On This Day

Famous Deaths on August 2

  • 257 St Stephen I, bishop of Rome (Pope) (254-57) and heretic fighter, dies
  • 640 Severinus, Italian Pope (640), dies
  • 686 Pope John V, 1st Greek-Syrian Pope (685-86) dies
  • 924 Ælfweard of Wessex, briefly King of the Anglo-Saxons
  • 1002 Abu Amir Mohammed ibn Abd allah ibn Mohammed ibn Abi Amir, dies at 64
  • 1075 John VIII Xiphilinus, theologian and patriarch of Constantinople, dies
  • 1100 William II [Rufus], king of England, shot in New Forest at 44
  • 1222 Raymond VI, Count of Toulouse (1194-1222), dies at 65
  • 1511 Andrew Barton, Scottish sailor and privateer, killed in a battle at sea
  • 1512 Alessandro Achillini, Italian physician and philosopher, dies at 48
  • 1589 Henry III, King of Poland and France (1573-89), assassinated at 37
  • 1600 Arent van Dorp, Dutch governor of East-Zealand, dies at about 70
  • 1611 Kato Kiyomasa, Japanese warlord and samurai (b. 1562)
  • 1649 Elisabeth Bas, Dutch business woman and wife of Admiral Swartenhondt, dies at about 78
  • 1655 Alfonso de la Cueva, Spanish marquis of Bedmar and diplomat, dies at 83
  • 1661 Louis Couperin, French composer and organist , dies (b. 1626)
  • 1696 Robert Campbell of Glenlyon, Scottish military commander (b. 1630)
  • 1769 Daniel Finch, 8th Earl of Winchilsea, English politician, dies at 80
  • 1776 Louis François I, Prince of Conti, French nobleman and military leader, dies at 58
  • 1788 Thomas Gainsborough, English painter (Blue Boy), dies at 61
  • 1792 Nathanael Gottfried Gruner, German composer, dies at 60
  • 1799 Jacques-Etienne Montgolfier, French inventor (1st hot air balloon), dies at 54
  • 1811 William Williams, American merchant (signed US Declaration of Independence), dies at 80
  • 1815 Guillaume Brune, French marshal, dies at 52
  • 1823 Lazare Carnot, French politician, engineer and mathematician known as the Organizer of Victory in the French Revolutionary Wars, dies at 70
  • 1827 James Hewitt, American composer and conductor, dies at 57
  • 1849 Governor Muhammad Ali of Egypt (b. 1769)
  • 1869 Alexandrine Tinne, Dutch explorer and photographer, murdered trying to cross the Sahara at 33
  • 1872 Judocus Smits, Dutch RC newspaper publisher (De Tijd), dies at 59
  • 1873 Frank Mori, English composer, dies at 53

Wild Bill Hickok

1876 Wild Bill" Hickok [James Butler], American cowboy and scout, shot dead from behind by Jack McCall while playing poker (he held a pair of Aces and a pair of 8's), dies at 39

  • 1881 Marcus Clarke, English born Australian author (For the Term of His Natural Life) dies at 35
  • 1889 Eduardo Gutiérrez, Argentinian author (Juan Moreira), dies at 38
  • 1890 Louise-Victorine Ackermann, French poet (works characterized by a deep sense of pessimism), dies at 76
  • 1891 George Washington Williams, American historian (History of the Negro Race in America), dies from tuberculosis and pleurisy at 41
  • 1895 Joseph Thomson, Scottish geologist and early African explorer (Thomson's Gazelle), dies of pneumonia at 37
  • 1903 Edmond Nocard, French veterinarian (Louis Pasteur Institute), dies at 53
  • 1914 Gabriel Édouard Xavier Dupont, French composer, dies of tuberculosis at 36
  • 1916 Hamish MacCunn, Scottish composer (The Land of the Mountain and the Flood), and teacher, dies at 48
  • 1920 Ormer Locklear, American movie stunt pilot (The Great Air Robbery), dies at 28

Enrico Caruso

1921 Enrico Caruso, Italian operatic tenor (Faust), dies of pleurisy at 48

Alexander Graham Bell

1922 Alexander Graham Bell, Scottish-born British American inventor (telephone), dies of diabetes complications at 75

  • 1922 Mina Kruseman, Dutch author and feminist, dies at 82

Warren G. Harding

1923 Warren G. Harding, 29th President of the United States (1921-23), dies of a heart attack at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco at 57

