On This Day

Famous Deaths on July 20

  • 833 Ansegis/Ansegius, French abbot of Fontenelle/author, dies at about 63
  • 985 Antipope Boniface VII (974, 984–985)
  • 1031 Robert II of France [the Pious, the Wise], King of the Franks (996-1031), dies during a civil war at 59
  • 1156 Emperor Toba of Japan (b. 1103)
  • 1160 Peter Lombard, French theologian
  • 1201 Agnes of France, queen of France, dies [or 7/18]
  • 1320 King Oshin of Armenia (b. 1282)
  • 1322 Frederik II van Sierck, bishop of Utrecht (1317-22), dies
  • 1351 Margaretha Ebner, German visionary (b. 1291)
  • 1387 Robert IV of Artois, Count of Eu (poisoned) (b. 1356)
  • 1398 Roger Mortimer, 4th Earl of March, heir to the throne of England, dies at 24
  • 1453 Enguerrand de Monstrelet, French chronicler
  • 1454 Johan II, King of Castile, dies at 49
  • 1524 Claude of France, Duchess of Brittany and wife of Francis I of France, dies at 24
  • 1573 Lancelot of Brederode, water beggar, beheaded
  • 1597 Franciscus Raphelengius [French of Ravelingen], Neth publisher, dies

  • 1607 Paulus Merula, Dutch lawyer and historian (Historia Belgica), dies at 48
  • 1609 Federico Zuccari, Italian Mannerist painter, dies at about 69
  • 1616 Hugh O'Neill, 3rd Earl of Tyrone, Irish soldier
  • 1636 John Oldham, trader in Mass, murdered by indians
  • 1704 Peregrine White, First English child born in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, dies at 83
  • 1732 Francesco Bartolomeo Conti, composer, dies at 51
  • 1752 John C Pepusch, English composer (Beggar's Opera), dies at about 85
  • 1762 Christoph Nichelmann, German composer and harpsichordist, dies at 44
  • 1766 Isabelle Farnese, queen of Spain, dies
  • 1808 François-Hippolyte Barthélémon, French composer, dies at 66
  • 1816 Gavrila Romanovich Derzhavin, Russian poet (b. 1743)
  • 1819 John Playfair, Scottish geologist/mathematician, dies
  • 1824 Joan Melchior Kemper, Dutch lawyer (designed civil code law book), dies at 48
  • 1825 Joseph-Denis Doche, French composer, dies at 58
  • 1859 Hans E Schack, Danish politician/writer (Fantasy), dies
  • 1866 Faa di Bruno, Italian captain (Er d'italia, Lissa), commits suicide
  • 1866 Berhard Riemann, German mathematician (zeta-function), dies at 39
  • 1868 Antoine Prumier, French harpist and composer, dies at 75
  • 1868 Johann Friedrich Kittl, Czech composer, dies at 62
  • 1881 Thomas Fermor-Hesketh, English 1st baron of Hesketh, dies

  • 1888 Henri Braekeleer, Flemish painter, dies at 48
  • 1893 Tom Kelly, Australian cricketer (two Tests for Australia 1877-79, 64 runs), dies at 49
  • 1897 Jean Ingelow, English poet (b. 1820)
  • 1897 Philip Dale Roddey, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 71
  • 1898 Yuri Karlovich Arnold, Russian composer, dies at 86
  • 1901 William Cosmo Monkhouse, English poet and critic (b. 1840)

Person of interestLeo XIII

1903 Leo XIII [Vincenzo G Pecci], 256th Pope (1878-1903), dies at 93

256th Pope Leo XIII
256th Pope
Leo XIII
  • 1908 Federico Chueca, Spanish composer, dies at 62
  • 1908 Demetrius Vikelas, Greek author, president of the International Olympic Committee (b. 1835)
  • 1912 Andrew Lang, Scottish poet, novelist, literary critic, and anthropologist (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books), dies at 68
  • 1914 Leo van Gheluwe, Belgian composer, dies at 76
  • 1922 Andrey Markov, Russian mathematician (Markov Chain), dies at 66
  • 1923 Pancho Villa [José Doroteo Arango Arámbula], Mexican revolutionary general and guerrilla leader,, murdered at 55
  • 1926 Felix Dzerzhinsky [Iron Felix, Bloody Felix], Soviet statesman, established and developed Soviet secret police (Cheka, forerunner to the KGB), dies at 48
  • 1927 Ferdinand I VAM, King of Romania (1914-27), dies at 61
  • 1928 Kostas Karyotakis, Greek poet, dies at 31
  • 1932 René Bazin, French novelist (b. 1853)
  • 1936 Arthur Battelle Whiting, American composer and teacher, dies at 75
  • 1936 Jose Sanjurjo, Spanish general (Morocco) and high director, dies at 64

Person of interestGuglielmo Marconi

1937 Guglielmo Marconi, Italian inventor and electrical engineer who pioneered work on long distance radio transmission (Nobel 1909), dies of a heart attack at 63

