On This Day

Famous Deaths on December 7

Cicero

43 BC Cicero, Roman statesman and philosopher, killed as part of the proscriptions at 63

  • 283 Catholic Pope Saint Eutychian
  • 983 Otto II the Red, German king/emperor (973-83), dies at about 28
  • 1254 Innocent IV [Sinibaldo dei Fieschi], Pope (1243-54), dies
  • 1279 Bolesław V the Chaste, High Duke of Poland (1243-79), dies at 53
  • 1295 Gilbert de Clare, 7th Earl of Hertford, English politician (b. 1243)
  • 1383 Wenceslaus, duke of Brabant, dies
  • 1498 Alexander Hegius von Heek, German humanist
  • 1649 Charles Garnier, French Jesuit missionary in New France, killed at 43
  • 1672 Richard Bellingham, English-born Massachusetts colonial magistrate (b. 1592)
  • 1683 John Oldham, English satirical poet, dies of smallpox at 30
  • 1723 Jan Santini Aichel, Bohemian architect (b. 1677)
  • 1725 Florent Carton Dancourt, French dramatist and actor (Le Chevalier à la mode), dies at 64
  • 1775 Charles Saunders, British admiral, First Lord of the Admiralty, dies at about 60
  • 1793 Joseph Bara, French revolutionary (b. 1780)
  • 1811 Ignaz Spangler, composer, dies at 54
  • 1815 Michel Ney, French marshal (Waterloo), murdered at 46

William Bligh

1817 William Bligh, British naval officer of "HMS Bounty" fame, dies at 63

  • 1823 Johann Gottlieb Schwencke, German bassoonist, dies at 79
  • 1826 John Flaxman, Engl sculptor (tombs at St Paul's Cathedral), dies at 71
  • 1829 Johann Christoph Kienlen, German composer, dies at 45
  • 1834 Ludwig Schuncke, composer, dies at 23
  • 1839 Jan Matyas Nepomuk August Vitasek, composer, dies at 69
  • 1841 Johann Daniel Ferstenberg, composer, dies at 83
  • 1842 Thomas Hamilton, Scottish writer (b. 1789)
  • 1860 Konstantin Sergeyevich Aksakov, Russian historian and poet, dies at 43
  • 1862 Sylvester Churchill, US Union brigadier general, dies
  • 1867 Rudolf Viole, composer, dies at 42
  • 1874 Constantin von Tischendorf, German biblical scholar (b. 1815)
  • 1877 Benjamin Huger, American Major General (Confederate Army), dies at 72
  • 1879 Jón Sigurðsson, Icelandic independence fighter and Icelandic historian, dies at 68
  • 1881 Julius FA Bahnsen, German philosopher (Tragic as Weltgesetz), dies at 51
  • 1894 Ferdinand de Lesseps, French diplomat (built Suez Canal), dies at 89
  • 1899 Anton de Kontski [Antoni Kątski], Polish-American pianist and composer (Awakening Of The Lion), Polish pianist and composer, dies at 82

Thomas Nast

1902 Thomas Nast, German-American caricaturist and political cartoonist of late 1800s America, dies of yellow fever at 62

  • 1906 Élie Ducommun, Swiss journalist, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (b. 1833)
  • 1909 Whitcomb Judson, American inventor (zipper), dies at 63
  • 1911 William Griggs, English inventor (photo chromo lithography), dies at 79
  • 1912 George Darwin, theorized Moon was pulled out of Pacific Ocean, dies
  • 1913 Luigi Oreglia di Santo Stefano, Italian Catholic churchman and last surviving cardinal of Pius IX, dies at 85
  • 1917 [Aloysius] Ludwig Minkus, Austrian violinist, and ballet composer (La Bayadère), dies at 91
  • 1927 Albert Griffiths ("Young Griffo"), Australian boxer (World Featherweight champion 1890-92), dies of apoplexy at 56
  • 1938 Harry Moses, cricketer (6 Tests for Australia 1887-95), dies
  • 1941 Cecil Forsyth, English composer, dies at 71
  • 1941 Iida, Japanese pilot/lt, dies in battle at 28
  • 1941 Mervyn S. Bennion, United States Navy Captain, Medal of Honor recipient, killed in Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (b. 1887)
  • 1941 Herbert C. Jones, United States Navy, Medal of Honor recipient, killed in Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (b. 1918)
  • 1941 Thomas J. Reeves, United States Navy, Medal of Honor recipient, killed in Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (b. 1895)
  • 1941 Franklin Van Valkenburgh, United States Navy, Medal of Honor recipient, killed in Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (b. 1888)
  • 1946 Sada Yacco, Japanese stage actress (b. 1871)
  • 1947 Nicholas Murray Butler, American philosopher, diplomat (Nobel Peace Prize 1931), educator (Columbia University President), dies at 85
  • 1947 Tristan Bernard, French playwright and novelist, dies at 81
  • 1948 Godfrey Turner, composer, dies at 35
  • 1956 Huntley Gordon, Canadian actor, dies at 77
  • 1959 Charlie Hall, English comedic actor (Tit for Tat, A Chump at Oxford), dies at 60
  • 1960 Clara Haskil, Swiss pianist (b. 1895)
  • 1962 Kirsten Flagstad, Norwegian soprano (Wagner), dies at 67
  • 1967 House Peters, British silent film actor (This Is the Life; Kansas Territory), dies at 87
  • 1969 Eric Portman, actor (Naked Edge), dies from heart ailment at 66
  • 1969 Hugh Williams, British dramatist, actor and writer (Wuthering Heights, Bank Holiday), dies after surgery at 65
  • 1969 Lefty O'Doul, American baseball player (b. 1897)

