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Palle Huld, called real-life model for popular comic-book character

Palle Huld, 98, a Danish actor whose fleet, youthful and highly public circumnavigation of the globe as a cowlicked teenager in 1928 is believed to have inspired the popular comic-book character Tintin, died on Nov. 26 in Copenhagen. Created by the Belgian artist Herge (the pseudonym of Georges Remi), Tintin was a snub-nosed teenage reporter who traveled the world with his trusty dog, Snowy, doing good deeds and foiling bad men.

Elaine Kaufman, 81, who became something of a symbol of New York as the salty den mother of Elaine's, one of the city's best-known restaurants and a second home for almost half a century to writers, actors, athletes and other celebrities, died from complications of emphysema on Dec. 3.

Al Masini, 80, a creator of hit television shows that often focused on glamour and fame, among them Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous and Entertainment Tonight, the breezy show business news program that has run for 29 years, died of cancer on Nov. 29 in Honolulu.

Sri Daya Mata, 96, who for more than five decades was the leader of one of the most influential Hindu groups in the United States and an ardent advocate of the healing power of meditation, died on Nov. 30 in Los Angeles. From 1955 until her death, Sri Daya Mata — her name means "true mother of compassion" in Sanskrit — was the president and spiritual leader of the Self-Realization Fellowship/Yogoda Satsanga Society of India.

Maria Esther Gatti de Islas, 92, a Uruguayan teacher who became a human rights activist while helping to find people lost to political repression in South America during the "dirty wars," died on Nov. 5 in Montevideo.

Garry Gross, 73, a fashion photographer for 30 years who was best known for controversial photos of an unclothed 10-year-old Brooke Shields, died of natural causes on Nov. 30 in New York. Though he earned his reputation as a celebrity image-maker — his pictures graced the covers of albums by Whitney Houston and Lou Reed — in 2002 he switched careers and became certified as a dog trainer.

Hugues Cuenod, a Swiss tenor who dazzled critics in his Metropolitan Opera debut a quarter-century ago, not only because he sang extremely well but also because he was nearly 85 at the time, the oldest person to sing there before or since, died Monday in Vevey, Switzerland. He was 108.

James Moody, an exuberant presence in jazz for more than six decades whose improvised version of I'm in the Mood for Love became a surprise hit in the 1950s and launched a form of music called vocalese, died Dec. 9 at a hospice in San Diego of pancreatic cancer. He was 85. His primary instrument was the tenor saxophone, and he was also part of the vanguard of musicians who created a new, complex style of jazz known as bebop.

Thomas Ahrens, a California Institute of Technology geophysicist who pioneered the academic use of shock waves to study minerals under high temperatures and pressures such as those found at the center of the Earth, died Nov. 24 at his home in Pasadena, Calif. He was 74. The cause of death was not revealed.

John Leslie, an award-winning adult film actor and director who appeared in more than 300 movies during porn's so-called Golden Age in the 1970s and 80s, died Dec. 5 of an apparent heart attack at his Mill Valley, Calif., home, his friends said. He he was 65.

Palle Huld, called real-life model for popular comic-book character 12/11/10 [Last modified: Monday, November 7, 2011 1:40pm]

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