James Gandolfini's unfortunate and premature passing made me wonder:
What celebrity's death had you truly clutching your pearls and saying "MARY"???
I guess nothing was more shocking than Elvis
Yes on Whitney.
Diana, Michael Jackson
I think Diana went out in style. It happened quickly and she'll always be remembered as young and beautiful.
We should all be so lucky.
Most people I knew and thinly veiled media blind items were predictng her early death at least a few years before it happened.
Hell, an astronaut currently in orbit could see that coming.
Donna Summer was my idol, though I had a lot of problems with her personality. I didn't worship her, she just had my favorite singing voice. So I refused to cry when she died because I didn't know her personally, but I was greatly affected by her death anyway. I was like a zombie for 3 days. I usually grocery shop in the middle of the night, to avoid the crowds, but when I went to the store shortly after she died, just a block away, I was so out of it I was worried I'd have an accident. Even though no one else was on the road. Very, very spaced out.
"What celebrity's death had you truly clutching your pearls and saying "MARY"???"
MARY KAY ASH!!
Her mascara was pouring down my cheeks.
Donna Summer for me too. Now, that was one death that just seemed to come out of nowhere. There was no news she was ill - the family kept if very quiet - so when I booted up my laptop that morning and the front page of CNN was 'Donna Summer Dead' I was speechless. Could.Not.Believe.It.
Whitney's death and even Michael Jackson's death did not shock me at all. I was frankly surprised they lived as long as they did.
Princess Diana's death is still the biggest one of my lifetime. That one was genuinely shocking. I think people who are too young to have been adults at the time (I was 21) don't realize how fucking FAMOUS Diana was in her lifetime. It wasn't like the kind of fame idiots like the Kardashians have today - it was on a different level and really doesn't exist anymore. People were actually devastated when she died - I can't think of anyone who would provoke that kind of reaction in 2013.
Rebecca Shaffer (Hollywood "It-Girl" who was shot on her apartment front porch by a celeb stalker in 1989)
Diana and Michael Jackson.
I was crushed to heart about Diana.
River Phoneix. Even my clueless ass knew he looked drugged out in the year prior to his death, plus he had been fronting his vegan act for so long I was confused (and young). That he died right on Sunset, on the sidewalk next to the fucking Viper Room, with his poor brother on a pay phone trying to help him. I felt very sad for both brothers.
River for sure, vivid memories of him
Then Diana. I still they did her in.
Heath Ledger - I had to break the news to the film editor on the paper I was working on as he had to write the obit
The Gandolfini one has unnerved me a bit. Both he and I were born on the same day (9/18/61). It does underscore that one can go at anytime.
Phil Hartman. So many SNL cast member in the past 10 years seem to be imitating his shtick.
Diana, by far.
And gor some weird reason, Jim Henson. I still don't understand why that one got me.
In addition to Natalie Wood, I'd add Sharon Tate. The circumstances and outcome (capture and trial of the Manson crew) was so shocking.
I was in college when Judy Garland died. It really didn't suprise me. Given her history of drung abuse, it seemed like a matter of time.
One more that really bothered me as I had a personal connection, actress Jill Haworth a few years ago. She wasn't well known. Hadn't done much of anything since the 60's when she played Sally Bowles in CABARET but I adored her. Had been in contact with her for a few years before she died.
Freddie Prinze's death creeped me out as a kid. Partly because the news that he shot himself in the head came out at least a full day before the news that he had died. It was weird knowing that he would die but that he hadn't yet, especially as he was so young and apparently successful.
Rudolph Valentino. I was speechless.
Yeah, I have to agree with Phil Hartman and Jim Henson. Both so unexpected and too young.
Heath Ledger and Michael Jackson. I was in a movie theater when my friends' phones started lighting up about it. Very weird.
Diana, for sure. The biggest, most shocking, and most unexpected.
To me, the deaths of Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston were not a shock at all. I'd been hearing drug rumors for years, I had to keep from telling people "I told you so".
Heath Ledger. Very unexpected and quite a shock. It was also the first time someone I was a fan of who died was younger than me so it felt even more premature.
[quote]I was in a movie theater when my friends' phones started lighting up about it.
Your friends should have died too, for not turning off their phones in a fucking movie theater. Assholes.
