwirth- American Baseball Player

American Baseball player who split his career between Philadelphia Phillies, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Redsox and California Angels. He died of stomach cancer.

Vladimir Kazachyonok (64)- 6th September 1952- 26th March 2017

Vladimir Kazachyonok- Russian footballer

Russian footballer and football coach. He starred for Zenit Leningrad and Dynamo Moscow, whilst representing his country twice. At the time of his death, he was the Academy Director of Zenith St. Petersburg.

Brian Oldfield (71)- 1st June 1945- 26th March 2017

Brian Oldfield- American Shotputter

American Shotputter. He made the rotating style of throwing popular. Once featured on the front page of Sports Illustrated magazine and would wear flamboyant outfits to unnerve his opponents. He would frequently smoke cigarettes between throws to "show he couldn't be beaten, even when smoking". Injuries sustained during his career forced him to use a wheelchair in later life.

Pavel Vlad (80)- 6th June 1936- 26th March 2017

Pavel Vlad- Moldovan academic

Moldovan academic.

Here ends the Daily Death Declaration for 26th March 2017.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Colin Dexter

Trail blazing crime novelist Colin Dexter dies at age 86. 

Colin Dexter: 29th September 1930- 21st March 2017

Colin Dexter, arguably the godfather of modern crime writing, created and wrote one of Britain's favourite police detective series: Inspector Morse. Although he was sweet and softly spoken, he mirrored the enigmatic Morse with his own interests; he loved real ale, Wagner, English Literature and of course, cryptic crosswords. Dexter rarely mentioned the fact that he was English Crossword Champion "six or seven times", such was the weight of his intellect.

Norman Colin Dexter was born in Stamford, Lincolnshire, the son of a taxi driver and small garage owner. After school, he read Classics at Christ's College Cambridge. Prior to this, he served his National Service with the Royal Corps of Signals where he, ironically enough, used Morse code. However, this was not where he thought of the name of his famous, diminutive detective. After completing his degree, he embarked upon a career in teaching, which unfortunately, from which he had to retire in 1966 following the early onset of deafness. However, teaching's loss was crime drama's gain...

The first scribblings took place on a family holiday in Pwlheli, where the first few paragraphs were dragged kicking and screaming in to the world. "I thought if I did a page a day for 360 days of the year, the rest would soon follow..." 13 novels later, his musings were true. The honour for inspiring the character of Morse came actually from a fellow crossword compiler, Jeremy Morse, and Dexter himself often took the names of the villains from the winners of the Observer's Azed crossword.

The popularity of his novels led to more success, this time on the small screen as Morse was powerfully brought to life by the wonderful Jaguar-driving John Thaw, solving murders within the picturesque city of Oxford, which became the crime (novel) capital of Europe. In Hitchcockian style, Dexter himself appeared in many of the episodes. 

Even in 2012, Dexter still had a role to play in the Morse story. He was a consultant on the TV programmes Lewis and Endeavour- spawned from the original TV series. However, he did state that the character of Morse would never be brought back to life. 

On 21st March 2017, his publisher Macmillan wrote that it was with "great sadness that Macmillan announces the death of Colin Dexter who died peacefully at his home in Oxford this morning".    

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Martin McGuinness

Vile Putrid Terrorist... or Purposeful Peacemaker? Martin McGuinness dies aged 66

Martin McGuinness- 23.05.50- 21.03.17

Never before have we seen a man of two stark opposites than Martin McGuinness. McGuinness, who ruined countless families through ruthless and disgusting terrorist acts, was also one of the key architects of the Good Friday Agreement which solidified the Northern Irish Peace Process. A larger dichotomy has surely never been seen before. 

James Martin Pacelli McGuinness was born on 23rd May 1950, in Derry, Northern Ireland. After leaving school aged 15, he joined the IRA and by the tender age of 21, was its deputy leader in Derry. This period oversaw Bloody Sunday, where Civil Rights protesters were killed by members of the 1st Battalion, parachute regiment. In 1973, he was arrested near a car containing a considerable amount of explosives and 5000 rounds of ammunition. He refused to acknowledge the court and was imprisoned for six months. 

Even though he claimed to have left the IRA in 1974, he was largely thought to have masterminded countless acts of terrorism over the decades, destroying countless families in the process- acts that cannot be ever forgotten about nor forgiven. Even as far as 2005, McGuinness was suspected, along with Gerry Adams and Martin Ferris, of being part of the 7 man IRA Army Council, an association he continued to deny.

Despite McGuiness' suspected links to terrorism, he was nonetheless archetypal in securing peace in Northern Ireland through the Good Friday Agreement. The more cynical amongst us would say that he was pragmatic over this issue, realising IRA funding from the IRA was drying up and he understood this was the only avenue left open to him. In January 2017, he was diagnosed with amyloidosis, an illness which attacks the vital organs. He died on 21st March, 2017, aged 66. 

Monday, 20 March 2017

Chuck Berry

Godfather and Creator of Rock 'n' Roll blighted by money troubles and brushes with the law...

Chuck Berry: Born: 18th October, 1926. Died: 18th March, 2017 aged 90.

Credited with transporting black roots music into the bedrooms of every American teenager of the 1950s, Chuck Berry's legacy needs no introduction. His four-bar guitar introduction and the rebellious nature of his lyrics mirrored the changing face of not only music, but the shifting state of America in general. Spawning hits such as Roll Over Beethoven, Sweet Little Sixteen and his epoch-making Johnny B.Goode, his music crossed the colour barriers taking advantage of a middle class America who were craving more.

I was going to be famous if it killed me...

Despite the fact that Berry influenced many of the greats such as The Beatles, Beach Boys and notably the Rolling Stones, his career was blighted by frequent brushes with the law, and major financial struggles. His crimes included transporting a minor across state borders for immoral purposes, marijuana possession and oddly enough, fitting a camera into the ladies' restroom in his restaurant in Missouri. A difficult character off stage, he would often demand payment for his concerts upfront. He served a 100 day prison sentence for tax evasion.

Although perhaps this colourful nature of his character made Berry the man he was. What legends are not blighted by some kind of personality disorder and strange character trait? Berry will certainly be remembered for his inspirational music rather than his dalliances with the law. Another colourful god of Rock 'n' Roll, John Lennon said of Berry, "If you tried to give Rock 'n' Roll another name, you could call it Chuck Berry". Praise indeed. 

As the years crept relentlessly on, Berry continued to perform and tour. In 2008, he embarked upon a European Tour, and was still on the road at the age of 87. The recipe for his success? Berry put it down to the fact that he "was going to be famous if it killed me". Charles Edward Anderson (Chuck) Berry died from natural causes aged 90 in St. Charles, Missouri.