On This Day

Famous Deaths on January 2

  • 17 Ovid, Roman poet (Metamorphoses), dies at ~59
  • 1512 Svante, Regent of Sweden, dies at ~52
  • 1514 William Smyth, English bishop & statesman, dies at ~54
  • 1557 Pontormo, Italian painter (Sepulture of Christ), dies at 62
  • 1685 Harbottle Grimston, English politician, dies at 82
  • 1694 Henry Booth, 1st Earl of Warrington, English politician, dies at 42
  • 1726 Domenico Zipoli, Italian organist & composer, dies at 37
  • 1740 Johann Georg Weichenberger, Austrian composer, dies at 63
  • 1763 John Carteret, 2nd Earl Granville (C) & English chief minister (1722-42), dies at 72
  • 1780 Johann Ludwig Krebs, German musician & composer, dies at 66
  • 1789 Franz Joseph Leonti Meyer of Schauensee, Swiss composer & organist, dies at 68
  • 1790 Joseph Anton Feuchtmayer, German rococo sculptor, dies at 73
  • 1801 Johann Kaspar Lavater, Swiss writer, philosopher, founder of physiognomics, dies at 59
  • 1803 Ignaz Franz von Beecke, German composer, dies at 69
  • 1819 Maria Luisa of Parma, Queen of Charles IV of Spain, dies at 67
  • 1861 Frederick William IV, King of Prussia (1840-61) & Germany (1849-61), dies at 65

  • 1863 Roger Weightman Hanson, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies in Battle of Murfreesboro at 35
  • 1892 Frederick William Barber, South African frontiersman & scientist, dies at 78
  • 1892 George Biddell Airy, English mathematician and 7th Astronomer Royal, dies at 90
  • 1893 John Obadiah Westwood, British entomologist, dies at 87
  • 1904 Mathilde Bonaparte, French princess (daughter of Napoleon's brother Jérôme Bonaparte and his second wife, Catharina of Württemberg, daughter of King Frederick I of Württemberg) and socialite, dies at 83
  • 1911 Kanno Sugako, Japanese anarcho-feminist, hanged for her role in the plot to assassinate Emperor Meiji at 29
  • 1913 Léon Teisserenc de Bort, French meteorologist (stratosphere), dies at 57
  • 1915 Karl Goldmark, Austria-Hungarian composer (Queen of Saba), dies at 84
  • 1917 Edward Burnett Tylor, English anthropologist (Primitive Culture), dies at 84
  • 1918 Sybe Kornelis Bakker, Dutch Christian socialist & reformed preacher, dies at 42
  • 1921 Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg, Chancellor of the German Empire (1909-17), dies at 64
  • 1923 Sam Carter, African American resident of Rosewood Florida, lynched in the Rosewood Massacre
  • 1924 Sabine Baring-Gould, English composer & novelist, dies at 89
  • 1929 Erich Wichmann, Dutch fascist painter & sculptor, dies at 38
  • 1936 Sir Francis Newdegate, English politician (Governor of Tasmania, Western Australia), dies at 73
  • 1937 Ross Alexander, American stage and film actor (Captain Blood, Boulder Dam), commits suicide by gunshot at 29
  • 1939 Roman Dmowski, Polish politician, dies at 74
  • 1941 Mischa Levitzki, Russian-born American pianist & composer (The Enchanted Nymph), dies of a heart attack at 42
  • 1945 Betram Home Ramsay, Engl admiral (Normandy), dies at 61

  • 1946 Joe Darling, Australian cricket batsman & captain (34 Tests, 21 as captain), dies following a gall bladder operation at 75
  • 1948 Jatindramohan Bagchi, Indian (Bengali) poet, dies at 69

