Learning of the death of one of your childhood heroes is always a sad experience, and it seems 2018 was a year when we had to say goodbye to too many of them.
No matter your area of interest, we all would have keenly felt the loss of someone from the celebrity world last year – from political big-hitters like George H.W. Bush and Paddy Ashdown; to sporting stars Cyrille Regis and Eric Bristow; and icons of stage and screen from Stan Lee to June Whitfield, all will be greatly missed.
And the losses have continued into 2019, with the sad news that we have already lost such much-loved people such as WWE Hall of Famer “Mean” Gene Okerlund, Albert Finney, and England goalkeeping legend Gordon Banks.
Here’s a look at those we’ve lost in 2019, who have and will continue to inspire generations for years to come.
TV presenter and naturalist David Bellamy passed away on December 11 at the age of 86.
Bellamy earned acclaim in the 80’s for his TV nature shows, but also his unique presenting style which made him a household name.
Roxette singer Marie Fredriksson died at the age of 61.
The Swedish popstar, who co-created Roxette with Per Gessle in 1986, died on December 9 after suffering from a long-term illness.
She was best known for her Roxette hits It Must Have Been Love, Joyride, Listen To Your Heart and The Look.
The pop duo were huge in their time, selling more than 75million records around the world and scoring 19 Top 40 hits, which propelled them to the height of fame.
“Marie Fredriksson is most mourned by her husband Mikael Bolyos and their two children,” the family wrote in a statement.
“It is with great sadness that we have to announce that one of our biggest and most beloved artists is gone. Marie Fredriksson died on the morning of December 9 in the suites of her previous illness.”
Actor Rene Auberjonois died on December 8 aged 79 after suffering from metastatic lung cancer.
Aubjernonois appeared in a variety of well known roles during his career. He portrayed shape shifter Odo in Stark Trek: Deep Space Nine, Father Mulcahy in M.A.S.H., the Chef in Disney’s The Little Mermaid and Paul Lewiston in legal comedy drama Boston Legal.
His role as Sebastian Baye in the Broadway musical Coco earned him a Tony Award in 1969.
Sesame Street puppeteer Caroll Spinney died on December 8 aged 85.
Spinney provided the voice and movements for Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch when the iconic children’s TV programme debuted in 1969, and only retired from the show in 2018.
Sesame Street co-founder Joan Ganz Cooney said “Caroll Spinney’s contributions to Sesame Street are countless.”
Rapper Juice Wrld died on December 8 aged 21 following a seizure.
Born Jarad Anthony Higgins, the recently-signed rising rap star caught the public’s attention with tracks Luci Dream and All Girls Are the Same, as well as his collaboration on No Bystanders with Travis Scott.
Former football manager Ron Saunders died on December 7 aged 87.
After managerial stints at Norwich City and Man City, Saunders held the top job at Aston Villa between 1974 and 1982, during which time he led the team to promotion to the First Division, as well as two League Cup wins and their first First Division title win for 71 years.
He later went on to join rival club Birmingham City and eventually West Bromwich Albion.
Cricketer Bob Willis died on December 4 aged 70 after a short illness.
As well as playing for Surrey and Warwickshire, Willis also played for the national team between 1971 and 1984, and was captain of England in 18 tests.
After retiring from the sport, he went on to become a commentator for Sky in 1985.
Shelley Morrison died of heart failure on December 1, aged 83.
The Will & Grace star played squeaky self-centered millionaire Karen Walker’s embattled maid Rosario in the hit US show from 1999 to 2006.
Before that, she was best known for playing Sister Sixto on The Flying Nun with Sally Field from 1967 to 1970.
Theatre star Jonathan Miller died on November 27 aged 85.
Miller directed, wrote and acted during a career which started when he appeared with Dudley Moore, Alan Bennett and Peter Cook in comedy revue Beyond the Fringe.
He was behind numerous productions at the National Theatre and the Old Vic, as well as the English National Opera.
Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes died on November 26 aged 59.
The culinary star earned five Michelin stars during his career, and hosted a number of cooking shows on TV including Masterchef and Rhodes Around Britain.
Australian broadcaster and writer Clive James died aged 80 on November 24.
Born in 1939 under the name of Vivian James, he made a move to England in 1961.
Clive was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2010 and wrote a book about what would be the remaining years of his life.
Jane Galloway Heitz
Actress Jane Galloway Heitz died aged 78.
Heitz was most famous for playing Lillian Adler on hit musical TV show Glee, alongside her roles on The Bing Bang Theory, Prison Break and Grey’s Anatomy. Jane also appeared in David Lynch’s 1999 movie The Straight Story.
Photographer Terry O’Neill died on November 17 aged 81 after a long battle with prostate cancer.
O’Neill was most famous for working with the like of The Rolling Stones, The Beatles and Elton John. He was also an executive producer on the 1981 movie Mommie Dearest.
Photographer Robert Freeman died on November 8 aged 82.
Freeman was most known for his collaborations with The Beatles, and was behind the images used for the covers of albums Rubber Soul and Help!, as well as photos featured on Beatles For Sale and With the Beatles.
He also contributed to the band’s first two films, Help! and A Hard Day’s Night.
The original Malboro Man Robert Norris died on November 3 aged 90.
Norris appeared as the character in the cigarette brand’s marketing in the 60s, becoming a familiar face in magazines and on billboards despite never actually smoking himself.
Musician Paul Barrere died on October 26 aged 71 after suffering complications from liver diesease.
The singer and guitarist had been a member of rock band Little Feat since their reformation in since 1972.
When announcing the news of Barrere’s passing on their website, the band wrote “Paul, sail on to the next place in your journey with our abiding love for a life always dedicated to the muse and the music. We are grateful for the time we have shared.”
Paralympic gold medalist Marieke Vervoort died on October 22 aged 40.
The athlete was suffering from an incurable degenerative muscle disease and ended her own life via euthanasia, which is legal in her native Belgium.
She won a total of 7 medals during her career.
American congressman Elijah Cummings died on October 17 aged 68 from health complications following a medical procedure in September this year.