Why would anyone be shocked that James Gandolfini died? He was a fat fuck who always looked like he could drop at any second from a massive coronary. And he did. SAD sad sad but not in the least shocking.
R17 poor guy at 0:35 trying not to laugh!
River, Heath, Brittany Murphy. I'm always shocked when a young person dies suddenly. It's shocking.
How the fuck is James Gandolfini's death shocking?
He was obese and had a coke problem.
In other words: A waddling heart attack.
Natasha Richardson. So sad.
Diana's death was the most shocking death ever, including Jesus'.
Sort of obscure, but the suicide of the drummer from the band Lush surprised me. He was young. It ended the band.
Diana was a huge shock and I was in my teens then. Brit here and she was always on the front page of the papers.
People like Whitney and Michael Jackson were drug abusers and a bit older so it wasn't that shocking. Same as James Gandolfini.
Looking at young drug abusers like Lindsay Lohan, I expect someone like her to also go out around that age..
Have to add that Oscar Pistorius killing his girlfriend was a big shock as well.
Freddie Prinze. I didn't know much about Hollywood and had no idea he had a serious drug problem. It was really pretty depressing because he was really pretty young and so was I.
I would guess that Jay Leno will go, after his show is over.
It was so freakin' avoidable.
If only he'd realized blanks were dangerous.
If only the prop guy -- or whoever -- had taken the gun away from him in between takes.
Of course, JEH was gorgeous and built, but he also seemed extremely friendly. He often had the patience of a saint in dealing with that know-it-all kid on Voyagers! (as TV kids are of course.)
He just seemed really...nice.
Abraham Lincoln's death really shocked me. I was already a grown woman when it happened, but it was sad nevertheless.
Diana, by far. I had zero respect for her, was sick of the manipulated photo ops and bored by the whiny 'poor me' rhetoric but R11 is right - that level of fame doesn't happen anymore and when a person like that dies, young and unexpected, it is shocking. There's a gap in the media, they don't know what to do so they turn on each other.
In the months before she died she was pilloried in the press for her very public fuck-them-then-stalk-them behaviour, her needy attention whoring and her batshit obsessive cuntishness, suddenly in death she's an angel. And so many years on people still obsess about her.
You just need to count how many "she was killed on Philips orders" conspiracy crackpots there are on DL. Like her or loathe her, you couldn't ignore her.
Barbara Billingsley. She's the reason I have pearls to clutch.
[quote]In the months before she died she was pilloried in the press for her very public fuck-them-then-stalk-them behaviour, her needy attention whoring and her batshit obsessive cuntishness
Details, please. I never paid a bit of attention to her between her wedding and her death.
Two in the 80s: Tennessee Williams and Andy Warhol. Both were accidents. And then in 2003-2004, three deaths surprised me by taking place around the same time: Susan Sontag, Edward Said, and Jacques Derrida. And then with Norman Mailer and Gore Vidal gone it truly is the end of an era.
Pete Duel - this was before the internet, so people didn't know how troubled he was.
John F. Kennedy Jr. I idolized that man. He was a demigod to me. I was stunned, and then truly mourned, for days.
R49 it's really easy to Google this stuff for yourself, why not start with Oliver Hoare or Barry Mannakee or Will Carling, none of their wives were impressed with Diana's behaviour, specially the 300 calls a day to Olive Hoare.
JFK, Jr. all the way. And Diana.
The death of Madonna's career left me devastated
Whitney and Amy Winehouse. Not because they were unexpected, but because even as messed-up as both of them were, they were both so damned talented. Something that stuck with me after Whitney died was something I heard Al Sharpton say about her: that despite all of her personal problems, the thing that people would remember was her voice.
On a completely different tack, Lisa "Left-Eye" Lopes and Aaliyah. Those were just so sudden and violent.
The Voice of the Night
R17, your link didn't work for me so I am linking a thread about it.
Many great ones already mentioned, but some are definitely missing:
Andy Whitfield. I knew he was ill, but there were so few details about him after his relapse that I prayed he'd recover. He was truly a beautiful man, inside and out.
Brian Bianchini, Murilo Rezende, and Ambrose Olsen. Insanely hot super models who blazed brilliantly for a second and then snuffed out.
Mark Frankel. Finally reaching his stride and then lost his life in a tragic accident.
