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Hugh Hefner

(Founder of Playboy)

9 April 1926 – 27 September 2017 (Aged 91)

Hefner was a famous and controversial American magazine publisher, best known as the founder and editor-in-chief of Playboy magazine.

Towards the end of World War II, Hefner served two years in the U.S. Army as a noncombatant, before being discharged in 1946.

He went to the Chicago Art Institute majoring in psychology, and earning his bachelor’s degree in 1949.

In 1953, Hefner published the first issue of Playboy, which featured Marilyn Monroe in a nude calendar shoot and sold over 50,000 copies. He resided in the Playboy mansion, where his ‘playmates’ shared his wild partying lifestyle.

An advocate of freedom of expression, Hefner championed and campaigned for numerous causes including the Democratic Party, First Amendment rights, animal rescue, and the restoration of the Hollywood Sign.

In his later years, Hefner made major contributions to the restoration of classic films.

He also sold the Playboy mansion for $100 million to a neighbour, under the agreement that Hefner and his wife would continue living there until his death.

Hefner died at his Los Angeles home from sepsis, brought on by an E. coli infection. He is interred in Westwood Memorial Park in the crypt beside Marilyn Monroe.

Roger Moore


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14 October 1927 – 23 May 2017 (Aged 89)

Moore was a renowned English actor, world-famous for having played British secret agent James Bond in seven films from 1973 to 1985.

After making his film debut in 1945, with a small part in Caesar and Cleopatra, his budding acting career was interrupted when he was conscripted into the Army. He was stationed in West Germany for nearly three years.

During the 1960s, Moore became a household name for playing the lead role in The Saint from 1962 to 1969.

In 1972, Moore took over the role of Bond from Sean Connery, making his first appearance in Live and Let Die.

After retiring as Bond, Moore appeared in numerous other films and wrote a number of books. In 1991, Moore was appointed a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador,

In 2003, Moore was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his services to charity. In 2008, he was appointed a Commander in France’s National Order of Arts and Letters.

Moore suffered from poor health, including prostate cancer, Type 2 diabetes, and heart trouble resulted in him being fitted with a pacemaker.

Having undergone successful surgery in 1993, Moore died following a second battle with prostate cancer at the age of 89.

Mary Tyler Moore


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29 December 1936 – 25 January 2017 (Aged 80)

Tyler Moore was a hugely popular American television actress, best known for her roles in the television sitcoms The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961–1966) and The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970-1977).

Breaking down gender stereotype barriers with her roles on both The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Dick Van Dyke Show, Moore became a cultural icon and an inspiration for many women.

A life-long animal rights activist, Moore advocated for animal rights and supported charities like the ASPCA and Farm Sanctuary.

Moore was the International Chairman of JDRF (formerly the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation), helping to raise funds and awareness of type 1 diabetes.

In 2007, JDRF created the “Forever Moore” research initiative, in honour of her work.

The program supports work on translating basic research advances into new treatments and technologies for those living with type 1 diabetes.

Moore was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 1969 and also suffered from alcoholism. She died from heart failure due to pneumonia at the age of 80.

Martin McGuinness

(Politician/Irish Republican)

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23 May 1950 – 21 March 2017 (Aged 66)

McGuinness was an Irish republican and Sinn Féin politician who served as the deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland from May 2007 to January 2017.

A former Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) leader, by the age of 21, McGuinness was the second-in-command of the IRA in Derry, a position he held at the time of Bloody Sunday when 14 civil rights protesters were killed in the city by British soldiers.

In 1998, working alongside US Special Envoy George Mitchell, he was one of the main architects of the Good Friday Agreement, cementing the Northern Ireland peace process.

McGuinness was an MP from 1997 until his resignation in 2013. He served as Minister of Education in the Northern Ireland Executive between 1999 and 2002.

Following the St Andrews Agreement and the Assembly election in 2007, he became deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland, with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Ian Paisley becoming First Minister.

In 2011, he was Sinn Féin’s candidate for President of Ireland in the 2011 election. In January 2017, McGuinness resigned as deputy First Minister in a protest over a failed renewable energy incentive scheme, which is reported to have cost the public purse up to £500 million.

In January 2017, McGuinness announced he would not be standing for re-election to the Northern Ireland Assembly due to ill health.

He reportedly suffered from amyloidosis, a condition that attacks the vital organs. He died less than 2 months later at the age of 66.

Bruce Forsyth

(TV Presenter)

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22 February 1928 – 18 August 2017 (Aged 89)

Forsyth was a much-loved British television presenter, whose career spanned more than 75 years.

In the mid-1950s, Forsyth came to national attention through the series  Sunday Night at the London Palladium.

He went on to host several game shows, including The Generation GamePlay Your Cards Right, and The Price Is Right.

From 2004 to 2013, Forsyth co-presented Strictly Come Dancing.