Born in Baltimore on January 18,1951, he worked as a lawyer for the best part of 20 years before his election into the House of Representatives in November 1996.
Neighbours creator Reg Watson died on October 12 aged 93.
The television producer and screenwriter spent a decade in the UK working on British soap Crossroads before returning to his native Australia, where he was involved in the development of shows such as Sons and Daughters, The Young Doctors and Prisoner: Cell Block H.
It was in 1985 that he eventually launched the now iconic soap Neighbours, which has gone on to become Australia’s longest running drama series.
Drummer Ginger Baker died on October 6 aged 80.
Baker co-founded rock band Cream in 1966 alongside guitarist Eric Clapton. The star was hailed as an influential force in the genre thanks to his groundbreaking technique and fiery stage presence.
Ginger also had stints in other bands, including Blind Faith and Hawkwind.
Musician Kim Shattuck died on October 2 aged 56 after battling motor neurone disease.
Shattuck was the lead vocalist and bass player in punk band The Muffs, formed in 1991. She played in and collaborated with a number of other groups during her career, including NOFX, Pixies and The Pandoras.
The Muffs famously recorded a cover of Kim Wilde’s hit single Kids in America for the soundtrack to 1995 film Clueless.
Newsreader Peter Sissons died on October 1 aged 77.
Sissons was most well known for fronting the BBC’s Nine O’Clock News and Ten O’Clock News between 1993 and 2003. He was also the host of Question Time from 1989 until 1993.
Peter also had stints as a newsreader on ITV and Channel 4 during his career.
Musician Barrie Masters died aged 63, and at the time of writing, the circumstances of his passing are not yet known.
Masters was the frontman in the band Eddie and the Hot Rods. The outfit were formed in Essex in 1975, and scored a top 10 chart hit with Do Anything You Wanna Do in 1977.
Hanna Yusef died October 1, aged just 27.
The BBC journalist’s passing was sudden and unexpected and at the time of writing the cause of death is unknown.
Hanna was born in Somalia in 1992, she graduated from Queen Mary University of London with a BA Hons in French.
She has also worked for The Times, ITV and Muslim News amongst others within her career.
Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell died at the age of 55 after her long battle with cancer, her management announced.
In a statement they said: “It is with the deepest sadness that Leah Bracknell’s family confirm that Leah passed away in September, three years after her diagnosis with stage 4 lung cancer.
“They would like to thank all the public for their support and generosity which contributed to the extension and quality of her life over the past three years.
“Leah continued to embrace life and faced her illness with positivity. Many aspects of her journey can be found on her blog.”
Bracknell was best known for her iconic role as Zoe Tate on the Yorkshire-based soap opera.
Actor Robert Garrison died on September 27 aged 59, after suffering from kidney and liver problems.
Garrison’s most famous appearance was in the classic 1984 movie The Karate Kid where he played Tommy, a member of the Cobra Kai. He reprised the role in YouTube series ‘Cobra Kai’ earlier this year.
Former French president Jacques Chirac died on September 26 aged 86.
Nicknamed ‘Le Bulldozer’, Chirac was in office as president from 1995 until 2007. He had previously served as France’s Prime Minister twice, and was Mayor of Paris between 1977 and 1995.
He was one of the main world leaders who opposed the war in Iraq in 2003, saying: “War is always a last resort. It is always proof of failure. It is always the worst of solutions, because it brings death and misery.”
Former MMA fighter Katy Collins died on September 25, aged 32.
Mum-of-two Collins died after suffering complications following a brain aneurysm.
Collins, who had a 7-5 record over three years competing in MMA, was known by the nickname ‘The Red Dragon’, and fought in MMA promotions Bellator, RFA, LFA and Invicta.
She exploded onto the mixed martial arts scene with six wins in her first seven fights from 2015, including three technical-knockout victories and three submissions.
J. Michael Mendel
The Simpsons producer J. Michael Mendel died on September 22, aged 54.
The four time Emmy-winning animation producer is best known for his work on The Simpsons and Rick And Morty and The Tracy Ullman Show.
He is survived by his wife, Juel Bestrop and their son and daughter.
Actor Sid Haig died on September 21, aged 80.
The death of the movie star was confirmed by his wife Susan L. Oberg on instagram
Sid is best known for playing Captain Spaulding in three of Rob Zombie’s horror movies House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil’s Rejects and 3 From Hell, but also appeared in other hit franchises such as James Bond’s Diamonds Are Forever, Batman, Star Trek, Mission: Impossible, The Rockford Files, Get Smart, The Dukes of Hazzard and MacGyver.
Celebrity chef Carl Ruiz died on September 21, aged 44.
Ruiz, the owner of La Cubana in New York, had been a regular face on the The Food Network.
A spokesperson for his restaurant, which opened three months ago, confirmed the sad news on social media.
Star Trek actor Aron Eisenberg died aged 50.
The TV star is best known for playing Nog in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, but also appeared in Star Trek: Renegades and Star Trek: Voyager.
The tragedy comes just months after he married in secret and the sad news was confirmed by his widow, Malissa Longo.
Fernando Ricksen died on September 18 at the age of 43 following a lengthy battle with motor neurone disease.
The Dutchman played for a few clubs in his native Holland, but is best known to British football fans following his six year spell at SPL side Rangers. In 2014, he was enrolled into the Rangers FC Hall of Fame.
NASCAR legend Mike Stefanik died aged 61 on September 15, following a plane crash in Rhode Island, USA.
Mike had a career spanning more than 30 years and is a nine time NASCAR winner.
Ric Ocasek, frontman of rock band The Cars, died on September 15, aged 75.
The rockstar was pronounced dead at his Manhattan townhouse following 911 reports of an ‘unresponsive male’, but no foul play is suspected.
The Cars became hugely popular in the late 1970s and early 80s, with hits including ‘My Best Friend’s Girl’, ‘Just What I Needed’, ‘Shake It Up’ and ‘Drive’.