John John Kennedy, Diana, and, though everyone, including me, saw it coming, Amy Winehouse. They all had me muted and stunned for days.
That's true about Left-Eye. And Aaliyah's death really made me angry...arrogance and stupidity caused that crash, it makes me want to strangle the idiots even now.
Most celebrity deaths are surprising... Diana's was a shock. It was epic. I doubt there was such an extreme, mass reaction since Kennedy. Maybe Elvis. But deaths like Diana's, in terms of the reach and endurance of the public reaction, really don't happen very often if you measure it by how quickly everybody gets on with real life again... Diana and Kennedy, those lingered compared to most. While Soprano's death is a surprise, it isn't lingering.
Joe strummer, Left Eye, Adam Yauch
The death of Princess Diana just shocked me to the core. I cried when it was announced she passed away.
I was stunned also when Kurt Cobain killed himself. Just five months before, I passed on seeing Nirvana in concert one night because I was busy studying for an exam. Damn!
[quote]That's true about Left-Eye.
The thing about Left-Eye's death that still gets me into MARY! territory is remember that after she died, T-Boz and Chilli called into TRL for an interview, and they were both obviously so destroyed over what had happened, they could hardly speak. It was clear that whatever their problems, the three of them obviously loved each other very much.
Then when the album they had been working on when she died came out, the video for the first single ended with a shot of cartoon versions of the three of them hugging.
I know, I know, MARY!
The Voice of the Night
Gandolfini's death didn't surprise anyone in my house. He obviously was sick and recently had looked like his head was going to explode. My partner predicted it in October when we saw him.
But predictability isn't the only marker for a shock. I'm still not over Divine's death - I can't assimilate it.
John Lennon, because it was so brutally stupid. For once the bitch couldn't push him out of the way to get her face in front of people? But since his talent was burned out (that last piece of shit - Double Fantasy - was an appropriate last gasp) I got over it.
Jackie Onassis, Robert Kennedy, John Kennedy Jr. (I was young enough when JFK died to watch all the coverage, but I didn't fully understand it. RFK's death made it feel like the ground under us collapsed and hell had come to Earth. Jackie's death just seemed wrong. John Jr's seemed absurd and horribly wrong. On the other hand, his wife's death - um - didn't resonate with that sort of feeling.)
R18 managed to make it all about her, didn't she?
Selena. Most of America didn't know who she was, but she was much known and beloved in the Hispanic community, especially Mexican-Americans. I was only 15 when she died in 1995. It was shocking not only because she was young (23) and it so unexpected, but because of how it happened: The president of her fan club elbowed her way into the family's graces and befriended Selena and almost became obsessed with her. She also started embezzling from the boutiques she was put in charge to manage. When she was found out she decided to take Selena out so that nobody else could have her. *shiver*
That was creepy, R75. Was the killer in love with her, lezzie style?
What celebrity's death had you truly clutching your pearls and saying "MARY"???
It's yet to happen, and I don't see it ever happening.
Surprised and somewhat saddened, sure. Then I get over it by bedtime and life goes on.
A presidential assassination would do it to me, but no celebrity has that much influence on me.
R76. she has denied it in interviews, but the people who knew her and Selena say she acted more like a stalker than a friend. Selena's fashion designer said that when Selena would leave the boutique, Yolanda (that's her name) would say how much she missed her already, and the designer was like, "She just left!" She also had a shrine to Selena in her apartment and became almost possessive of her, to the point that she wanted to control who got to see Selena and so forth, her family notwithstanding. Yolanda was also never married nor involved with any men. In fact, she didn't seem to have any other friends. Selena became her life.
The deaths of musicians don't faze me much. They're usually so self-destructive that it's never a surprise when one of them dies suddenly, especially when they've been drug addicts or alcoholics for many years.
I was shocked when Jim Henson died. He died so quickly and unexpectedly, of a disease that can kill rapidly if not caught in time. He was just in his early fifties when he died; so tragic. He took some cloth puppets and made an entertainment empire out of them. His death was a great loss to the world.
I was amazed when I heard Heath Ledger had died. So young, only 28. His death was a stupid accident; he was sick and run down and took a bunch of powerful medications all at once. I guess he thought his body could handle it. It couldn't. If he'd lived he would have gone on to have a long, successful career.