Among the awards bestowed on him, Forsyth received the BAFTA Fellowship, a Royal Television Society Lifetime Achievement Award and the National Television Awards special recognition award.

In 2012, Guinness World Records recognised Forsyth as having the longest television career for a male entertainer. Forsyth died after suffering from pneumonia at the age of 89.

Fats Domino


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26 February 1928 – 24 October 2017 (Aged 89)

Domino was a hugely influential American pianist and singer-songwriter recognised as one of the pioneers of rock and roll music.

The popularity of Domino’s music helped break down racial barriers in the music industry. His 1949 release “The Fat Man” is widely regarded as the first million-selling Rock and Roll record.

During his career, Domino had 35 records in the U.S. Billboard Top 40, and five of his records sold more than a million copies, being certified gold. In total, Domino sold more than 65 million records. 

In 1986, Domino was one of the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award the following year.

Domino received the Rhythm & Blues Foundation’s Ray Charles Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995. Four of Domino’s songs have been added to the Grammy Hall of Fame for their significance in music history: “Blueberry Hill”, “Ain’t It A Shame”, “Walking to New Orleans” and “The Fat Man”.

In 2005, despite being urged to leave New Orleans prior to Hurricane Katrina, Domino chose to stay home with his wife, Rosemary, who was in poor health. The hurricane resulted in Domino’s home being badly flooded and he lost the majority of his possessions.

To raise money for repairs to his home, friends and rock stars such as Paul McCartney, Willie Nelson, and Elton John recorded a charity tribute album, Goin’ Home: A Tribute to Fats Domino. Domino died at his home in Harvey, Louisiana, at the age of 89, from natural causes.

Colin Meads

(Rugby Player)

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3 June 1936 – 20 August 2017 (Aged 81)

Meads was a New Zealand rugby union player, playing 55 test matches, primarily as a lock forward, for New Zealand’s All Blacks, from 1957 until 1971.

Meads is widely considered one of the greatest players in history and was an icon in New Zealand.

He was named the country’s Player of the Century in 1999.

A member of both the World Rugby Hall of Fame and the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame, Meads was also a member of the International Rugby Hall of Fame before it merged with the World Rugby Hall in 2014.

In August 2016, Meads was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, following several months of illness. He died in August 2017, as a result of cancer, at the age of 81.

Jake LaMotta


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10 July 1922 – 19 September 2017 (Aged 95)

LaMotta was an American professional boxer, a former world middleweight champion, widely known by his nickname “Raging Bull”.

Credited with having one of the greatest chins in boxing history, LaMotta was able to absorb incredible amounts of punishment in the ring over the course of his career.

His six-fight rivalry with Sugar Ray Robinson was one of the sports most celebrated, with LaMotta winning only one of the six bouts. However, each fight was close to call, with LaMotta dropping Robinson to the canvas multiple times.

Outside of the ring, LaMotta had a turbulent life, including a spell in a reformatory as a child, and was married seven times. He admitted to beating his wives and came close to beating a man to death during a robbery.

After retiring from the ring in 1954, LaMotta owned and managed bars, and also turned his hand to acting and being a stand-up comedian. 

In 1980, LaMotta was portrayed by Robert De Niro in the biopic Raging Bull.

LaMotta was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.  He died from complications of pneumonia at the age of 95.

Glen Campbell


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22 April 1936 – 8 August 2017 (Aged 81)

Campbell was an American Country Music legend, best known for a series of hit songs in the 1960s and 1970s, and for hosting The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour on CBS, from 1969 to 1972.

Among his biggest hit songs are “Universal Soldier”, “Gentle on My Mind”, “Wichita Lineman”, “Galveston”, “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “By the Time I Get to Phoenix”.

In a career spanning five decades, Campbell released over 70 albums, selling over 45 million records worldwide, including four platinum albums, and one double-platinum album.

In 1967, Campbell won four Grammys in the country and pop categories.

In 2012, Campbell won the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, while three of his hits have won Grammy Hall of Fame Awards.

In 1968, he won the Country Music Association top award as 1968 Entertainer of the Year. In 1969, Campbell played a supporting role in the film True Grit, which earned him a Golden Globe nomination for Most Promising Newcomer.

Campbell was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005. In 2011, Campbell was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. He died in August 2017 at the age of 81.

Adam West


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19 September 1928 – 9 June 2017 (Aged 88)

West was an American actor known primarily for his role as Batman in the 1960s television series and its 1966 feature film.

West performed notable voiceover work in The Fairly OddParents from 2003–2017 and Family Guy from 2000–2018, playing fictional versions of himself.

Late in his career, West starred in two animated Batman films, Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders, and Batman vs. Two-Face, which was released after his death.

West died following a short battle with leukaemia at the age of 88 in 2017.