Friday, February 23, 2018

Martin Fleischmann, seeker of cold fusion, dies at 85

Martin Fleischmann, 85, a British chemist who stunned the world in 1989 by announcing that he had achieved nuclear fusion in a glass bottle, died on Aug. 3 in Tisbury, England. When other scientists could not replicate the achievement, "cold fusion" was labeled junk science.

Nellie Gray, 88, the founder of the March for Life, the annual antiabortion demonstration that for nearly four decades has drawn tens of thousands of activists to Washington, was found dead in her home on Monday.

John J. Phelan Jr., 81, an unflappable Wall Street veteran and a former chairman of the New York Stock Exchange who helped assuage widespread fear during the October 1987 international stock market crisis and who was credited with advancing the use of computer technology by the Big Board in the 1980s, died of prostate cancer, on Aug. 4 in New York.

Joe Kubert, 85, a titan among comic-book artists whose artwork included Tarzan, the flying super-hero Hawkman and the World War II infantryman Sgt. Rock, died of multiple myeloma on Aug. 12 in Morristown, N.J.

David Rakoff, 47, a frequent contributor to This American Life on public radio and a prizewinning humorist whose mordant, neurotic essays examined everything from his surreal stint portraying Sigmund Freud in a Christmastime shop-window display to his battles with cancer, died on Aug. 9 in New York.

Carlo Rambaldi, 86, a special-effects virtuoso who won two Academy Awards for his work on Steven Spielberg's E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Ridley Scott's Alien and a special achievement award from the Motion Picture Academy for John Guillermin's 1976 remake of King Kong, died on Aug. 10 in Italy.

R. Peter Straus, 89, a New York media executive who served as director of the Voice of America in the late 1970s and who earlier led a court battle that resulted in the reapportionment of many state legislatures, died of a heart ailment on Aug. 6 in New York. Through his second marriage, he was also the stepfather of Monica Lewinsky.

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