Gandolfini's death came right out of the blue. He was an overweight guy who'd had his problems with drugs, but I don't think anybody would have predicted that he'd drop dead of a heart attack at 51.
You just never know, do you.
Yet Helen Lawson still lives.
Hold up. Gandalf died?!
Sharon Tate. I was 8. But it shocked my parents.
Aw r58. Poor Kristy. I always thought that was a senseless and tragic accident but only read in recent years that she apparently died saving one of her kids from being hit by the boat. Rest her soul.
IA with all of the above and will toss in John Belushi. Not that everyone didn't know SNL was fueled by coke but it was the 80s and still shocking that recreational drugs could kill you. Also that he was doing heroin which was still very shocking back then but sadly epidemic these days.
For me the one that affected me the most was Karen Carpenter. I was a huge fan and even though I knew she had been battling her eating disorder for years, I thought since she had supposedly overcame it that she was OK. I was shocked when she died. That was the only celebrity death that actually had me a little teary eyed.
"If only Mama Cass had given Karen Carpenter that sandwich, those two girls would be alive today."
I have a theory that certain celebrities die so that others can take their place...Dorothy Stratten's death gave us Darryl Hannah, River Pheonix's death gave us Brad Pitt, Selina's death gave us Jennifer Lopez, etc...
I won't "MARY!!" a celebrity death, but I'll "MARY!!" R87
R87 - Brad was already coming up when River died, and Brad is several years older than River.
Elizabeth Hartman. But it was one of those situations where she'd been dead for a long time and I saw an old movie and "discovered" her and it was love. Then I looked her up and she was dead and I was shocked silly.
I was 11, but I remember clearly when Marilyn died. She was my first "star" to go Then JFK,Judy, Sal Mineo, Florence Ballard of the Supremes, JFK Junior, Princess Di actually stopped the chatter in French Quarter gay bars. Add to an extent River Phoenix and Heath Ledger.
JFK Jr and Joe Strummer were the big shocks for me personally. Oh, and Kurt Cobain.
I totally agree with R87 about Selena and J. Lo!! Even though J. Lo is puerto rican and Selena was a mexicana. R87 is onto soemthing
Judy Garland's death gave us Britney Spears.
Charlie Chaplin's death gave us Jim Carrey....
I agree with R87 regarding Selena and Jennifer Lopez. J.Lo had been in minor projects in minor roles prior to SELENA, but that movie really catapulted her to stardom. Granted, it received mixed reviews, but the critics considered her the standout and lauded her performance. The film was released in February 1997, but she made quite an impression that she was nominated for a Golden Globe the following January, almost a year later.
After that, the world was her oyster. In '98 she starred in Soderbergh's critically acclaimed OUT OF SIGHT with George Clooney, and she also began recording her first album. She said that after SELENA she was inspired to be a singer. Her debut album ON THE SIX in '99 was a bit hit. She also launched her own fashion line and perfume. All these things Selena had already accomplished before her untimely death at 23. It's like J.Lo was living Selena's life/career.
The other eerie aspect is when J.Lo married Mark Anthony, because "Mark Anthony" was going to be Selena's name when her parents were hoping for a boy, but after she was born they settled on Selena.
R90, I had a similar experience regarding Elizabeth Hartman. Ten years ago I checked out A PATCH OF BLUE from my library and fell in love with her and her performance. When I did some research on her, I discovered that not only had she died prematurely, but that she had committed suicide by jumping out of her 5th story building. She had been suffering from depression.
Princess Diana, JFK, Jr., and Donna Summer.
I liked Elizabeth Hartman's voice in The Secrets of NIMH when I was a child, so gentle and motherly. Knowing she killed herself freaked me out
Jessica Savitch & Sharon Tate. The causes of their deaths are the stuff of nightmares.
I thought Jessica Savitch dies in a car accident
Ann Coulter's bloody dismemberment in that freak wood chipper accident surely was a shocking (-ly happy) surprise!
Another vote for John F. Kennedy, Jr. who died 14 years ago (time flies!). I just felt so bad for Caroline that she lost her only sibing who she was so close to.
I'm very glad to see R58 mentioning Kirsty MacColl and R83 too.
That was a sad death and probably the one that stuck with me. I'd liked her music before then, but unfortunately it took her death for me to fall in love with all of her catalog, which I still play today.