Person of interestEmil Jannings

1950 Emil Jannings, German actor (Faust, The Blue Angel, The Way of All Flesh), dies of liver cancer at 65

  • 1950 James Dooley, Irish-Australian Premier of New South Wales, dies at 72
  • 1951 Sir William Campion, Governor of Western Australia, dies at 80
  • 1953 Guccio Gucci, Italian founder of Gucci fashion house, dies at 71
  • 1955 Jose Antonio Remon, President of Panama (1952-55), assassinated at 46
  • 1960 Cees [Cornelis J] Laseur, Dutch actor & director (Hague Comedy), dies at 60
  • 1960 Chris van Abkoude, Dutch-American writer & novelist (Pietje Bell, Kruimeltje), dies at about 79
  • 1960 Fausto Coppi, Italian cyclist (Giro d'Italia 1940, 47, 49, 52-53; Tour de France 1949, 52; World Championship gold Individual pursuit 1947, road race 1953), dies from malaria at 40
  • 1960 Friedrich Adler, Austrian socialist politician & revolutionary (assassinated Count von Storgkh), dies at 80
  • 1960 Paul Sauvé, Canadian politician, dies at 52
  • 1961 Bob Catterall, South African cricketer (1555 runs/24 Tests for South Africa 1922-31), dies at 60
  • 1963 Dick Powell [Richard Ewing Powell], American singer, actor, producer and director (Cry Danger, Dick Powell Theater), dies from cancer at 58
  • 1963 Jack Carson, Canadian-American actor (Star is Born, Mildred Pierce), dies at 52
  • 1968 Sanoesi Pane, Indonesian writer, dies at 62
  • 1968 Marvin 'Bud' Ward, American golfer (US Amateur 1939, 41), dies of cancer at 54
  • 1969 George Renevant [Georges de Cheux], French actor (Moulin Rouge, Scotland Yard, Comrade X), dies at 74
  • 1970 Piotr Rytel, Polish composer, dies at 85
  • 1971 Willard Maas, American educator & experimental filmmaker (b. 1906)
  • 1971 Richard Maxwell (Dick) Haldane, South African trade unionist, dies at 62
  • 1971 Lloyd Hall, African-American chemist & pioneer in food chemistry (science of food preservation), dies at 76
  • 1973 Joseph Arthurlin "Joe" Harriott, Jamaican-British be-bop and free-form jazz alto saxophonist (Abstract), dies of cancer at 44
  • 1974 Tex Ritter, American country singer (5 Star Jubilee), dies at 67
  • 1975 Theo Osterkamp, German fighter pilot, dies at 82

Person of interestErroll Garner

1977 Erroll Garner, American jazz pianist (Misty), dies at 53

Jazz Pianist Erroll Garner
Jazz Pianist
Erroll Garner
  • 1980 Larry Williams, American singer-songwriter, dies at 44
  • 1981 David Lynch, American singer (Platters-My Prayer), dies at 51
  • 1983 Bernard George Stevens, British composer, dies at 66
  • 1983 Richard "Dick" Emery, British comedian & actor (Yellow Submarine, Loot, Baby Love), dies from cardio-respiratory failure at 65
  • 1983 Harriet Parsons, American film producer (Susan Slept Here), dies at 76 of cancer
  • 1985 Moses Josiah Madiba, South African author & first African chancellor of the University of the North, dies at 76
  • 1986 Una Merkel, American actress (Abraham Lincoln), dies at 82

Person of interestBill Veeck

1986 Bill Veeck, American MLB owner and promoter (Milwaukee Brewers, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Indians, St. Louis Browns), dies of lung cancer at 71