  • 1929 Mae Costello [Altschuk], American actress (The Joys of a Jealous Wife), dies of heart disease at 47
  • 1931 Kinue Hitomi, Japanese athlete (World record women's 100m, 200m, long jump, triple jump; Olympic silver 800m 1928), dies from pneumonia at 24
  • 1932 Dan Brouthers, American MLB baseball player known as the first great slugger in baseball history, dies at 74
  • 1936 Louis Blériot, French aviator who made the first flight across the English Channel in a heavier than air aircraft, dies of a heart attack at 64
  • 1938 Bjarni Thorsteinsson, Icelandic organist, composer, musical folklorist, and priest, dies at 76
  • 1939 Harvey Spencer Lewis, American Rosicrucian author and mystic, dies at 55
  • 1941 Jose Juan Tablada, Mexican poet (el Florilegio), dies at 70
  • 1942 Friedrich Aereboe, German landlord and agricultural economist, dies at 77
  • 1945 Emil Nikolaus von Reznicek, Austrian composer (Donna Diana), dies at 85
  • 1945 Pietro Mascagni, Italian opera composer (Cavalleria Rusticana), dies at 81
  • 1954 Rene Amengual, Chilean pianist, composer and educator, dies at 42
  • 1955 Rupprecht, last crown prince of Bavaria and German fieldmarshall during WWI, dies at 86
  • 1955 Wallace Stevens, American poet (The Auroras of Autumn), dies at 75
  • 1955 Alfred Lépine, Canadian ice hockey player and coach, dies at 54
  • 1956 Albert Woolson, last veteran US Union army, dies at 109
  • 1959 Prospero Bisquertt, Chilean composer, dies at 78
  • 1961 Giovanni Battista Angioletti, Italian author (Il giorno del giudizio), dies at 64
  • 1963 Oliver [Hazard Perry] La Farge, American anthropologist and novelist, dies at 61
  • 1964 Jack Kirkwood, Scottish actor (Fibber McGee & Molly), dies at 69
  • 1964 José María Castro, Argentine composer, dies at 71
  • 1965 Milton B. Babbitt, American composer (Widow's Lament), dies at 49
  • 1965 N. Howell Furman, American Chemist whose work on separating uranium contributed to the development of the atomic bomb, dies at 73
  • 1967 Claude Albert Barnett, American journalist and founder (Associated Negro Press), dies at 77
  • 1969 Clarence Dickinson, American composer, dies at 96
  • 1971 Ludwig Marcuse, German philosopher, dies at 77
  • 1972 Brian Cole, American rock vocalist and bassist (Association - "Windy"; "Cherish"), dies of overdose at 29
  • 1972 Paul Goodman, US social critic/writer, dies at 60
  • 1972 Rudolph Ganz, Swiss-American pianist, conductor (St. Louis Symphony, 1921-27), composer, and educator (Chicago Musical College, 1928-54), dies at 95
  • 1972 Helen Hoyt, American poet, dies at 85
  • 1973 Jean-Pierre Melville, director (Bob Le Flambeur), dies at 57
  • 1974 W. Douglas Hawkes, British racing driver, dies at 80
  • 1976 Fritz Lang, Austrian-German-American director (M, Metropolis, Fury, The Testament of Dr. Mabuse), dies from a stroke at 85
  • 1978 Carlos Chávez, Mexican conductor and composer (Sinfonía India), dies at 79
  • 1978 Satomi Myodo, Zen nun/attendant of Hakuun Yasutani Roshi, dies at 82
  • 1978 Totie Fields [Sophie Feldman], American comedienne, dies at 48
  • 1979 Thurman Munson, American baseball catcher (MLB All-Star 1971, 73–78; World Series 1977, 78; AL MVP 1976; NY Yankees), dies in a plane crash at 32
  • 1980 Verdun Scott, New Zealand cricket batsman, rugby league utility back (10 Tests; 1 cap), dies at 64
  • 1981 Stefanie Clausen, Danish diver (Olympic gold 10m platform 1920), dies at 81
  • 1982 Cathleen Nesbitt, English actress (Separate Tables), dies at 93
  • 1982 Rudolf Maros, Hungarian composer (Sirato/Lament; Euphonies), and pedagogue, dies at 65
  • 1983 James Jamerson, American session bass guitarist (Motown Records' "Funk Brothers"), dies of alcohol-related complications at 47
  • 1985 Frank Faylen, American actor (It's a Wonderful Life, Funny Girl), dies of pneumonia at 79
  • 1985 Sandy Bell, South African cricket pace bowler (16 Tests), dies at 79
  • 1986 Roy Marcus Cohn, American lawyer (Joseph McCarthy), dies of AIDS at 59
  • 1987 Myron Stout, US abstract artist, dies at 79
  • 1988 Raymond Carver, American poet and short story writer (Furious Season), dies at 50
  • 1988 Roger Vuataz, Swiss organist, conductor, and composer, dies at 90
  • 1988 Joe Carcione, American consumer advocate (The Green Grocer), dies at 73
  • 1990 Norman Mclean, American writer (b. 1902)
  • 1990 Edwin Richfield, British actor (Interpol Calling, The Avengers), dies at 68
  • 1991 Helen Page Camp, American actress, dies at 60
  • 1992 Ephraim Katz, Israeli American writer and filmmaker (The Film Encyclopedia), dies at 60
  • 1992 Jim Whaley, TV host (Cinema Showcase), dies of heart attack at 44
  • 1992 Julio C Fernandez, Cuban/American journalist (founder Alma Mater), dies
  • 1992 Michel Berges, French composer, dies of a heart attack at 44
  • 1992 Michel Berger, French singer-songwriter, dies of a heart attack at 44
  • 1994 Bhagwatpersad Ausan, commandant Suriname military police, dies at 38
  • 1994 Bert Freed, American character actor (Shane, Invaders From Mars), dies of a heart attack at 74
  • 1995 Brian Smith, Canadian sportscaster and NHL player, dies at 54 after being shot the previous day
  • 1995 Colin Falkland Gray, New Zealand fighter ace of the Second World War, dies at 80
  • 1995 Irwin Bazelon, American composer (Duo for Viola), dies at 73
  • 1996 Humphrey Fisher, English born TV Producer, dies at 72
  • 1996 Michel Debre, French politician, Prime Minister of France (1959-62), dies at 84

