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Delbert Tibbs, who left death row and fought against it, dies at 74

Delbert Tibbs, 74, who in 1974 received a death sentence after he was convicted in Florida of a rape and a murder that he had nothing to do with, but was freed in 1977 when the state Supreme Court reversed his convictions, died of cancer Nov. 23 in Chicago. The case was a cause celebre. Folk singer Pete Seeger wrote a song about him and activist Angela Davis raised money for his defense. He later campaigned to end capital punishment.

Eleanor Parker, 91, who was nominated three times for a best-actress Oscar but whose best-known role was a supporting one, as the marriage-minded baroness in The Sound of Music, died of pneumonia Monday in Palm Springs, Calif. She was called "the woman of a thousand faces" for the range of her roles.

Colin Wilson, 82, a self-educated English writer who at age 24 in 1956 shot to international acclaim with his first book, The Outsider, an erudite meditation on existentialism, alienation and creativity, but who incurred critical disdain for later books about murder, sexual deviance and the occult, died of pneumonia Dec. 5 in Cornwall, England.

Jim Hall, 83, one of the leading jazz guitarists of his generation, whose subtle technique, lyrical sound and introspective approach influenced younger proteges such as Pat Metheny and Bill Frisell, died of heart failure Tuesday in New York.

Joseph Napolitan, 84, a campaign consultant whose use of polling and media advertising heralded the rise of independent strategists over party organizations, died Dec. 2 in Agawam, Mass. He worked for John F. Kennedy's presidential campaign in 1960 and Lyndon B. Johnson's in 1964, and helped Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey stage an eleventh-hour comeback that almost put him in the White House in 1968.

Joe Bihari, 88, who created Modern Music Records with his two brothers, Jules and Saul, recording B.B. King, Etta James, John Lee Hooker, Johnny "Guitar" Watson and other blues legends early in their careers, died Nov. 28 in Los Angeles.

Delbert Tibbs, who left death row and fought against it, dies at 74 12/14/13 [Last modified: Saturday, December 14, 2013 5:33pm]
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