Thursday, December 28, 2006

These are people who died.

[[Pondering the close deaths of Gerald Ford and James Brown this morning, remembering the old “they always go in threes” thing, wondered who else we had lost recently. From Washington Post obits.]]

GERALD RUDOLPH FORD, JR— 93, who became the 38th president of the United States as a result of some of the most extraordinary events in U.S. history and sought to restore the nation's confidence in the basic institutions of government, has died.

JAMES BROWN—The high-energy Godfather of Soul who left his signature beat on funk, R&B, disco and rap and electrified generations with his riveting onstage performances, died early yesterday at Emory Crawford Long Hospital in Atlanta. He was 73.

BERTRAM A. “BERT” POWERS— 84, the president of the old typographers union in New York who led his guild through a grinding 114-day strike in 1962-63 over the transition to automated typesetting, died Dec. 23.

JOSEPH BARBERA— 95, who with his partner, William Hanna, created some of the most enduring and beloved animated characters to enliven American film, television and conversation, died Dec. 18 at his home in Los Angeles.

ELIZABETH “LIZZIE” BOLDEN— Recognized as the world’s oldest person, died Dec. 11 in a Memphis nursing home where she had been living for several years. She was 116.

MARTIN NODELL— 91, the creator of Green Lantern, the comic book superhero who uses his magical ring to fight crime, died Dec. 9 at a nursing home in Muskego, Wis.

ROSIE LEE TOMPKINS— 70, whose quilts hung in museums, graced the pages of art magazines and left awestruck critics scrambling to describe them, died Dec. 1 at her home in Richmond, Calif.

JAY MCSHANN— Whose robust, blues-flavored style of jazz piano helped shape the Kansas City sound of the 1930s, died Dec 7th at St. Lukes’s Hospital in Kansas City, Mo. His age is a matter of some dispute, but most reliable sources say he was 90.