Rube Goldberg

1970 Rube Goldberg, American cartoonist whose carttoons inspired the Rube Goldberg contests (Pulitzer Prize 1948), dies of cancer at 87

  • 1970 Romaine Brooks [Beatrice Romaine Goddard], American painter, dies at 96
  • 1971 Milton Rosmer, British director (Murder in the Red Barn), dies at 90
  • 1975 Hardie Albright, actress (Silver Streak, Scarlet Letter), dies at 71
  • 1975 Beatrix Loughran, American figure skater (Olympic gold 1924, 1928, 1932), dies at 75
  • 1977 Paul Gibb, cricketer (England batsman, 8 Tests), dies
  • 1977 Peter Carl Goldmark, Hungarian-American engineer (developed the 33-1/3 rpm LP phonograph record format), dies in a car accident at 77
  • 1978 Alexander Wetmore, American ornithologist (b. 1886)
  • 1979 Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin, British-American astronomer and astrophysicist who proposed that stars are composed largely of hydrogen and are not glowing balls of molten rock, dies at 79 [1]
  • 1979 Mari Andriessen, Dutch sculptor (Dock Worker), dies at 82
  • 1979 Nicolas Born, German writer, dies of cancer at 41
  • 1979 Prince Chahryar Shafik, Shah of Iran's nephew, murdered in Paris
  • 1980 Darby Crash, American Punk rocker (Germs), dies of an overdose at 22
  • 1982 Charlie Brooks Jr, convicted murderer became 1st US prisoner to be executed by lethal injection, at a prison in Huntsville, Texas
  • 1982 George Kistiakowsky, Ukrainian-American chemist who helped develop the first atomic bomb (Manhattan Project) but later opposed nuclear weapons, dies at 82
  • 1982 William "Will" Lee, American actor (They Live by Night, Melody Lane), dies from a heart attack at 74
  • 1983 Edgar Graham, member of N Ireland Assembly, shot dead by IRA
  • 1983 Fanny Cano, Mexican actress (b. 1944)
  • 1984 Jeanne Cagney, American actress (Lion is in the Streets, Quicksand, Kentucky Rifle), dies of cancer at 65
  • 1984 Lee Roy Yarbrough, American race car (Nascar) driver (b. 1938)
  • 1985 Potter Stewart, 94th Supreme Court Justice (1958-81), dies in NH at 70
  • 1985 Robert Graves, English writer and poet (King Jesus), dies at 90
  • 1988 Andrei P Ershov, Russian computer pioneer, dies
  • 1988 Christopher Connelly, actor (Liar's Moon, Hawmps), dies at 47
  • 1988 Peter Langan, Irish restaurateur (Langans London), dies in fire
  • 1989 William 'Haystacks' Calhoun, American professional wrestler, dies at 55
  • 1990 Dee Clark, American singer (Raindrops), dies at 52
  • 1990 Horst Bienek, German writer and director (The First Polka), dies at 60
  • 1990 Joan Bennett, American actress (House Across the Bay), dies at 80
  • 1990 Jean Paul Lemieux, Canadian painter, dies at 86
  • 1990 Peter Mieg, Swiss composer, dies at 84
  • 1990 Jean Duceppe, Quebec actor (Mon oncle Antoine), dies at 67
  • 1990 Reinaldo Arenas, Cuban poet and novelist (Pentagonia), dies at 47
  • 1991 Michael Taylor, Male Model (b. 1913)
  • 1992 Maurice Coutinho, writer/translator (Silent Struggle), dies at 79
  • 1992 Ruth Corbett Thom, dies after long illness at 78
  • 1993 Félix Houphouet-Boigny, President of Ivory Coast (1960-93), dies at 88
  • 1994 Elga Andersen, German/French model/actress (Global Affair), dies at 58
  • 1994 J.C. Tremblay, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1939)
  • 1995 Larry Bartlett, photographer, dies at 42
  • 1995 Tom Burns, British-Chilean publisher and editor, dies at 89
  • 1996 Eugene Izzi, mystery writer, hangs himself at 43
  • 1996 Jose Donoso, Chilean writer (The Place Without Limits), dies at 72
  • 1997 Billy Bremner, Scottish footballer (Leeds United), dies at 54 from a suspected heart attack
  • 1998 John Addison, British composer (b. 1920)
  • 2000 Vladimir Gotovac, Croatian poet and politician (b. 1930)
  • 2001 Charles McClendon, LSU Tigers head football coach (b. 1923)
  • 2001 Pauline Moore [Joless Love], American actress (Colorado, Young Mr. Lincoln), dies of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis at 87
  • 2003 Carl F. H. Henry American theologian and publisher (b. 1913)
  • 2003 Azie Taylor Morton, Treasurer of the United States (b. 1936)
  • 2003 Joe Skeen, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Mexico), dies at 76
  • 2004 Frederick Fennell, American conductor (Time & Winds), dies at 90
  • 2004 Jerry Scoggins, American singer (b. 1913)
  • 2004 Jay Van Andel, co-founder and former chairman of Amway (b. 1924)
  • 2005 Bud Carson, American football player and coach (b. 1931)
  • 2005 Lucy d'Abreu, was the oldest living person in the United Kingdom from April 2004 until her death (b. 1892)
  • 2005 Rigoberto Alpizar, airplane passenger fatally shot by U.S. Air Marshals after allegedly claiming he had placed a bomb aboard (b. 1961)
  • 2006 Jeane Kirkpatrick, American ambassador (b. 1926)
  • 2006 Jay McShann, American musician (b. 1910)
  • 2008 Marky Cielo, Filipino and Igorot dancer and actor (b. 1988)
  • 2008 Dennis Yost, American vocalist, dies at 65
  • 2009 Mark Ritts, American actor (b. 1946)
  • 2010 Elizabeth Edwards, American lawyer and wife of John Edwards (b. 1949)
  • 2010 Gus Mercurio, American-born Australian actor (The Blue Lagoon, Crocodile Dundee II), dies at 82