It sucked for a lot of reasons, mostly because she'd just gotten to a really happy place. And she was good people, and real people, never a bitchy starfucker. She died saving her child, which is love personified.
Every time I watch Selina the motion picture I always think, "Maybe this time she'll make it..." and she never does. I weep every time.
R98 you should read the book "A Patch of Blue" aka "Be Ready With Bells and Drums" by Elizabeth Kata. It has a sad, shocking ending that Hollywood totally changed.
Jessica savitch drove her car into a canal and drowned
There will never be again be public shock and grieving as there was over the deaths of those two beloved icons, JFK and Diana. Nothing could ever come close. I remember the annual Wigstock celebration in NYC actually felt like a funeral the day after Diana died.
In chronological order:
Dick Shawn (death worthy of a black comedy)
I was completely devastated over the shocking, sudden death of DL icon Erik Rhodes. Still not completely recovered.
Definitely Elvis Presley; totally unexpected. Also Karen Carpenter.
R104 It was her only sibling period. And the last of her immediate family.
R111, I love how in Selena's entry they only refer to her as "dead Tejano singer whose name rhymes with subpoena" because the family ordered them to take down her pictures and not refer to her by name. haha
[quote]John Lennon, because it was so brutally stupid. For once the bitch couldn't push him out of the way to get her face in front of people?
That reminded me of the old joke by Judy Tenuta: "I'm sorry, but if that guy had aimed a little to the left he would've been a fuckin' hero."
ESS EE ELL EE ENN AY
This is probably stretching the DL definition of celebrity, but I actually broke down crying when Doctor Who's Elisabeth Sladen died. And I'd only started watching the show as an adult, so it's not like I'd grown up with the Doctor and Sarah.
The Voice of the Night
Oh shit! R117 was meant for R114. By R111.
JFK Jr, Princess Diana and John Lennon, but none were as shocking as my brother's untimely and sudden death. Celebrities are not the same as someone you truly love.
The day that Farrah Fawcett died, and then Michael Jackson died later that day, stealing her thunder.
Heath. I remember finding out about his death reading a thread about the passing of Lois Nettleton..
Princess Diana, Ed Bradley (60 Minutes) and Donna Summer.
[r37] Warren Zevon?!?
The guy went on Letterman and announced he's dying!!! What is shocking about that death????? We knew he was dying!!!!
Princess Di. I was in utter shock and grief.
That candle got snuffed. Still think Di was pregnant with an Arab baby and they killed her. It was funny to see the Windsors squirm and pretend they cared. The world turned on them in their grieving
Despite all the warning sings, I was still shocked although not a big fan. Back in 1962, it was unusual for a major star to die so young. James Dean was not quite as well known yet when he died in the 1950s (not all his films had been released).
Fictional, of course, was Maureen Bauer.
She would have divorced Ed, moved back to the boarding house and ran it.
She would have become the twice a week matronly character that people talk to.
Dying after having your marriage fall apart through spousal betrayal horrific.
I think because musicians always seem larger than life and immortal it's shocking to me when they die so Kurt Cobain, Whitney and Michael Jackson hit me hard.
Princess Diana because she was an icon. Same with JFK Jr.
But I agree with a poster upthread about Phil Hartman. That hurt. It was shocking that he went out in such a way.
Well ... John Lennon was a shock. Even to him.
But more recently, yeah, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston (which, monetarily, if not happily, benefited their memories and families) ... those were BIG!
Phil Hartman shocked me because I had no idea his wife was a disturbed drug abuser. It came totally out of left field, and I'd never heard Hartman himself being involved in anything to the point of risk to his life.
All the others, even Princess Di, weren't at the "shock" level because of their lifestyles, profile, etc.--surprising, but not Mary! gasping shock.
By the way, girlfriends, here's another hot conspiracy theory: Rolling Stone writer/editor Michael Hastings was murdered for revealing the CIA's and Army's hatred for the Obama Administration.
Read and learn, bitches.
Princess Diana - complete shock - I was on my way to buy a porn video at the now-closed porno store on Christopher Street by the West Side Highway and I can still see the news reports on their pre-cable tv with crappy reception.
JFK, Jr. - again, a total shock. I never liked the wife.
