Doris Eaton Travis, 106, the last of the legendary Ziegfeld Follies chorus girls who wore elaborate costumes for the series of lavish Broadway theatrical productions in the early 1900s, died of an aneurysm on Tuesday (May 11, 2010) in Commerce, Mich. She continued to work long after her Follies days ended, with annual appearances on Broadway, a small role in the Jim Carrey movie Man on the Moon and a memoir, The Days We Danced: The Story of My Theatrical Family from Florenz Ziegfeld to Arthur Murray and Beyond.
Dr. John M. Peters, 75, a pioneering University of Southern California epidemiologist who played a crucial role in demonstrating the short- and long-term effects of air pollutants on the health of children, died of pancreatic cancer May 6 at his home in San Marino, Calif. He was the driving force in creating the Children's Health Study, which has followed nearly 1,800 Southern California children since 1993 to determine how their health was affected by air pollution.
Dave Fisher, 69, the lead singer of the Highwaymen, the popular 1960s folk group whose hit song Michael, Row the Boat Ashore soared to the top of the music charts, died of a bone marrow disease May 7 at his home in Rye, N.Y. Other hits followed, including Cotton Fields and The Gypsy Rover, as did appearances on Ed Sullivan's and Johnny Carson's shows.
Frank Frazetta, 82, the celebrated comic artist and illustrator whose ax-wielding muscular warriors, scantily clad heroines and ferocious beasts of prey graced numerous science fiction and fantasy novels, died Monday (May 10, 2010) in Fort Myers after a stroke. He was perhaps best known for the cover illustrations to the paperback reissues of Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian series and Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan and Pellucidar series.
Bree O'Mara, 42, a South African novelist, was among those killed in the crash of a Libyan airliner on Wednesday (May 12, 2010). She had been flying to London to sign a British publishing deal for her second novel. The Johannesburg daily the Citizen and publisher 30 Degrees South co-sponsor a contest for unpublished writers that she won in 2007 for Home Affairs, her first novel. South African readers vote for the winner based on synopses of unpublished work.
Edward Uhl, 92, who helped invent the bazooka during World War II, died May 9 in Oxford, Md., of complications from a stroke he suffered three years earlier. In 1942, as an Army first lieutenant with an engineering degree, he helped develop a shoulder-fired rocket launcher nicknamed the bazooka because it resembled a tube-shaped musical instrument.
Giuliana Coen Camerino, 90, designer of handbags carried by Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor and others, died Monday (May 10, 2010) in Venice, Italy. She is credited with making handbags a fashion item. Her distinctive and timeless bags would typically sport brass clasps created by Venetian craftsman who make accents for gondolas or be made of velvet woven on antique looms.
Maj. Gen. John L. Fugh, 75, who was the Army's top uniformed lawyer in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War and then was a liaison between China and major corporations, died of a heart attack Tuesday (May 11, 2010) in Bethesda, Md. He was the first Chinese-American general officer in the U.S. Army and a Beijing native who left China with his family after the communist takeover in 1949.
Bob Mercer, 65, who was managing director of EMI Music in Britain in the 1970s and most recently was chief executive of the Now That's What I Call Music! venture that releases a bestselling series of hit-single compilation albums, died of lung cancer May 5 in Los Angeles.