Actor Brian Turk died on September 13, aged 49, following a battle with cancer.
He was best known for his role on Beverley Hills 902010 and also starred in HBOs Carnivale, ER, and Boy Meets World.
Turk also had many film credits to his name including American Pie 2, Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles, and The Lost World: Jurassic Park.
Brian is survived by his wife and his eight-year-old son.
Eddie Money died on September 13 at the age of 70.
The American singer, who found fame with hits in the 1970s and 80s like Two Tickets To Paradise and Take Me Home Tonight, died just weeks after revealing he had esophageal cancer.
The hitmaker confirmed last month the disease had already progressed to stage four.
Folk musician and visual artist Daniel Johnston, who influenced Nirvana star Kurt Cobain, died on September 11 at the age of 58.
The folk musician and visual artist died from a heart attack on Tuesday, The Austin Chronicle reports.
The American singer was most famous for his songs Life In Vain, True Love Will Find You in the End and Walking the Cow.
He had a number of high profile fans, including Cobain, who once said in an interview that Johnston was one of the “greatest” songwriters of all time.
Golfer Brian Barnes died on September 9, aged 74.
Barnes, who won the Senior British Open in 1995 before defending his title the following year, and who famously beat Jack Nicklaus twice in one day during the 1975 Ryder Cup, died from cancer following a short illness.
Curacao goalkeeper Jairzinho Pieter died on September 9, aged 31.
Pieter was with his international teammates in Haiti ahead of their CONCACAF Nations League match.
He is reported to have felt unwell before suffering the heart attack and passing away.
Actor John Wesley died on September 7 at the age of 72.
The Louisiana born star had over 100 film and TV credits to his name, including an appearance on the Fresh Prince of Bel Air where he played Dr Hoover in the hit comedy series.
Wesley was also a renowned stage actor, starring in Lillian Hellman’s Toys in the Attic at London’s Old Globe Theatre, as well as An American Clock by Arthur Miller and Wild Oats at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.
Former South Africa star Chester Williams died on September 6, at the age of 49, following a suspected heart attack.
Williams, most remembered for being the only black player in the Springboks squad that won the World Cup in 1995, played 27 Tests during his seven-year international career from 1993 to 2000.
He scored 14 tries, four of them on home soil against Samoa at the 1995 tournament and also represented the Western Province and Golden Lions at club level, in addition to Super Rugby side the Cats.
Following his retirement from playing, Williams turned to coaching. He spent time as coach of the Springbok Sevens team and the Pumas, before recently working as head rugby coach at the University of Western Cape.
Project Runway and Mad Fashion star Chris March died on September 5, aged 56, after suffering a heart attack.
March designed Meryl Streep’s 2010 Oscar dress and also iconic pieces for Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Madonna.
The finalist in season four of the hit show passes away two years after a horror fall that left him in a medically induced coma.
The designer suffered paralysis in his legs, hand and arms.
Kylie Rae Harris
Country singer Kylie Rae Harris died in a fatal collision on September 4 at the age of 30.
Three cars were involved in the fatal road smash, with a 16-year-old girl also losing her life.
She was on her way to play the Big Barn Music Festival in Taos when the accident happened.
Kylie released her first album in 2013 titled ‘Taking it Back’ and released a self-titled EP earlier this year.
Renowned photographer Peter Lindbergh died on September 3, aged 74.
The news of Peter’s death was shared on his own Instagram account, with a message reading: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Peter Lindbergh on September 3rd 2019, at the age of 74.
“He is survived by his wife Petra, his first wife Astrid, his four sons Benjamin, Jérémy, Simon, Joseph and seven grandchildren.
“He leaves a big void.”
LaShawn Daniels, died on September 3, aged 41.
The Grammy Award winning songwriter, who is credited with penning some of Whitney Houston and Destiny’s Child’s biggest hits, died after reportedly succumbing to injuries suffered in a car accident.
Daniels was responsible for some of the biggest pop tunes of recent times, writing Say My Name for Destiny’s Child, as well as penning Whitney Houston’s It’s Not Right but It’s OK and Michael Jackson’s You Rock My World.
F2 driver Anthoine Hubert died on August 31, aged just 22.
The racing prodigy lost his life in adevastating high-speed crash in the feature F2 race at the Belgian Grand Prix.
Hubert’s car collided with that of Juan Manuel Correa, 20, as both cars almost disintegrated in the shocking collision.
Valerie Harper, star of The Mary Tyler Moore Show and spin-off Rhoda, died on August 30 at the age of 80.
The cause of death has yet to be disclosed at the time of writing, but it has been reported that she was battling cancer among a number of health issues.
Harper rose to fame for her role as Rhoda Morgenstern on The Mary Tyler Moore Show in the 1970s.
She then had her own spin-off sitcom, called Rhoda, following on at the end of the decade.
Terrance Dicks died on August 29, aged 84.
The Doctor Who writer was most famous for his work on the hit BBC show between 1968 to 1974.
Terrance’s success on the series led to him being a key writer in a number of the novels accompanying the show.
During his blossoming career, the writer became a script editor and a producer of classic serials for the BBC, overseeing productions of Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and Vanity Fair.
But Terrance was best known for his work as the veteran TV man who brought Doctor Who to life and made it a success.
TV host and race car driver Jessi Combs had died in a car crash on August 27, aged of 36.
She was referred to as the ‘fastest woman on four wheels’ after reaching speeds of 398mph in her jet-powered North American Eagle Supersonic Speed Challenger in 2013 – breaking the four-wheeled speed record.
Jessi had been attempting to break her own land-speed record when the tragedy occurred.
Former Grange Hill actress Anna Quayle passed away on August 16, aged 84, following a battle with Lewy body dementia.
Anna was born in 1932 and was the daughter of actor Douglas Quayle.
Renowned for her role as Ms Monroe in Grange Hill, she also starred in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Adam’s Family Tree and Father Charlie.
Actor Peter Fonda died on August 16 aged 79 following respiratory failure resulting from lung cancer.
The Hollywood legend was part of the famous Fonda family of actors - son of Henry, father of Bridget and brother of Jane.