James Gandolfini - look, enough about him being overweight - I see big fat fucks on the street every frigging day and they are alive (sort of) - therefore it had to be the coke - I suspect the same combination of youthful hedonism killed John Ritter and Bernie Mac as they hit their late middle-age.
Joey Stefano - again, in retrospect this one should not have been a shock, but he was THE porn star of the emerging VHS era, doing Madonna photo shoots and all that glamorous stuff.
Finally, I truly was shocked by and mourned the tragic passing of a cabaret singer named Nancy Lamott. She had a glorious voice. I saw her perform many times in NY, I even attended her Memorial Service.
[quote]Princess Diana - complete shock - I was on my way to buy a porn video at the now-closed porno store on Christopher Street by the West Side Highway
As where were you whens go, that one's a bit awkward.
Bernie Mac had sarcoidosis, r133.
I agree, r101. Both horrifying deaths. I wasn't alive when Sharon Tate was killed, but I remember Jessica Savitch's death, even though I was very young. She was my mother's favorite news personality and my mom talked about her for a long time afterward.
Trapped in an overturned car, stuck in the mud at the bottom of a shallow canal with the water pouring in - I cannot even imagine what that poor woman must have experienced.
I was in Ptown when Princess Di was killed. Talk about a MARY!!! festival in front of Spiritus Pizza that night. I know it's mean to say, but it was hilarious.
Slightly OT but the gaggle of queens watching the news of Diana's death always makes me laugh, but not in a mean-spirited way, more like a 'been there, seen that' kind of way. We had a big thread about them on DL years ago. I'm sure we've all known some guys who are exactly like that.
Heath shocked me. Had me clutching my pearls. So did John Lennon getting shot to death. Phil Hartman, John Belushi, Michael Jackson, and now, Gandolfini. Poof! Gone. But Marilyn Monroe was my first true shocker. I was only 13.
I know a lot of people now say Michael didn't surprise them, but I was definitely not expecting it. Actually when you think about it, both Gandolfini and Elvis died in the toilet. One that won't surprise me is John Goodman. He is huge, and he used to do drugs.
I actually passed out when i heard the news on Diana's death.
I agree, the younger the person, the more shocking.
I was stunned to hear of Kim Kardashian being murdered by Kanye. Especially tragic given their daughter was only a couple of months old.
Donna Summer was a shocker.
[quote]I actually passed out when i heard the news on Diana's death.
I dub thee Queen Mary!
I was really young at the time but I remember Freddie Prinz's death being a shock. It was during a week when we were kept home from school due to a massive snowstorm and we heard it on the radio. He was a big TV star in that time of 3 networks and was suddenly just gone.
When Diana died my partner at the time spent 36 straight hours on the couch watching the coverage while chain smoking and drinking beer. He didn't come to bed that weekend. And then Mother Teresa died...
And the murder-suicide of Rihanna and Chris Brown, r141. Not to mention Justin Bieber driving his car off that cliff.
[quote]When Diana died my partner at the time spent 36 straight hours on the couch watching the coverage while chain smoking and drinking beer. He didn't come to bed that weekend.
Good lord. I hope he became your ex shortly thereafter.
36 straight hours, r144? I think there was a little more involved there than just beer and cigs lol!
Well we did break up the next year. He's a good guy and we are still friends, but he was in a work situation at the time which was a factor as he was in a bad place emotionally on top of being a big Di fanatic.
I didn't expect Justin Bieber's beach house to just collapse the way it did - onto Kanye West's outdoor fashion show right on the beaches of Malibu. His odd choice of Katy Perry, Perez AND Paris HIlton, Brett Michaels, Taylor Swift, John Mayer, Nikki Minaj and Jonah Hill as models seemed an eclectic choice, not an electrified choice. The fact that the beach house pulled several power lines with it also meant the elite audience - the entire Murdoch family, including black sheep Wendi Deng and the exonerated Rebekah Brooks, Hollywood talents such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Franco and Seth McFarlane - were instantly incinerated into an ashen zephyr. When MSNBC reported the entire Kardashian family exploded into chunky smithereens, while Ryan Seacrest and Simon Cowell's screaming remains were devoured by ferocious nuclear sharks, the result of the Fukashima incident, I WAS shocked. Yet, through the tears - brought under control by my own eerie laughter - I was able to continue to the bathroom to execute that dump I was meaning to take.
