exordia

"By writing or reading obituaries, we can discover ways to make our time on earth more worthwhile, more productive, more meaningful to others."
Alana Baranick, "Life on the Death Beat"


"'I always read the obituaries in The Times,' I explained to her. 'They make me bloody glad to be alive.'"
John Mortimer, "Rumpole's Return"

Marie-Luise Jahn


Physician was part of the anti-Nazi group "the White Rose" -- via sueddeutsche.com

Ben Sonnenberg


Founder and publisher of Grand Street -- via the New York Times. He did what he damn pleased.

Robert Dunlap aka Ballarat Bob


One of the last of the old-time prospectors -- via the L.A. Times

Spencer G. Shaw


Librarian advocated literacy efforts for children -- via the Seattle Times

William Allen Kruse


Fishing captain was evidently suicide as result of Gulf oil spill -- via al.com

Paul Wilcox


Broadcaster was host of "Polka Varieties" for 27 years -- via Cleveland.com

Martha Benton


Advocate for public housing residents -- via the Baltimore Sun

Chuck Hedges


Jazz clarinetist -- via groups.google.com/group/alt.obituaries and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Wendell Logan


Composer -- via the New York Times

Mary Jane Coleman


Film festival director championed independent film -- via the Greeneville Sun

Fred Anderson


Great saxophonist -- via the New York Times

Frank Giering


Solid German actor -- via Reuters. He may be best remembered for his role as a psychotic killer in Haneke's original version of "Funny Games."

Pennant Roberts


English TV director -- via Doctor Who News

Tracy Wright


Canadian actress -- via the Toronto Globe and Mail

Rosemary Gillespie aka Waratah Rose


Australian human rights activist -- via World News Australia

Ursula Thiess


German-born actress was widow of Robert Taylor -- via the Beatrice Daily Sun

Kalmen Opperman


Master clarinetist -- via the New York Times

Joe Deal


Landscape photographer showed us a screwed-up American West -- via the New York Times

Deborah Jo White aka Jo Jo Billingsley


Former Lynryd Skynyrd back-up singer -- via the Cullman Times. She had a prophetic dream about the 1977 plane crash that devastated the band -- she later became a Christian minister and singer.

Edith Shain


Woman who claimed to be part of iconic V-J Day photo -- via the L.A. Times

Alan Plater


English playwright and novelist best known for his literary adaptations -- via the Times of London

Pete Quaife


Original bassist with the Kinks -- via the Guardian

Walter Rodriguez


Actor, director and playwright -- via the Puerto Rico Daily Sun

Vince O'Brien


Actor -- via California Chronicle

Tam White


Scottish blues singer and actor -- via the BBC

Irwin Barker


Canadian comedian -- via the CBC

John Ferrugio


Pan Am in-flight director was the hero of Flight 93 in September, 1970, helping to evacuate all 170 passengers and crew before terrorists exploded their hijacked plane -- via the Boston Globe

Larry Jon Wilson


Singer, songwriter and musician you've probably not heard of. Why? Because he wouldn't compromise. Via the Tennessean

Chris Sievey


Very interesting comic, musician and writer best known for his papier-mache-headed persona, Frank Sidebottom -- via the BBC

Daisy D'Ora


German silent film star and noted beauty later became diplomat's wife, started home for children -- via Mittelbayerische

Rev. Nico Smith


The South African government wouldn't stop its policy of apartheid. His religion wouldn't stand up against it.What did this minister do? Left his denomination. Moved with his family into a black township. He wasn't content to protest, or even stand witness to injustice. He placed himself in its path. A brave man. Via AP

Nestor Bedolido


Philippine journalist -- via the New York Times. Third reporter killed in a week there -- what the hell is going on?

Aaron Dodd


Chicago's memorable "tuba guy" -- via the Examiner