Peter’s most famous role was in 1969 movie Easy Rider, alongside Jack Nicholson and Dennis Hopper. He co-wrote and produced the iconic film, which earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay.
The Walking Dead star Dango Nguyen died aged 48 after a battle with cancer on August 10.
He is best known for playing a guard in the zombie horror show, working for show villain The Governor and fighting with leading man Rick Grimes.
He was in seven episodes of the show and his other acting credits include roles in the MacGyver reboot, and TV series The Gifted.
David Berman, the lead vocalist in indie bands Silver Jews and Purple Mountains, died on August 7 aged 52.
In a statement, his record label Drag City said: “A great friend and one of the most inspiring individuals we’ve ever known is gone. “Rest easy, David.”
Berman formed Silver Jews in 1989 with Stephen Malkmus and Bob Nastanovich. In its later years the band featured David’s wife Cassie on bass.
Berman retired from music in 2009, but returned in 2018 to form new group Purple Mountains.
Nobel laureate Toni Morrison, one of the most influential American authors, died on August 6, aged 88.
She was the first black woman to receive the Nobel Prize in literature – and won a Pulitzer Prize for her novel Beloved.
And President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.
“Her writing was not just beautiful but meaningful – a challenge to our conscience and a call to greater empathy,” Obama wrote on Facebook in a post accompanied by a picture of him with Morrison in the Oval Office. “She was as good a storyteller, as captivating, in person as she was on the page.”
“I can think of few writers in American letters who wrote with more humanity or with more love for language than Toni,” Knopf Editor in Chief Sonny Mehta said. “… Her novels command and demand our attention. They are canonical works.”
Joe Longthorne died on August 3, at the age of 64.
The popular entertainer came to fame in 1981 as a singer and impressionist on the TV show Search For A Star.
Joe, who had battled cancer several times throughout his life, died in the early hours of the morning, surrounded by his family.
Ian Gibbons, member of rock group The Kinks, died on August 1 aged 67.
Gibbons was the band’s keyboardist on and off between 1979 until 1996. Fellow band member Sir Ray Davies said: “To simply say Ian will be missed would be an understatement.”
WWE Hall of Famer Harley Race died on August 1, aged 76.
The eight-time NWA World Heavyweight champion made his debut in the ring in 1960, working for the American Wrestling Alliance (AWA) and Northern Wrestling Alliance (NWA) among others.
Race is survived by three children and five grandchildren.
Harold ‘Hal’ Prince
Harold ‘Hal’ Prince died on July 31, aged 91, after a short illness.
The director and producer, known as Hal, won 21 Tony Awards for his work in the New York theatre industry, as well as being known this side of the pond for directing such hits as The Phantom of the Opera.
He leaves behind his wife Judy Chaplin and their children Daisy Prince and actor son Alexander Chaplin.
Actress Paula Williamson, who married renowned prisoner Charles Bronson, was found dead on July 29.
Staffordshire Police confirmed Paula had died and her body had been found at a house in the Sneyd Green area of Stoke-on-Trent.
The 38-year-old had filed for divorce from the notorious criminal who she wed in a prison chapel in November 2017.
Their relationship had broken by July 2018 with Paula appearing on Loose Women and breaking down in tears discussing her marriage.
Paula had appeared in Coronation Street and Emmerdale and met Bronson in prison in late 2016.
Jimmy Patton died just a year after his younger brother Barry Chuckle.
The 87-year-old comedian, who was a regular on their hit BBC show the Chuckle Brothers, died in July, a Facebook post on the official Chuckle Brothers page confirms.
“I just thought I’d let you know that the Chuckle Brothers older brother Jimmy Patton has sadly passed away,” it read.
“Jimmy was a big part of chucklevision and the stage shows where he played the character No Slacking. RIP Jim Lad. And No Slacking.”
He was married to wife Amy, who herself was a fan of the show as a child.
Gabe Khouth died on July 23, aged 46, following a suspected motorcycle accident.
The actor and voiceover artist was perhaps best known for appearing as Skip the Elf in Santa Baby, and more recently starred as Mr Clark/Sneezy in ABC’s Once Upon A Time.
Some of his most recognisable voice over credits include Dragonball Z as Goten, Arcade in X:Men Evolution and Felix in Barbie in the 12 Dancing Princesses.
Blade Runner actor Rutger Hauer died aged 75 on July 19.
The Dutch film legend, who played Roy Batty in the sci-fi epic, died at home in the Netherlands after a short illness.
His death was confirmed by his agent, Steve Kenis, who revealed Hauer died on 19 July.
Former European and world judo champion Craig Fallon died at the age of 36.
Fallon won the 60kg final at the 2005 World Championships before claiming gold at the 2006 European Championships and the 2007 World Cup.
He is the last British judoka to win a world crown and only the third British man in history.
Pernell ‘Sweet Pea’ Whitaker died on July 14, aged 55.
The boxing legend died of his injuries after being struck by a car in Virginia.
Whitaker, nicknamed ‘Sweet Pea’, won Olympic gold in 1984 before turning professional in the same year and will be remembered as perhaps the best defensive fighter of all time.
He won world titles at four different weights and is considered among the best to have ever laced up a pair of gloves.
Actor Karl Shiels died on July 14, aged 47.
The veteran star, who appeared in Peaky Blinders, was best known for his role as Robbie Quinn in Irish soap Fair City.
Karl also appeared in movie Batman Begins in 2005, as a thug imprisoned in Arkham Asylum.
He earned his first acting credit in 1999 in short Between Dreams and went on to appear in a number of TV shows and movies.
TV presenter Emily Hartridge died on July 12, aged 35.
Her family confirmed the death of the popular YouTuber and presenter of S***, I’m 30, who is believed to have died on Friday morning after she was involved in a collision in South London.
A statement popped up on Instagram said: “Hi everyone. This is a horrible thing to have to say over Instagram but we know many of you were expecting to see Emily today and this is the only way to contact you all at once.