William S. Burroughs

1997 William S. Burroughs, American writer (Naked Lunch, The Nova Trilogy) and visual artist, dies of a heart attack at 83

  • 1997 Fela Kuti, Nigerian Afrobeat musician and composer, dies of an illness, disputedly AIDS related, at 58
  • 1998 Shari Lewis, American puppeteer and ventriloquist (Lamb Chop), dies at 64
  • 2001 Ron Townson, American singer (The 5th Dimension - "Up, Up and Away"), dies of kidney failure at 68
  • 2003 Don Estelle [Ronald Edwards], British actor and singer ("It Ain't Half Hot Mum"), dies at 70
  • 2003 Mike Levey, American TV infomercials host, dies of cancer at 55
  • 2003 Peter Safar, Austrian physician (pioneered cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR), dies at 79
  • 2003 Charles Kerruish, Manx politician and President of Tyndwald Isle of Man, dies at 86
  • 2004 Don Tosti, American musician ("Pachuco Boogie"), dies at 81
  • 2004 François Craenhals, Belgian comic artist (Chevalier Ardent), dies at 77
  • 2005 Steven Vincent, American journalist and writer, kidnapped and murdered by religious extremists in Iraq at 49
  • 2007 Chauncey Bailey, American journalist and editor, murdered while investigating a crime syndicate at 57
  • 2007 Holden Roberto, Angolan independence leader, founder of the National Liberation Front of Angola (FNLA), dies at 84
  • 2007 Kay Dotrice [Katherine Newman], British actress (Cheech & Chong's The Corsican Brothers), dies of a heart attack at 78
  • 2008 Fujio Akatsuka, Japanese cartoonist, dies of pneumonia at 72
  • 2008 John F. Seiberling, American politician (Rep-D-OH, 1971-86), dies at 89
  • 2011 DeLois Barrett Campbell, American gospel singer (Barrett Sisters), dies at 85
  • 2011 Baruj Benacerraf, Venezuelan-American immunologist (Nobel 1980 - discovery of genes that regulate immune responses and of the role that some of these genes play in autoimmune diseases), dies at 90
  • 2011 Clarence E. Miller, American politician (Rep-R-OH, 1967-93), dies at 93
  • 2012 Marguerite Piazza, American operatic soprano (Young Broadway), dies at 86
  • 2012 Jimmy Jones, American singer-songwriter ("Handy Man"), dies at 75
  • 2014 Rosetta Hightower, American pop singer (The Orlons - "Don't Hang Up"), dies at 70
  • 2015 Forrest Bird, American aviator and inventor (1st respirators and ventilators), dies at 94
  • 2015 Cilla Black [Priscilla White], British pop singer ("Anyone Who Had a Heart"), and TV personality (Blind Date), dies at 72
  • 2016 Forbes Carlile, Australian athlete and influential swimming coach, dies at 95
  • 2016 David Huddleston, American actor (The Big Lebowski), dies at 85
  • 2016 Ahmed Zewail, Egyptian-American chemist, (Nobel Prize 1999), dies at 70
  • 2020 Saïd Amara, Algerian soccer midfielder (5 caps; Strasbourg, Béziers, Bordeaux) and manager (Algeria), dies at 87
  • 2020 Zhaksylyk Ushkempirov, Kazakh Greco-Roman wrestler (Olympic gold, light-flyweight 1980; World C'ship gold 1981), dies at 69
  • 2020 Leon Fleisher, American pianist and conductor (Annapolis Symphony 1970-82), dies of cancer at 92 [1]
  • 2020 Bob Ryland, American tennis player (first African-American to play professionally) and coach (Harold Solomon, Arthur Ashe, Venus & Serena Williams), dies of aspiration pneumonia at 100
  • 2021 June Daugherty, American women's college basketball coach (Boise State Uni, Uni of Washington, Washington State University), dies from heart issues at 64
  • 2021 Ged Dunn, English rugby league winger (8 Tests; Hull KIngston Rovers 301 games), dies at 74
August 2 Highlights