As 2017 passes into history, we know that the world is still intact, because the people of Austin came together once again back in April for one of the more unique events celebrated annually, the birthday party of Eeyore, the lovable Winnie-the-Pooh character. But, something new this year that has taken the stage by storm was "Hamilton: An American Musical" on Broadway.
In the coming years we will be remembering people we lost this year like Mary Tyler Moore. She first got our attention on the Dick Van Dyke Show of the 1960s, but it was Mary Richards who defined her.
Jerry Lewis, the comedy legend began his career with Dean Martin following WWII, but the Nutty Professor will be remembered for raising more than $2.6 billion for muscular dystrophy research with his annual Labor Day telethon.
The voice actress, June Forey, was 99. She was the voice behind dozens of well-known animated characters, including Rocky the Flying Squirrel of "The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show." I know heaven has a brand new angel this year, because Della Reese will be forever in our hearts. As you might have expected, Della was a minister and earlier in her career she was an incredible singer.
Actor Martin Landau died from "unexpected complications" on July 15; he was 89. Television's Batman died this year, Adam West, suffered a short battle with leukemia.
Singer David Cassidy of the Partridge Family was 67. The '70s pop star had been diagnosed with dementia earlier this year and had been hospitalized for organ failure for several days before passing.
And, speaking of singers, Gregg Allman of the Southern rock band Allman Brothers left us. Fats Domino, the rock 'n' roll legend died of natural causes at 89. He was best known for "Blueberry Hill" and "Ain't That a Shame." He is survived by his eight children.
We lost Glenn Campbell to Alzheimer's this year, one of the most accomplished guitar players of our time, even playing guitar and singing backup for the Beach Boys back in their hey-day of the mid 1960s. Campbell played on recordings by Bobby Darin, Ricky Nelson, Dean Martin, Nat King Cole, The Monkees, Nancy Sinatra, Frank Sinatra, Merle Haggard, Jan and Dean, Ronnie Dove, Phil Spector, and Elvis Presley. Campbell's first smash hit of his own, which made him a household name was "Gentle on My Mind" in 1967, an overnight success. Campbell hosted his own weekly variety show, "The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour," and of course co-starred in the 1969 Movie "True Grit" alongside John Wayne and Kim Darby.
Malcom Young, the AC/DC guitarist and cofounder was 64 when he died after a three-year battle with dementia.
One of our favorites, Tom Petty, died. The rock legend suffered cardiac arrest. Jana Novotna, the Wimbledon champion died in her native Czech Republic after a long battle with cancer. She was 49.
The comic Dick Gregory was shot in the leg trying to defuse the Watts riots, once ran for president, led a hunger strike to protest the Vietnam War and went to jail after joining demonstrators in Alabama.
When her partner of 40 years died, Edith Windsor took the government to court and won a landmark case for same-sex couples, opening the door for the eventual federal recognition for gay spouses.
Hugh Hefner, an incurable playboy, was 91, the creator of Playboy Magazine and the Playboy bunny. Former Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay was killed in a plane crash in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Florida, he was 40 years old. And, actor Robert Guillaume, best known for his title role on the 1990s series "Benson," died at the age of 89 at his L.A. home on Oct. 24.
Ref: Ref: The Examiner files and Getty Images
-- To reach Ted W. Stillwell send e-mail to Ted@bluandgrey.com or call him at 816-896-3592.