Irish comedian Brendan Grace died on July 11 aged 68 following a battle with lung cancer.
Grace was most well known for his appearance on sitcom Father Ted as Father Fintan Stack.
Before his comedy career, Brendan was a singer, and was the original performer of 70s novelty record Combine Harvester before the Wurzels released their version. He also toured with the likes of John Denver and Frank Sinatra.
Mr Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll paid tribute to Grace, describing him as a “comedy legend”. He said: “So sad at the passing of a great comedy legend, husband and father”
Actress Denise Nickerson died on July 10 aged 62 after contracting pneumonia.
Nickerson was most famous for her role as Violet Beauregarde in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. She was just 13 when she landed the part in the 1971 childrens’ classic, and went on to TV roles on programmes including Dark Shadows and The Brady Bunch.
Emmerdale star Freddie Jones died on July 10, at the age of 91.
The actor played Sandy Thomas in the ITV soap for 13 years, joining in 2005 and filming his last scene in 2018.
A statement from Emmerdale paid tribute to the much-loved star.
“Everyone at Emmerdale is deeply sad to hear about the death of one of the show’s most brilliant actors and favourite human beings, Freddie Jones,” said a spokeswoman.
“Freddie was part of Emmerdale for many years and he brought his unique, energetic, infectious, twinkle to every scene he was in.”
Freddie was the father of British acting legend Toby Jones and two other sons in the industry – the director Rupert Jones and actor Casper Jones. His wife – their mother – is the actress Jennifer Heslewood.
Oscar-nominated and Emmy Award-winning actor Rip Torn died on July 9 aged 88.
Rip was a character actor best known for roles in Men In Black, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story and TV’s The Larry Sanders Show.
Tributes from esteemed names such as Will Smith, Neil Gaiman and Alex Baldwin were paid to Torn, who won an Emmy Award for his work on The Larry Sanders Show and earned the Oscar nomination for 1984 film Cross Creek.
Vinnie Jones‘ wife Tanya died after a six-year battle with cancer on July 7.
The footballer turned film star’s beloved wife died at the age of 53, at home in Los Angeles surrounded by her loved ones.
A statement from Jones’s management said: “At 8.46am local time in Los Angeles on Saturday July 6, Vinnie Jones’s wife, Tanya Jones, passed away after a long illness.
“Tanya passed peacefully at the Jones family home surrounded by Vinnie, their daughter and other family members.
“Vinnie and the family ask for privacy while they go through an understandable period of mourning during this devastating time.”
Former rugby player and ex-husband of Kerry Katona, George Kay, died of a drug overdose at the age of 39 on July 7.
George, the father of Kerry’s youngest daughter Dylan-Jorge, five, was pronounced dead on arrival to hospital yesterday.
He had a long history of drug abuse and had battled mental health issues during their chaotic relationship.
Disney Descendants star Cameron Boyce died in his sleep aged just 20 on July 6 2019.
His family confirmed the child actor suffered a fatal seizure due to “an ongoing medical condition”, although his official cause of death is yet to be established.
“It is with a profoundly heavy heart that we report that this morning we lost Cameron,” said his devastated parents and sister.
“He passed away in his sleep due to a seizure which was a result of an ongoing medical condition for which he was being treated.
“The world is now undoubtedly without one of its brightest lights, but his spirit will live on through the kindness and compassion of all who knew and loved him.”
They added: “We are utterly heartbroken and ask for privacy during this immensely difficult time as we grieve the loss of our precious son and brother.”
John McCririck passed away aged 79.
The former pundit was the face of Channel 4 racing for 28 years, before he was dropped in 2012.
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs passed away on July 1, aged just 27.
In a statement, the Angels said: “It is with great sorrow that we report Tyler Skaggs passed away earlier today in Texas.
“Tyler was, and always will be, an important part of the Angels Family. Our thoughts are with his wife Carli and his entire family during this devastating time.”
Skaggs was born in Woodland Hills California in 1991 and was drafted by the Angels in the first round of the 2009 Major League Baseball draft.
He made his pro debut in minor league baseball that season before being traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks the following summer.
Actor Max Wright died on June 26 aged 75 following a long battle with cancer.
Wright played Willie Tanner in 1908s sitcom ALF, and later starred in early episodes of Friends as the manager of Central Perk.
He also made appearances in ER, Murder She Wrote and Quantum Leap.
Reality TV star Beth Chapman died on June 26 aged 51 following a battle against throat cancer.
Beth was the wife of Duane Chapman AKA Dog the Bounty Hunter, and appeared alongside him on their TV show from the early 2000s which saw them track down lawbreakers. This was followed by a spin-off entitled Dog and Beth: On The Hunt.
Star of James Bond and Neighbours, James Marshall, died on June 26 at the age of 81.
He was most well known for his role as Commander Talbot in James Bond film The Spy Who Loved me.
The news was confirmed by an agent at ECA, Esta Charkham, who tweeted: “So sad that my dear old chum Bryan Marshall has gone on ahead.
“A wonderful actor – he was so good you never noticed how good he was.
“He was a valued chum. His credits are a catalogue of classic British and Australian TV.
“Fare Forward Dearest Bryan.”
Actor Douglas Fielding died aged 73.
Fielding starred as police officer Roy Quick in EastEnders between 1985 and 1986. He also portrayed Alec Quilley in cop drama Z Cars from 1969 until 1978.
Actor Billy Drago died on June 24 aged 73 after suffering a stroke.
Drago started out as as stuntman before going to make more than 100 films. He appeared in The Untouchables, The Hills Have Eyes, and starred opposite Chuck Norris as the villain in Delta Force 2: The Colombian Connection.
The star also had a number of small screen roles on shows including Charmed and The X-Files.
YouTube star Etika, real name Desmond Amofah, died at the age of 29.
Police confirmed the popular gamer had passed away, several days after he went missing and a number of his personal items were discovered on Manhattan Bridge.
The official New York City Police department tweeted: “We regret to inform that Desmond Amofah aka Etika has been found deceased.”
