Good riddance to 2021! Before we say goodbye let’s remember those for whom we have fond memories.
There was 106 military personnel and 445 police officers lost their lives defending our freedom.
At Iwo Jima, USMC Col. Dave Severence, 102, ordered his men to raise the flag on Mount Suribachi. Harry Beal, 90, was the first Navy Seal. Marie Tippit, 92, was the widow of Dallas police officer JD Tippit who was murdered by Lee Harvey Oswald. Besides playing Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show, Betty Lynn, 95, worked with the USO in the China Burma India Theater singing for homesick troops.
Movie Men: As the jilted Junior, Mike Henry, 76, rode with Sheriff Buford T. Justice in Smokey And The Bandit. Ian Faith, 79, managed Spinal Tap. Yaphet Kotto, 81, the wicked Dr. Kanga in Live And Let Die. Art Metrano, 84, served as Capt. Mauser in the Police Academy movies.
Ladies of the silver screen: Marion Ramsey, 73, was the squeaky voiced trainee Hooks In Police Academy. In the song America from West Side Story, Yvonne Wilder, 84, ad libbed the line “I know you do.”
Men of the small screen: John Reilly, 95, was Sean Donely on General Hospital. Peter Mark Rickman, 93, was the levelheaded chief counsel on Dynasty. Richard Gilliand, 71, was Mary Jo’s boyfriend on Designing Women. James Hampton, 84, was Pvt. Dobbs on F-Troop. Norman Lloyd, 105, was Dr. Auslander on St. Elsewhere. Mark York, 55, was a wheelchair bound building manager on The Office. Clarence Robinson III, 81, was Linc Hayes on The Mod Squad. Felix Silla, 84, spoke gibberish and waddled around as Cousin It on the Addams Family. Charlie Robinson, 75, and Markie Post, 70, both starred in Night Court. As Archangel, Alex Cord, 88, guided Air Wolf. Gavin O’Herlihy, 70, was Chuck Cunningham on Happy Days.
Women of the small screen: Homemaker Pat Loud, 94, shared her struggles in the reality TV American Family. Gloria Henry, 98, was the mom to Dennis The Menace. Arlene Golonka, 85, was Sam’s girlfriend on Mayberry RFD. Jane Withers, 95, was Josephine the plumber for Comet cleaner. Mira Furlan, 65, was the scientist Danielle Rosseau on Lost.
Musicians we lost include Lloyd Price, 88, who had Personality. Jimmie Rogers, 87, longed for his Honeycomb. Shock G, 57, taught us The Humpty Dance. John Davis, 66, was the real voice of Milli Vanilli. Joey Ambrose, 87, wailed his sax on Rock Around The Clock. Tom T. Hall, 85, loved “Little baby ducks, old pick-up trucks.” Jay Black, 82, implored us to Come A Little Bit Closer. James Purify, 76, opined I’m Your Puppet. Along with the Pacemakers, Gerry Marsden, 78, advised
Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying. As part of the Vogues, Don Miller, 80, sang about his 5 O’Clock World. Jill Corey, 85, urged us to Love Me To Pieces. Poco singer Rusty Young, 75, professed his Crazy Love. We listened to their tunes on cassette tapes in-vented by Lou Ottens, 94.
Voices stilled. Samuel E. Wright, 74, Sebastian in The Little Mermaid. Paul Soles, 90, Hermey, the elf who wanted to be a dentist in Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer. Mark Elliott, 81, projected en- thusiasm for Disney home videos. Alan Kalter, 78, announced the Late Show With David Letterman.
From the depths of Science Fiction: Barbara Shelley, 88, tried to escape The Village Of The Damned. As a ghoul, Marilyn Eastman, 87, famously ate a bug from a tree in Night Of The Living Dead. Lou Cutell, 91, was the bald, pasty, pointy-eared nefarious Martian commander Dr. Nadir in Frankenstein Meets The Space Monster.
Children’s Entertainers include Mark Wilson, 91, who introduced TV viewers to The Magic Land Of Allakazam. John Paragon, 66, was the genie Jambi in Pee-Wee’s Playhouse. Billie Hayes, 96, Witchiepoo on H. R. Pufnstuf. Joanne Cameon, 70, was the super heroine Isis. Joanne Rogers, 92, played the piano for Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood. Sonny Fox, 95, hosted Wonderama. Norton Juster, 91, invited us aboard the Phantom Tollbooth.
Leaving the newsroom: Brian Christie CNN (age unknown). Neal Conan, 71, NPR. CNN correspondent Bryan Monroe, 55; he had the last interview with Michael Jackson. Roger Mudd, 93, NBC. Journalist Jay Barbee, 87, witnessed 166 manned launches from Friendship 7 to the last mission of the Space Shuttle Atlantis.
Their recreation enriched our lives: Masayuki Uemura, 78, creator of the Nintendo Entertainment System. Richard Klamer, 99, creator of the Game Of Life. Bruce Meyers, 94, leapt on the beaches with his dune buggy. Greg Noll, 84, pioneered big wave surfing.
Delighting our palate: Wayne Kent Taylor, 65, Texas Roadhouse. Peter Buck, 90, Subway. Aaron Brody, 90, frozen fish sticks.
Inspirations: Frank Shankwitz, 77, co-founder of the Make A Wish Foundation. Dick Hoyt, 80, ran the Boston Marathon for four decades pushing his severely handicapped son Rick. Southern women humorist Jeanne Robertson, 77, encouraged us to laugh at ourselves.
Waiting for us on the Rainbow Bridge is Freddy, 8, the world’s tallest dog. Lee Aaker, 77, played Rusty, best friend to Rin Tin Tin. Champ, 13, was President Biden’s German Shepherd.
On November 26, 1975, over Carleton, Michigan, due to an error from an air traffic controller, American Airlines flight 182, a DC-10, was set for a head-on collision with TWA flight 37, a Lockheed 10-11 Tri Star. With a second to spare, American Airlines pilot, Guy Eby, 102, dove sharply and, by 100 feet, avoided a disaster which would have cost 319 lives.
Good night, sir, fly high.