MLB Team Owner and Promoter Bill Veeck
MLB Team Owner and Promoter
Bill Veeck
  • 1986 Benny Payne, American jazz pianist (Cab Calloway; Billy Daniels Show), dies at 78
  • 1986 Herbert Magidson, American lyricist, winner of first Academy Award for Best Original Song ("The Continental"; "Gone With The Wind"; "The Masquerade Is Over"), dies at 79
  • 1987 Jean de Gribaldy, French road cyclist & team director (Frimatic - Viva, Miko, Sem - France Loire), dies at 64
  • 1988 E.B. Ford, British ecological geneticist, dies at 86
  • 1990 Alan Hale Jr., American actor (Skipper-Gilligan's Island), dies of cancer at 68
  • 1990 Vladimir Ussachevsky, Manchurian-American composer (Creation), dies at 78
  • 1991 Renato Rascel, Italian actor (7 Hills of Rome, Secrets of Santa Vittoria), dies of heart failure at 78
  • 1991 Irving Johnson, American sail training pioneer & adventurer, dies at 85
  • 1992 Virginia Field, British-born actress (Dream Girl), dies of cancer at 74
  • 1994 Dixy Lee Ray, American politician (17th Governor of Washington) & chairman of the United States Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), dies at 79
  • 1994 Pierre-Paul Schweitzer, French director of IMF (1963-73), dies at 81
  • 1994 Sammy Taft, Canadian businessman (coined term "hat trick"), dies at 81
  • 1995 Graham Sharp, British figure skater (World C'ship, European C'ship 1939), dies at 77
  • 1995 Manuel Rivera, Spanish painter & co-founder (El Paso), dies at 67
  • 1995 Nancy Kelly, American child actress & model (The Bad Seed, Double Exposure, Jesse James), dies at 73
  • 1995 Siad Barre, Somalia politician (President, 1969-91), dies at 84
  • 1996 Sydney Thompson, British rock climber, dies at 81
  • 1996 Thornton Page, American astrophysicist, dies at 82
  • 1996 Karl Targownik, Hungarian psychiatrist & Holocaust survivor, dies at 80
  • 1997 Randy California, American rock guitarist, dies at 45
  • 1998 Frank Muir, English writer & raconteur, dies at 77

  • 1999 Sebastian Haffner, German journalist & author, dies at 91
  • 1999 Shepard Menken, American voice & character actor (The Wild Wild West), dies at 77
  • 2000 Patrick O'Brian, British novelist, dies at 85
  • 2000 Elmo Zumwalt, American admiral, dies at 79
  • 2000 Nat Adderley, American jazz musician (Work Song), dies from diabetes complications at 68
  • 2001 William P. Rogers, American Republican politician & US secretary of state (1969-73), dies at 87
  • 2001 Teri Diver, American actress, dies at 29
  • 2002 Margaret "Bibi" Osterwald, American actress (As Good as It Gets, Bridget Loves Bernie), dies of lung disease at 83
  • 2002 Armi Aavikko, Finnish singer, dies at 43
  • 2002 Zac Foley, English rock bassist (EMF "Unbelievable"), dies at 31
  • 2003 Eric Jupp, British-born musician, dies at 80
  • 2004 Jess Collins, American artist, dies at 80
  • 2004 Doralyn "Lynn" Cartwright, American character actress (A League of Their Own), dies at 76
  • 2005 Maclyn McCarty, American geneticist, dies at 93
  • 2005 Cyril Fletcher, British comedian, dies at 91
  • 2005 Edo Murtić, Croatian painter, dies at 83
  • 2005 Frank Kelly Freas, American artist, dies at 82
  • 2005 Ronald "Bo" Ginn, American politician, dies at 70
  • 2006 Cecilia Muñoz-Palma, first female Philippine Supreme Court Justice, dies at 92
  • 2006 Osa Massen [Aase Madsen Iversen], Dutch actress (Jack London, Rocketship X-M), dies at 91
  • 2007 Teddy Kollek, Israeli politician (Mayor of Jerusalem), dies at 95
  • 2007 David Perkins, Stanford University geneticist, dies at 87
  • 2007 Mauno Jokipii, Finnish professor & World War II researcher, dies at 82
  • 2007 Paek Nam-sun, North Korean Foreign Affairs minister, dies at 77
  • 2007 Sergio Jiménez, Mexican actor, dies at 69
  • 2007 Don Massengale, American golfer (PGA C'ship 1967 runner-up), dies of heart attack at 69
  • 2007 Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, American historian, dies at 65
  • 2007 Robert C. Solomon, American scholar of continental philosophy, dies at 64
  • 2007 A. Richard Newton, Australian-born technology pioneer & professor, dies at 55
  • 2007 Garry Betty, American CEO of Earthlink, dies at 49