Actor William Simons died on June 21 aged 78. Simons was most famous for playing PC Alf Ventress on ITV show Heartbeart throughout its entire 18-year run. He also had numerous other small screen roles on programmes including Lovejoy, Bergerac, Coronation Street and The Sweeney.
Actor and film director Eddie Garcia died at the age of 90 on June 20.
He had a long career and is regarded as the greatest Filipino actor of all time.
His most famous work includes 1971’s Beast of the Yellow Night, 1972’s The Woman Hurt and 1986’s Magdusa ka!
Philippe Zdar, one half of French house duo Cassius, died on June 19 aged 50.
According to his agent, he accidentally fell to his death through window from “a high floor of an old building in Paris.”
They were great collaborators and their 2016 album Ibifornia featured the likes of Pharrell, Beastie Boys’ Mike D, Cat Power, and others.
British wrestling legend Adrian McCallum, known by his ring name of Lionheart, passed away on June 19 at the age 36.
Lionheart was the reigning ICW world heavyweight champion, and a big name on the British wrestling scene for more than 10 years, appearing on shows for WWE and TNA in the UK.
ICW (Insane Championship Wrestling) posted a heartfelt message on Twitter confirming the shock news, leading to tributes pouring in from across the wrestling community.
American socialite Gloria Vanderbilt died on June 17, aged 95.
Gloria was an artist, author, fashion designer and New York It Girl, as well as being an heiress to the Vanderbilt fortune.
Anderson Cooper confirmed the sad news on his TV show as he read an obituary for his mother.
Rapper Bushwick Bill died on June 9, aged 52, after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
The Geto Boys star, real name Richard Shaw, was surrounded by his family and friends when he passed away.
Shaw, who was born with dwarfism, previously performed under the name Little Billy and was the group’s dancer, before joining the band in 1986, performing alongside Willie D and Scarface.
Blake’s 7, Emmerdale and Doctor Who star Paul Darrow died on June 3.
His representative confirmed he died that morning, saying the world would be a ‘darker place’ without him.
“Over three decades I have been Paul’s confidante and have had the immense privilege of being part of his life,” the spokeswoman told the Daily Express.
“A star has gone out today; the world will be a darker place without him.”
Jose Antonio Reyes
Former Arsenal star Jose Antonio Reyes died on June 1, aged 35.
The footballer, who spent three seasons at the London club as well as at Spanish club Sevilla, was involved in a serious car accident in his home town of Utrera, in Spain.
He leaves behind his two daughters Noelia and Triana, and wife Noelia Lopez, who he married in June 2017.
Actor Carmine Caridi died on May 29 aged 85 after falling into a coma.
Caridi’s biggest roles were in the Godfather movies, appearing as Carmine Rosato in 1974’s The Godfather Part II, then returning in 1990 as a different character – Albert Volpe – for the concluding part of the gangster film trilogy.
The star also had several small screen roles on shows like Taxi, Starsky and Hutch, Fame and NYPD Blue.
Latin pop star Gabriel Diniz on May 27, aged 28, in a plane crash.
Best known globally for his hit ‘Jenifer’, the pop star was on his way to his girlfriend’s birthday party when the plane he was travelling in went down.
Two others were tragically killed in the same incident.
The Tiger Who Came To Tea author Judith Kerr died on May 22 at the age of 95.
The author and illustrator died at home after a short illness, her publishers confirmed.
The Tiger Who Came To Tea, which has sold over five million copies and never been out of print, was one of many books penned by Kerr.
Charlie Redmayne, HarperCollins CEO said: “Judith Kerr was a wonderful and inspiring person who was much loved by everyone at HarperCollins. She was a brilliantly talented artist and storyteller who has left us an extraordinary body of work.
“Always understated and very, very funny, Judith loved life and loved people – and particularly she loved a party.
“Beautifully dressed and with a smile on her face she would light up the room and would always be one of the last to leave. Time spent in her company was one of life’s great privileges and I am so grateful to have known her.”
Jake Black died on May 21, members of his band Alabama 3 confirmed.
The musician, who co-wrote the song used as the theme tune for The Sopranos, died just a few days after performing at a festival.
His cause of death is currently unknown .
Jake, who hailed from Glasgow, founded band Alabama 3 with fellow singer Rob Spragg in 1995.
They recorded a dozen albums made up of a groundbreaking electronic fusion of country, blues and acid house music.
The band’s biggest hit, Woke Up This Morning was used for the opening credits of gangster drama The Sopranos.
Legend of Forumla One, Niki Lauda, died at the age of 70 on May 20.
The three-time world champion took the title for Ferrari in 1975 and 1977 and then again for McLaren in 1984.
A statement said: “In deep sadness we announce that our beloved Niki has peacefully fallen asleep with his family.”
Butterflies star Andrew Hall died on May 20, aged 65.
The actor, who also starred in Coronation Street star in 2011 as the cross-dressing love interest of Audrey Roberts, passed away after a short illness.
A tweet from his management confirmed the news, saying: “It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our client and friend Andrew Hall who sadly passed away on Monday after a short illness.
“Andrew was loved by audiences for his many roles, most notably Butterflies, Coronation Street and, more recently, Syfy’s Blood Drive.”
‘Grumpy Cat’ Tardar Sauce
Fans of internet memes around the world mourned on May 17 when it was announced the world famous Grumpy Cat had passed away.
The female cat from Arizona became an internet sensation for her comically unhappy expression.
She passed away from complications after contracting an infection, aged 7.
Thor and Terminator: Salvation actor Isaac Kayy died at the age of 42 on May 15.
He died in Arizona after jumping from a bridge, before being hit by a car.
It is believed that ‘several bystanders tried physically restraining Kappy from jumping but failed to hold him’.
Kappy made headlines last year after allegedly assaulting Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris Jackson.
Doris Day died at the age of 97.
The Doris Day Animal Foundation confirmed the news that Day, one of the last surviving stars of the Golden Age of Hollywood, had passed away early on May 13 at her Carmel Valley home in California surrounded by friends.
