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Post Mortem: May 31, 2009 - June 6, 2009

Carradine's Death: Accidental?

BANGKOK, June 5 -- Thai police officers investigating the death of David Carradine, the American actor who made his name in the "Kung Fu" television series in the 1970s, say he most likely died of asphyxiation, possibly when an autoerotic sex game went wrong....

By Patricia Sullivan  |  June 5, 2009; 12:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Actors, actresses  
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Sam Butera, Sax Star, Dies

Sam Butera, who died June 3 at 81, was a hard-swinging tenor saxophonist who formed a rowdy and successful onstage partnership with entertainers Louis Prima and Keely Smith in the 1950s. Butera's not a household name. He's not a John Coltrane or a Coleman Hawkins. And frankly, when you listen...

By Adam Bernstein  |  June 5, 2009; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Adam Bernstein  
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Best Obit of the Week Poll

Time for our first BOW (Best Obit of the Week) user poll. It's not scientific, just for entertainment value. Which obit is the most surprising, best-researched, and the most well-written article about a person who died? You can find most of these stories at the Washington Post obits web page;...

By Patricia Sullivan  |  June 5, 2009; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Poll, survey  
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David Carradine's Best Work?

Early reports are that actor David Carradine was found dead today in Bangkok at age 72 and that suicide is the suspected cause of death. Barely a minute goes by without someone in the newsroom coming up and reciting something he did in the "Kill Bill" movies. Carradine may have...

By Adam Bernstein  |  June 4, 2009; 11:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Actors, actresses , Adam Bernstein  
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Actor David Carradine Dead

AP reports that actor David Carradine, best known for his 1970s "Kung Fu" television show and appearance in the "Kill Bill" movie, has been found dead in Bangkok, reportedly of a hanging....

By Patricia Sullivan  |  June 4, 2009; 10:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Actors, actresses  
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Blues Queen Koko Taylor Dies

Grammy Award-winning blues wailer Koko Taylor died today of complications from gastro-intestinal surgery in Chicago. A shout-out to Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune, who has a story up. Here's the queen herself, with Little Walter, on Wang Dang Doodle....

By Patricia Sullivan  |  June 3, 2009; 6:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Musicians  
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Poem for a Neighbor

An e-mail came to me the other day from Angela Scarlis, a poet who wanted to celebrate the life of her neighbor in Alexandria. Her friend was Louise Hurt, and she died May 19. Her death notice is here. "For me it is important that people can feel the pain...

By Adam Bernstein  |  June 3, 2009; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Adam Bernstein  
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Robert Wone Murder Case

In case you haven't seen it, Paul Duggan has written a remarkable story for The Post about one of the most mystifying murders in Washington in recent years -- the killing of Robert Wone. Duggan's two-part story retelling the 2006 murder of a young lawyer in a townhouse near Dupont...

By Matt Schudel  |  June 2, 2009; 3:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Matt Schudel , Washington DC-area people  
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Beyond Crazy

A dozen years ago, I co-wrote a book -- along with my wife, Tara Elgin Holley -- called "My Mother's Keeper: A Daughter's Memoir of Growing Up in the Shadow of Schizophrenia" (William Morrow, 1997). It was about Tara's mother, Dawn Elgin, her lifelong battle with mental illness and Tara's...

By Joe Holley  |  June 2, 2009; 1:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Joe Holley  
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Peter Falk Family Battle

The LA Times reports an ugly family feud between Peter Falk's wife and daughter as the 81-year-old actor suffers from advanced dementia. Though Falk is mostly remembered for "Columbo," he was harrowingly good in a wide range of films. I think mostly of his portrait of a merciless thug in...

By Adam Bernstein  |  June 2, 2009; 11:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Adam Bernstein  
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Washington's Wolfman Jack

Don Dillard, who died May 28 at 74, operated a 250 watt station in Wheaton that was a force in bringing rock music to a local radio audience weary of Doris Day, Percy Faith and Eddie Fisher. Dillard's obit is here. Dillard was a powerhouse in the late 1950s and...

By Adam Bernstein  |  June 2, 2009; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Adam Bernstein  
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Best Obit of the Week

What obits are you liking out there? Give us your thoughts throughout the week and on Friday, we'll run a little poll for Best Obit of the Week (BOW -- wow, what an acronym!) You don't have to limit yourself to the Washington Post obits, but if you want to...

By Patricia Sullivan  |  June 1, 2009; 4:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Patricia Sullivan , Poll, survey  
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"Bloke in a Frock"

Danny La Rue, a legendary British female impersonator known for his cabaret-style performances, extravagant costumes, impersonations of Hollywood A-listers and his signature bleach-blonde wig, died Sunday. He was 81. But beneath his feathered attire, elaborate headdresses and sequin gowns, La Rue thought of himself as just another performer. "I work...

By Lauren Wiseman  |  June 1, 2009; 1:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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Aboard the Titanic

Millvina Dean, the last living survivor of the Titanic tragedy, was too young to remember what happened that April night in 1912 -- she was only 9-weeks-old when the ship went down. Still, she's been a font of information in recent years about what is arguably the most famous sunken...

By Joe Holley  |  May 31, 2009; 5:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Joe Holley  
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'All in the Family' Writer

Michael "Mickey" Ross, a television writer and producer, who had a role in creating "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons" and "Three's Company," has died at the age of 89. He was a longtime associate of Norman Lear and won an Emmy for co-writing an episode in which Archie and...

By Matt Schudel  |  May 31, 2009; 4:57 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Matt Schudel  
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