[quote]Jessica savitch drove her car into a canal and drowned
Correction r106. Her date was driving. In spite earlier drug and alcohol issues she and her date tested totally clean on tox tests. Horrible death and very sad since she finally seemed to be getting her life together. She had her poor, beloved pooch with her too.
The pics of accident sight show an accident just waiting to happen. Really sad. I think she only 36.
r149, and don't forget Andy Cohen was there as well.
John Lennon's death was pretty shocking, not many celebrities are killed by a so-called fan no less.
Rockers usually died of drug overdoses or basically from a combo of booze and drugs.
Anissa Jones from FAMILY AFFAIR. She and I were born in the same year. She didn't live long enough to get her driver's license
Unfortunately, R152, Andy Cohen failed to arrive at the event on the beach. He fatefully accepted a ride to the show in the helicopter piloted by one of Mitt Romney's sons, a helicopter that contained the entire Romney family. While a seemingly motley crew, Cohen's status as the first Mormon Jew possibly served to lubricate the lucrative relationship. The lethally overloaded chopper overturned in a peculiarly comic death spiral as it made its way to its destination of doom - Bono's charity cotillion at Sean Penn's Harley Davidson themed fund raiser for Haiti. Or was it Cuba.
same here r143.
My mother screamed at me to turn off the damn TV, but I wouldn't.
I was still in high school, but I wouldn't listen to her or my father. I just kept watching.
Natalie Wood. I couldn't quite take it in. I thought they were saying her boat had sunk or something,
When Thomas Edison died, my whole family cried.
Jessica Savitch, the black anchor at ABC news, and Frank Reynolds of ABC
John-John and Princess Diana.
Elvis Presley at the young age of 42.
Diana's is the biggest in my lifetime. (I was too young to take in the shock of JFK.) Bro in the US called me in the UK in the small hours, and among the first things I gasped was that this was matched only by Kennedy.
So then, yes, TV and radio were on all night and day as the media tried to cope with this seismic event. I was aware that most Brits were sleeping and would wake much later to the news. Unforgettable.
I wasn't a huge fan, but of course registered her as quasi-celestial to many. I did note the waves she made that summer by posing on Dodi's yacht for the paps, and saying that big news would be coming soon. Well, yes. Taunt the Windsors at your peril.
Not to the same scale (little is), but Diana's friend Gianni Versace made a shocking exit that same season. (She had time to fit in his funeral.) His shooting, the manhunt, the killer's suicide and backstory, were all luridly compelling.
What was shocking about a 52-yr-old paraplegic's death, r161?
Diana, Princess of Wales, was not a mere "celebrity," just as President Obama is not a "celebrity."
Natasha Richardson was shocking and sad. She was brilliant in the revival of CABARET. What was heartbreaking was that her mother Vanessa Redgrave held her hand and sang "Edelweis" to her right before they turned off the life support machines.
Marc Bolan from T. Rex -- I was a huge fan.
John Lennon -- I often say that he was my generation's JFK since we all remembered where we were when we first heard the news.
JFK, Jr. -- it just seemed so stupid, unfair, and a continuation of that family's tragedy.
Gianni Versace -- another senseless act.
Elvis's death wasn't a shock. He basically exploded, like a tick.
: She sang WHAT to her? I've always called that dreadful song "Anal Wipes".
Most shocking celebrity death: "The Baby"--Jean Harlow.
Apparently, Redgrave and RIchardson did not share your disdain for the song, r171. Of course, I'm sure few can live up to the impeccable standards of someone tasteful and witty enough to come up with the alternative title, "Anal Wipes."
I'll also add Jim Croce and Harry Chapin to the list.
Natasha Richardson's death shocked me too. She was always in the shadow of her mother and then her husband and I always expected her to hit her stride when she was older like Mirren, Dench and Smith. She was just so darn talented and likable.
Still, I was surprised at how hard I was hit by it, moreso than Diana or anyone else's. Don't know why. I remember reading here that when they brought her from Canada to Lenox Hill hospital that that meant she was not going to make it, as Lenox Hill wasn't the kind of hospital that would've been able to treat her type of injuries. I remember walking by Lenox Hill that week and getting teary. I know...Mary!
R166/R172, why would Redgrave sing "Edelweiss" in Natasha's final moments if that was the song she sang at Natasha's first wedding, especially while the second husband (Neeson) was there?