According to the charity, the retired showbiz icon had ‘been in excellent physical health for her age’ until only recently contracting a serious case of pneumonia.
Day is survived by one grandson.
While she retired from the limelight in years, golden girl Day had enjoyed a glittering showbiz career lasting more than eight decades.
Nancy Wigginton, the first woman to read the news on BBC television, died at age 93 on May 11.
The cause of her death was given as congestive heart failure, hypertension and frailty of old age.
Sliver King – César Barrón
Former WCW wrestler Silver King, real name César Barrón, passed away on May 11, aged 51.
He reportedly died after ‘suffering a medical issue’ at the Roundhouse in east London during an event.
Barrón performed in WCW between 1997 and 2000, when he worked without one of the famous Mexican wrestling masks, and also appeared alongside Jack Black in wrestling comedy Nacho Libre.
Twin Peaks actress Peggy Lipton passed away from cancer on May 11 at the age of 72.
The former model rose to stardom in “The Mod Squad”, though is perhaps best known for playing waitress Norma Jennings in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks.
She leaves behind daughters Kidada and Rashida Jones, her children from her marriage to music producer Quincy Jones.
Brian Walden died on May 9, at the age of 86.
The broadcaster and former Labour politician succumbed to complications arising from emphysema.
Brian represented the constituency of Birmingham Ladywood from 1964 until 1977, leaving parliament to become a presenter for ITV, quickly gaining a reputation as one of the country’s finest political interviewers.
He is survived by his wife, Hazel, and four sons.
Comedian Freddie Starr died on May 9, at the age of 76.
Starr, who was also the lead singer of Merseybeat pop group the Midniters, was found dead at his Spanish home.
Freddie rose to fame in the early 1970s after appearing on TV show Opportunity Knocks and the Royal Variety Performance.
He went on to star in a number of his own TV shows, including The Freddie Starr Show and An Audience with Freddie Starr.
He is known to newer audiences for his stint in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in 2011.
Coronation Street star Irene Sutcliffe died on May 3, aged 88..
The actress made her debut on the ITV soap in 1968 as the long-suffering Maggie Clegg, who ran the corner shop with her alcoholic husband, Les.
Away from the stage and screen, Irene was a hard-working committee member of the Actors’ Benevolent Fund for several decades, helping to support actors and stage managers who are experiencing hardship through illness, injury or old age.
Star Wars actor Peter Mayhew has been remembered as a “big man with an even bigger heart” following his death at the age of 74.
British-American actor Mayhew played Wookiee warrior Chewbacca in the revered fantasy series of films, appearing in five movies, most recently 2015’s The Force Awakens.
His family announced that he died at his home in Texas on April 30 surrounded by loved ones.
Shortly after the news broke, Mayhew’s fans and former co-stars paid tribute.
Harrison Ford, who played the character of Han Solo, praised him for his “great dignity and noble character”.
Rowland “Boon” Gould
Boon Gould, the founding member of Level 42, was found dead at his home in late April.
Guitarist Rowland Gould, nicknamed Boon, was discovered by police in Dorset.
A Facebook statement posted by the band’s frontman Mark King announced the sad news.
“It is with the heaviest of hearts that I have to tell you of the passing of our dear friend and brother Boon Gould,” he wrote.
John Singleton died at the age of 51 on April 29.
The Oscar-nominated director, responsible for acclaimed films such as Boyz n The Hood, Shaft and 2 Fast 2 Furious, had been seriously ill in hospital after suffering a stroke.
Dallas’ Cliff Barnes died at the age of 83, believed to have passed away on April 21.
Ken Kercheval was best known for playing JR Ewing’s arch-rival opposite Larry Hagman in the hit US TV drama.
A spokeswoman at the Frist Funeral Home in the actor’s hometown of Clinton, Indiana, confirmed his death to The Hollywood Reporter.
Kercheval starred in 14 series of Dallas and even returned for the 2012 reboot.
Billy McNeill passed away on April 22, aged 79 after a long battle with dementia.
Lisbon Lion McNeill was the first British man to lift the European Cup as captain and he skippered the Hoops in their 1967 European Cup triumph where they beat Inter Milan in the final.
In a statement, Celtic said: “It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our father Billy McNeill. He passed away late last night (Monday, April 22) surrounded by his family and loved ones.”
Ray Boddington, the iconic frontman of Manchester band Piccadilly Rats, died on April 18, aged 77.
The singer, who was struck by a tram in Manchester city centre, died in hospital surrounded by his family.
Ray, who was well known as a busker in his hometown, had previously appeared on The X Factor and Judge Rinder.
Bradley Welsh, who starred in Trainspotting 2, died on April 17, aged 42.
Welsh, a former professional boxer and reformed football hooligan turned charity worker, appeared on an episode of Danny Dyer’s Deadliest Men back in 2008.
The dad, who leaves behind an eight-year-old daughter, played gangland kingpin Doyle in T2 and is friends with author of the novel, Irvine Welsh.
Georgia Engel, star of Everybody Loves Raymond, died on April 12, aged 70.
Engel – who was known for her sweet-sounding speaking voice – was nominated for five Emmys during her career.
She first rose to fame on The Mary Tyler Moore show playing Georgette Franklin, the wife of anchorman Ted Baker.
In later years Engel had roles in The Office, Two and a Half Men and the movie Grown Ups 2, as well as returning to the stage in several shows on Broadway.
Former Liverpool captain Tommy Smith died on April 11, aged 74.
Affectionately known as ‘The Anfield Iron’ club legend Smith, who had been battling dementia, spent 18 years as a player with the Reds and is one of the most influential figures in the club’s history.
The tough tackling midfielder captained his boyhood club and made 638 appearances in total – the eighth in the all-time list at Anfield.
Stand up comic Ian Cognito died on April 11, after ‘having a heart attack’ on stage.
The comedian was performing at the Lone Wolf Comedy Club in Bicester when he fell ill, with the audience initially believing his silence was part of his act.