  • 2008 Gerry Staley, American baseball pitcher (MLB All Star 1952-53, 60; St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago White Sox), dies of natural causes at 87
  • 2008 Galyani Vadhana, Princess of Naradhiwas, dies at 84
  • 2008 George MacDonald Fraser, British poet & author (Flashman at the Charge), dies at 82
  • 2008 Lee S. Dreyfus, American politician, dies at 81
  • 2009 Maria de Jesus, Portuguese supercentenarian, dies at 115
  • 2009 Jett Travolta, son of actors John Travolta and Kelly Preston, dies of a seizure at 16
  • 2010 Oscar Sala, Italian-born Brazilian nuclear physicist, dies at 87
  • 2011 Anne Francis, American actress (Honey West, Forbidden Planet, Pancho Villa), dies at 80
  • 2011 Pete Postlethwaite, English actor, dies at 64
  • 2011 Szeto Wah, Hong Kong politician & educationalist, dies at 79
  • 2011 Richard D. Winters, American Army officer, dies at 92
  • 2012 Ian Bargh, Canadian jazz pianist & composer, dies from lung cancer at 76
  • 2012 David Barron, British physicist & computer scientist, at 76 (b.1935)
  • 2012 Ivan Calin, Moldavian President & Prime Minister 1980-1990, dies at 76
  • 2012 William Carey, American businessman & philanthropist (W. P. Carey & Co.), died from complications after a heart attack at 81
  • 2012 Gordon Hirabayashi, American sociologist & opponent to Japanese-American internment, dies after Alzheimer's disease at 93
  • 2012 Larry "Rhino" Reinhardt, American rock guitarist (Iron Butterfly) dies at 63
  • 2013 Ladislao Mazurkiewicz, Uruguayan soccer goalkeeper (36 caps; Atlético Mineiro), dies from a respiratory illness at 67
  • 2013 Ned Wertimer, American actor (The Jeffersons), dies from complications from a fall at 89
  • 2013 Margaret A. Brewer, American soldier & first female general officer in US Marine Corps, dies at 82
  • 2013 Rod Hicks, American bassist (Paul Butterfield Blues Band), dies at 71
  • 2014 Elizabeth Jane Howard, English novelist, dies at 90
  • 2014 Jay Traynor, American singer (Jay and the Americans), dies of liver cancer at 70
  • 2015 "Little" Jimmy Dickens, American country singer (Grand Ole Opry), dies at 94
  • 2016 Nimr al-Nimr, Saudi Shiite religious leader & non-violent critic of the Saudi Arabian government, executed by the Saudi authorities aged 56 or 57
  • 2017 John Berger, English art critic & author (Ways of Seeing), dies at 90
  • 2017 Jean Vuarnet, French alpine skier (Olympic gold downhill 1960; World C'ship gold 1960), dies after a stroke at 83
  • 2018 Thomas Monson, 16th president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dies at 90
  • 2019 Bob Einstein, American comedian (Officer Judy, Super Dave Osborne), dies of leukemia at 76
  • 2019 Julia Grant [prev George Roberts], transgender activist featured in "A Change of Sex", dies at 64
  • 2019 "Mean" Gene Okerlund, American pro wrestling interviewer, announcer and television host (WWF, WCW), dies of kidney failure at 76
  • 2019 Daryl Dragon, American keyboardist (Captain & Tennille - "Love Will Keep Us Together") dies of kidney failure at 76
  • 2020 Sam Wyche, American NFL coach (Cincinnati Bengals 1984-91; Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1992-95; introduced no-huddle offence), dies from melanoma at 74
  • 2020 Grant Weatherstone, Scotland rugby union winger (16 caps; Edinburgh District), dies at 88
  • 2021 Don Salls, American football linebacker (Alabama) and coach (Jacksonville State University 1946-52, 1954-64), dies at 101
  • 2021 Paul Westphal, American Basketball Hall of Fame guard (NBA C'ship 1974; NBA All-Star 1977–81; Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns) and coach (NBA: Phoenix, Seattle, Sacramento), dies from glioblastoma at 70
January 2 Highlights