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Posted at 11:21 AM ET, 12/21/2009

A fond farewell: Celebs we lost in 2009

By Liz Kelly

Join me at 2 p.m. ET to discuss the latest on the death of Brittany Murphy and all the celebs we lost in 2009.

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Farrah Fawcett in 2000. (Getty Images)

The unexpected death of Brittany Murphy on Sunday underscored just how many we lost in 2009. From Michael Jackson to Patrick Swayze, below an edited look at celebrities who died over the past 12 months.

Patrick Swayze, Sept. 14 -- After a valiant fight and a desire to continue working, Swayze -- best known for his role in "Dirty Dancing," but equally loved for other roles -- succumbed to pancreatic cancer. | Career timeline

John Hughes, Aug. 6 -- The director of beloved movies -- from "Sixteen Candles" to "Home Alone" died suddenly of a heart attack while taking a walk near his New York home. | Gallery

Michael Jackson, June 25 -- The King of Pop, who left a legacy nearly as mysterious as his life, died at his Los Angeles home at age 50. The investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death continues. | Jackson's music through the years | Tribute

Farrah Fawcett, June 25 -- Fawcett, best known for her role on '70s girl power show "Charlie's Angels" -- lost her battle with cancer at age 62. | Gallery

Ed McMahon, June 23 -- Johnny Carson's steadfast sidekick succumbed to what his publicist described as "multiple health problems" at the age of 86. | Gallery

David Carradine, June 4 -- The "Kung Fu," "Kill Bill" actor was found dead in a Bangkok hotel room.

Natasha Richardson, March 18 -- The celebrated actress and wife of Liam Neeson died hours after a head injury she received while skiing. | Gallery

Ricardo Montalban, Jan. 14 -- Best known for his role as Mr. Roarke on TV's "Fantasy Island," the 88-year-old actor died of congestive heart failure at his Los Angeles home. | Appreciation

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More: Celebrities who died in 2009

By Liz Kelly  | December 21, 2009; 11:21 AM ET
Categories:  Celebrities  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Coroner: Brittany Murphy's death 'appears natural'; Tila Tequila pregnant?
Next: Brittany Murphy's autopsy results deferred; Tom Cruise sued for alleged spying

Comments

Liz, I don't recognize the names of at least 2/3 of the "celebrities" on the longer list. Does it mean that I'm Celebrity Challenged?

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | December 21, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Me neither, Sas. For example, who is Blue Iris? And do people like Jett Travolta and Altovise Davis really belong on this list? Maybe Altovise was famous in her own right, but somehow including Jett seems wrong to me.

Also, I like how Bea Arthur and Beatrice Arthur are listed separately on that longer list. I mean she did have a larger-than-life personality, but still....

And I REALLY didn't need to see that LIFE photo of Ted Kennedy in ? a corset?

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | December 21, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

td, I imagine that photo of Ted Kennedy was taken during his rehabilitation from a plane crash in the early-mid 60s. Kennedy suffered a spinal fracture in the plane crash and had to wear a back brace.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | December 21, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Kennedy suffered a spinal fracture in the plane crash and had to wear a back brace.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | December 21, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

The tranny in my building has the same problem.

Posted by: jezebel3 | December 21, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me or does it seem like an unusually high number of celebs passed away this year? I know people talked about the high mortality rates during the summer months, but when you look at the year as a whole, a whole heck of a lot of famous people died in '09.

Also, what to you think the chances are of Billy Mays being mentioned in the Emmy's "In Memoriam" tribute?

Posted by: StuckatWork | December 21, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Liz, I don't recognize the names of at least 2/3 of the "celebrities" on the longer list. Does it mean that I'm Celebrity Challenged?

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | December 21, 2009 11:26 AM

_____________________________________________

Make room for me on the Celebrity Challenged list cause I don't recognize most of 'em on that longer list either.

I only recognized Jonathan Frid by his name because his pic looks like a bad high school yearbook photo!

Posted by: wadejg | December 21, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

"Celebrities who died in 2009"

In alphabetical order by FIRST name?

Posted by: jezebel3 | December 21, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I recognized the vast majority of older celebrities who died in 2009, but the younger ones not so much.

Nosy Parker is now looking over her shoulder for the Grim Reaper.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | December 21, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Forget not recognizing 2/3 of the "celebrities ", I've never heard of 75 percent of them, and I don't consider myself unintelligent about world issues.

While I don't want to pick on individual listings, I have to join the others in asking why someone such as Jett Travolta is on the list? You're a celebrity for being a relative of a celebrity? Or, I guess for being photographed with a celebrity (even if it happens to be a parent)? And Oscar Mayer is a celebrity? Granted he's the retired chairman of a meat processing company that has his name, but he retired in 1977; and that makes him a celebrity? What's interesting is that the link to Marilyn Chambers (yes, I've heard of her) didn't even mention her Ivory Snow commercial and the relationship to her advertising that product and her future career in the movies.

What's even more frustrating than not recognizing most of the people (it must be generational but I doubt it) is when you try to open the link to see who the "celebrities" are that died in 2009, you open a website for "who dated who". There can't be another way to identify them or show their collective pictures without going "reality"?

Obviously I'm a lot more naive than I thought I was in name recognition.

dungarees@gmail.com

Posted by: Dungarees | December 21, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Obviously I'm a lot more naive than I thought I was in name recognition.

dungarees@gmail.com


Posted by: Dungarees | December 21, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

I didn't click on one photo...

Posted by: jezebel3 | December 21, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

So, I looked through that list and I didn't recognize a lot of names. Who are all these old people, like that Don Hewitt or Soupy Sales guy?

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | December 21, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Dorkus
Who are all these old people, like that Don Hewitt or Soupy Sales guy?

Nosy Parker is now sobbing softly by herself on a remote corner of Lizard Island.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | December 21, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Nosy, I'm sure Dorkus said that on purpose! I know I'm not old just cuz I know who Soupy Sales is.

Posted by: hodie | December 21, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Why has no one recognized Karl Malden who was nominated for several acadamy awards and won twice, I think.

Posted by: Joan850 | December 21, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Rest in eternal peace sweet angel. You will be missed. ='(

Posted by: MichaelM001InDC | December 21, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

This song is for someone you miss.
I wrote it.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AAfWzxoilnw

Posted by: mpdconst | December 21, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

RIP. We will miss them all. Yeah, even the ones we don't recognize had an effect on science (or is it an art) of celebritology.

Posted by: epjd | December 21, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

ep, presumably they all had family and friends who loved them and were proud of their achievements (except for the skeevy ones), too.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | December 21, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Each individual human being's life is as important as any other. This society has a perverse obsession with the lives of so-called celebrities. There must be some deep seated psychological reasons to help explain this and a possible best selling book.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | December 21, 2009 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Zal Yanovsky? Wow. Now there's only one Mugwump left (John Sebastian.)

And yes, I know who Stan Hewit (60 Minutes producer) and Soupy Sales (What's My Line) are. I am old.

But why do I find the deaths of porn stars particularly poignant?

Posted by: mdreader01 | December 22, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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