Fellow comedians rushed to pay tribute to the “lovable lunatic”, who was affectionately known as Cogs. Hailing from Walthamstow, the comic’s age is unknown.
CBBC star Mya-Lecia Naylor died on April 7 at the age of 16.
Mya-Lecia, who starred in CBBC shows Millie Inbetween and Almost Never, was a model, actress and singer.
She also appeared in BBC show Absolutely Fabulous as Jane in 2004.
The sad news was confirmed by her representatives A&J Management.
Former EastEnders star Sandy Ratcliff died on April 7, at the age of 70.
The actress, who was one of the original EastEnders cast members and played Sue Osman from 1985 until 1989, passed away in a care home in Stamford Hill, North London.
Sandy starred in the first ever episode of the popular BBC soap in 1985 as cafe owner Ali Osman’s long-suffering wife.
John Quarmby died on April 5, aged 89.
He was best known for playing Mr Carnegie the health inspector in the classic Fawlty Towers episode Basil The Rat.
Comedy legend John Cleese led tributes to his TV co-star on Twitter.
He wrote: “Sad to hear of the death of John Quarmby who played the health inspector in Basil the Rat episode
“Lovely chap. I shall never forget the expression on his face when he saw the rat sitting in the biscuit tin.”
Liverpool band Her’s were killed in a car crash while touring the United States on March 27.
Stephen Fitzpatrick and Audun Laadig, were travelling to a gig in Santa Ana, California, on Wednesday, when they were involved in a fatal accident.
In a statement posted on Facebook, the band’s label Heist Or Hit wrote: “We are all heartbroken. Their energy, vibrancy and talent came to define our label.”
Musician Roger Charlery, better known as Ranking Roger of the Beat and General Public, died on March 26 at the age of 56.
News of his death was announced to fans with a statement on Instagram which read: “He fought & fought & fought, Roger was a fighter.”
In January this year it was revealed that Charlery had suffered a stroke over the summer and was diagnosed with two brain tumours and lung cancer.
The Walker Brothers star Scott Walker died at the age of 76.
The sad news was announced by independent record label 4AD, who say they were honoured to have worked with the star for 15 years.
Scott, who was born Noel Scott Engel, starred in the American pop trio, popular in the 1960s and 1970s, alongside John Walker and Gary Leeds.
His cause of death has not been announced.
Sharing the sad news, the label said on its website: “It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Scott Walker. Scott was 76 years old and is survived by his daughter, Lee, his granddaughter, Emmi-Lee, and his partner Beverly.
Up-and-coming country music star Justin Carter died on March 17 aged 35 after accidentally shooting himself.
The singer discharged a gun by mistake while filming a music video.
Carter was being touted as the ‘next Garth Brooks’ by his management, and was a father to two daughters.
Reality TV star Mike Thalassitis was found dead on March 16, aged 26.
The Love Island star’s body was found in woods near his Essex home.
Mike was a former League Two footballer who found fame on the ITV2 dating show in 2017.
His behaviour on the show saw him land the nickname ‘Muggy Mike’ as well as a reputation as a reality villain.
Irish actor Pat Laffan died on March 14, aged 79
Laffan was best known for his role as milkman Pat Mustard in Father Ted, and it was the show’s creator who broke the news of his passing on Twitter, telling his followers: “Just heard the sad news that Pat Laffan who played Pat Mustard in Father Ted has died. Rest in peace, Pat, a pleasure to work with you”.
The news was confirmed in a statement by Mr Laffan’s agent Lisa Richards.
F1 race director Charlie Whiting died on March 14 aged 66 from a pulmonary embolism.
A popular figure in Formula 1, Whiting had been in the role since 1997 and played a pivotal part in improving the motorsport’s safety.
TV presenter Magenta Devine died on March 6, aged 61, after a short illness.
The host of BBC Two’s Rough Guides to the World and Channel 4’s Network 7, Magenta – real name Kim Taylor – had been receiving treatment in hospital for an illness shortly before her death.
She was known for her distinctive choppy bob hairstyle, and the trademark dark shades she always wore.
Her other presenting credits include Young, Gifted And Broke from 1999 to 2001.
Luke Perry died on March 4, aged 52, after suffering a massive stroke.
He was rushed to hospital after suffering the stroke while at his Sherman Oaks, CA home, but never recovered.
Luke was best known for playing Dylan McKay in the teen show Beverly Hills, 90210 and was currently starring as Archie’s father Fred Andrews in Riverdale.
The Prodigy’s Keith Flint died at the age of 49 on March 4.
The singer, famous for his single Firestarter, was found dead at his home in Essex, with his best friend Liam Howlett revealing In an Instagram post that he took his own life.
Howlett wrote: “The news is true , I can’t believe I’m saying this but our brother Keith took his own life over the weekend.
I’m shell shocked , f**kin angry , confused and heart broken ….. r.i.p brother Liam #theprodigy .”
The Prodigy found huge fame after emerging from the underground rave scene in the early 1990s.
The German-American composer died in his Manhattan home on February 28 aged 89.
He won his first Oscar in his 20s, the first for best scoring of a musical picture for Gigi in 1958 and Porgy & Bess in 1959.
He is best known in the UK for his role as ‘Andrew Preview’ in Morcambe and Wise.
The Cure drummer Andy Anderson died on February 26, aged 68, after losing his battle with cancer.
His death was announced by former bandmate Lol Tolhurt, who said: “Andy Anderson was a true gentleman and a great musician with a wicked sense of humor which he kept until the end, a testament to his beautiful spirit on the last journey.”
Anderson revealed he had been diagnosed with the terminal disease just earlier this month, via a Facebook post.
Actress Lisa Sheridan, who appeared in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and The 4400, died on February 25, aged 44.
Her manager confirmed the news, saying: “She passed away Monday morning, at home, in her apartment in New Orleans. We are waiting for a coroners report on cause of death.”
Friends such as Baywatch actress Donna D’Errico and filmmaker Michael Dunaway took to social media to pay tribute to the star.
Sheridan’s body of work, mostly on US television, also
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