Incidentally, that's a weird wedding song, too. It's about Austrian national pride.
Perhaps she sang it at the wedding and deathbed because she sang it to Natasha as a child.
You wouldn't have to be a reporter to know that the Power People hate Obama. Why do you think he can't get anything passed in congress? When America decides to get rid of it's Gestapo(CIA)...it will be a happy day.
When I heard that Jezebel had been thrown to the dogs, I was shocked!
Tomorrow, June 22, is the 44th anniversary of Judy Garland's death in London...by no means a surprise though.
Kevin Gray, earlier this year. Only 55, presumably healthy, died of a heart attack. Appeared as Broadway's Phantom of the Opera, the king in The King and I, and Manjiro in Pacific Overtures, among other shows. Very talented, gorgeous voice. What a shame he wasn't even mentioned at the Tony Awards.
[quote][R166]/[R172], why would Redgrave sing "Edelweiss" in Natasha's final moments if that was the song she sang at Natasha's first wedding, especially while the second husband (Neeson) was there?
How the hell should I know WHY she sang it? Just pointing out that she apparently DID sing it, for the benefit of the Anal Wipes dude who seemed shocked at the idea that she could a sing a song that does not meet his personal approval.
* Brandon Lee & Bruce Lee (obfuscated circumstances in both cases and a sad coincidence...some say it was the result of a curse)
* The extremely beautiful Jon-Erik Hexum (@ link)
Yikes, how would you like to have that face looking down at you as he filled you up? A pic of Jon-Erik I have never seen before. Thanks for that r182.
Michael Morrison from AtWT
Okay, mine is the cute actor Timothy Patrick Murphy, best known for his role on "Dallas" in the '80's. I was a small-town teenager, a virgin, didn't know any out gays.
I was reading a trashy movie mag (way before the internets) and a headline said something like, "CHARLENE TILTON FEARFUL BECAUSE SHE HAD KISSING SCENES WITH DEAD ACTOR". 1) I was shocked he was even dead; 2) I was shocked that he had AIDS; 3) I was shocked that a handsome, masculine man like that could be gay (Charles Nelson Reilly, Paul Lynde... totally). I remember it being all too much to process.
I cannot tell you how much I loved Buddy Holly and his music when I was a teenager. It took me a long, long time to get over his loss. I play his stuff now for just so long until I get sad all over again that he was taken so soon.
The Big Bopper and Richie Valens were good too, but Buddy was my man.
She sang it as a lullaby when Natasha was a child.
Okay, that makes sense. She was singing her to sleep one last time. That is quite touching.
The watermelon diet was supposed to be healthy.
I wasn't alive at the time but I have to say Marvin Gaye. He made beautiful, timeless music.
News of John Lennon's was a punch to the gut
I remember having the news on with the sound muted. I looked up and saw Stevie Ray Vaughan's photo and groaned.
Aaliyah's death shocked me. I wasn't a fan, it was just an especially stupid plane crash.
I read an interview with Vanessa not long after Natasha died. One sentence in the whole piece about her passing, "Ah Natasha. She was the merry one."
The rest was narcissistic prattle about herself. I'll never think of her the same again.
Poor Natasha. In more ways than one.
I was pretty shocked when George Harrison was stabbed in his home. I thought that was pretty weird, no serious security.
Raphael and Mozart - I can't get over the heartbreak. And loss to the worlds of art and music.
Emily Brontë still hurts too, but I'm not sure she would have written another Wuthering Heights. Gotta love a Schizoid with talent like that!
I remember George Harrison being stabbed, it was shortly before he died of cancer although I don't think the cancer was public knowledge yet. I thought "dear god, not again!" What was it about the Beatles that attracted so many fucking wackos?
A few other musicians yet to be mentioned here:
Stevie Ray Vaughan - the chopper pilot was showing off to the rockers despite being unfamiliar with the terrain. SRV had finally conquered his substance-abuse demons and was looking poised for bigger things.
Del Shannon - a manic-depressive who committed suicide not long after he received the career-reviving news that he was going to replace the late-Roy Orbison in The Travelling Willburys.
Gram Parsons - the moth got too close to the flame (Keith Richards and heroin, a fatal double-act).
[quote]What was it about the Beatles that attracted so many fucking wackos?