Harry Morgan

2011 Harry Morgan, American actor (M*A*S*H - "Col. Potter"; Dragnet), dies in his sleep at 96

  • 2012 Saul Steinberg, American businessman, founder of Leasco and CEO of Reliance Insurance Company, dies at 73
  • 2012 Russ "Rusty" Thacker, American stage actor and singer, dies of cancer at 66
  • 2013 Édouard Molinaro, French film actor, director and screenwriter (La Cage aux Folles), dies a respiratory insufficiency at 85
  • 2013 Jacob Matlala, South African boxer (WBO, WBU, IBA flyweight champion; shortest world champion ever at 1.47m [4-foot-10]), dies from pneumonia at 51
  • 2014 Ken Weatherwax, American actor, dies from a heart attack at 59
  • 2014 John Bartholomew Tucker, American TV host (Candid Camera, Treasure Island), dies at 84
  • 2016 Greg Lake, English rock vocalist and bassist (King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer), dies of cancer at 69
  • 2016 Paul Elvstrøm, Danish yachtsman (4 Olympic gold, Finn class 1948, 52, 56, 60), dies at 88
  • 2016 Junaid Jamshed, Pakistani singer (Vital Signs 1), dies in a plane crash at 52
  • 2016 Hildegard Hamm-Brücher, German politician, dies at 95
  • 2017 Peter Walwyn, British thoroughbred trainer (champion trainer 1974-75), dies at 84
  • 2017 James "Sunny" Murray, American jazz musician and drummer, dies at 81
  • 2018 Belisario Betancur, Colombian politician, President of Colombia (1982-86), dies at 95
  • 2019 Chalmers "Bump" Elliott, American College Football Hall of Fame halfback and coach (U of Michigan) and college athletics administrator (Iowa), dies at 94
  • 2019 Denis Lalanne, French sports journalist ('Le grand combat du XV de France'; 'Rugbymania: French flair attitude'), dies at 93
  • 2019 Ron Saunders, English soccer striker (Portsmouth) and manager (Manchester City, Aston Villa, Birmingham City), dies at 87
  • 2020 Doug Scott, English mountaineer (first ascent of south-west face of Mount Everest), dies at 79 [1]
  • 2020 Chuck Yeager, American test pilot who was the 1st man to break the sound barrier, dies at 97 [1] [2]
  • 2020 Dick Allen, American baseball infielder (7 × MLB All-Star; NL Rookie of the Year 1964, Philadelphia Phillies; AL MVP 1972, Chicago WS), dies at 78 [1]
  • 2020 Fred Akers, American football coach (University of Wyoming; University of Texas, Austin; Purdue; career college record 108–75–3), dies at 82
December 7 Highlights