Inventor and Nobel Laureate Guglielmo Marconi
Inventor and Nobel Laureate
Guglielmo Marconi
  • 1939 Joseph Mendes da Costa, sculptor, dies
  • 1940 Y G Van de Peat, Dutch director of employment, commits suicide
  • 1941 Lew Fields, American vaudeville performer (b. 1867)
  • 1942 Patric Cobb, British sea officer, dies in battle
  • 1944 Arthur J Treadwell, English mayor of Stoke Newington, dies at about 71
  • 1944 Brandt, col/German staff chief, dies in bombing
  • 1944 Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg, count/German antifascist colonel, dies
  • 1944 Friedrich Olbricht, German general (July 20th plotter), executed
  • 1944 Heinz Burns, German (Olympic gold 1936), dies in bombing
  • 1944 Korten, chef gen of Germany Luftwaffe, dies in bomb explosion
  • 1944 Ludwig Beck, German general (July 20th plot), dies at 64
  • 1944 Mertz, German colonel (July 20th plotter), executed
  • 1944 Rudolf Schmundt, German general /Hitler's Army adjunct, dies from wounds in attempt to assassinate Hitler at 48
  • 1944 Werner von Haeffen, German lieutenant (July 20th plotter), executed
  • 1944 Mildred Harris, American actress (b. 1901)
  • 1945 Arthur Seccull, South African cricketer (Test v England 1896), dies
  • 1945 Paul Valéry [Ambroise Paul Toussaint Jules Valéry], French author, philosopher and poet (La Jeune Parque), dies at 73
  • 1951 Abdullah Ibn Hussein, Jordan's King (1946-51), killed in Jerusalem
  • 1951 Mustafa Shuqri Ashu, tailor/murderer of king Abdullah, shot to death
  • 1951 Wilhelm, the last Crown Prince of the German Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia, dies at 69
  • 1953 Dumarsaid Estime, President of Haiti (b. 1900)
  • 1953 Jan Struther, British author (b. 1901)
  • 1954 Blair Moody, (Sen-Mich), dies at 52
  • 1956 Ken Burn, cricketer (Tasmanian rep on 1890 Ashes tour, 2 Tests), dies
  • 1956 James Alexander Calder, Canadian politician, dies at 87
  • 1957 Phil Hanna, singer (Once Upon a Tune), dies at 46
  • 1958 Franklin Pangborn, American actor (My Best Gal, Hats Off, Easy Living), dies at 69
  • 1959 Harry Fox [Arthur Carringford], American vaudeville dancer, comedian and actor (Talent Scout), dies at 77
  • 1959 William D. Leahy, American admiral and chief of staff during WWII, dies at 84
  • 1962 Andre Renard, Belgium worker's union leader (MSU), dies at 51
  • 1962 George MacAulay Trevelyan, English royal historian, dies at 86
  • 1964 Anna Vyrubova, Russian lady-in-waiting, the best friend and confidante of Tsaritsa Alexandra Fyodorovna, dies at 80
  • 1966 Julien Carette, French actor (Sylvia & the Phantom), dies of burns at 68
  • 1968 Joseph Keilberth, German conductor (Bayreuther Festival), dies at 60
  • 1969 Roy Hamilton, American singer (You'll Never Walk Alone), dies at 40

  • 1970 Iain Macleod, Conservative Party Politician and Chancellor of Exchequer at time of his death (b. 1913)

Person of interestBruce Lee

1973 Bruce Lee [Lee Yuen Kam], Hong Kong and American martial artist and actor (Enter the Dragon), dies at 32

Martial Artist and Actor Bruce Lee
Martial Artist and Actor
Bruce Lee
  • 1973 Robert Smithson, American land artist (b. 1938)
  • 1974 Allen Jenkins, American actor (Hey Jeannie, Top Cop, Girl Habit), dies at 74
  • 1976 Tom Lowry, cricketer (early New Zealand Test captain), dies
  • 1976 Samuel Mutendi, founder of the Zimbabwean Zion Christian Church, dies
  • 1977 Carter DeHaven, American actor (Courage, Great Dictator), dies at 90
  • 1977 Gary Kellgren, American music producer who cofounded The Record Plant studios, drowns along with his girlfriend at 38
  • 1982 Okot p'Bitek, Ugandan poet (b. 1931)
  • 1983 Frank Reynolds, news anchor (ABC Evening News), dies at 59
  • 1984 Gail Kubik, American composer (Gerald McBoing Boing), dies at 69
  • 1984 Jim Fixx, American jogger and writer (Jim Fixx on Running), dies at 52
  • 1985 Bruno de Finetti, Italian probabilist statistician and actuary, dies at 79
  • 1986 Helen Craig, American actress (Snake Pit, They Live by Night), dies at 74
  • 1987 Richard Egan, American actor (Empire, Redigo, Pollyanna), dies of cancer at 63
  • 1989 Marie-Madeleine Fourcade, commander (French resistance), dies
  • 1989 Mary Treen, actress (Career, Rock-a-bye Baby), dies at 71
  • 1990 Sara Heyblom, Dutch actress (Obsessions, Pygmalion), dies
  • 1990 Herbert Jenkins, Atlanta's longest serving police chief (b. 1907)
  • 1991 Rellys [Henri Marius Bourrelly], French actor (Letters from My Windmill), dies at 86
  • 1991 Earl Robinson, American composer, dies in a car accident at 81
  • 1993 Vince Foster, American lawyer and Deputy White House Counsel commits suicide aged 48
  • 1994 Paul Delvaux, Belgian surrealist painter, dies at 96
  • 1994 Reginald Hall, endocrinologist, dies at 83
  • 1995 Helmut Gernsheim, German photographer, collector and historian, dies at 82
  • 1995 Natalia Dmitrevna Shpiller, singer, dies at 85
  • 1995 Ernest Mandel, Belgian philosopher and economist (Marxist), dies at 72
  • 1996 Colin Campbell Mitchell, soldier, dies at 70
  • 1996 Peter Malcolm Gordon Raleigh, journalist, dies at 77
  • 1997 Linda Stirling, college prof/B movie actress (Pretender), dies at 75

  • 1997 Clifford McWatt, West Indian cricket wicketkeeper (6 Tests, 10 dismissals), dies in a car crash at 75
  • 1998 June Byers, American professional wrestler (b. 1922)
  • 1999 Sandra Gould, American actress (b. 1916)
  • 2000 Gregory Hill (also known as Malaclypse the Younger,) American writer (Principia Discordia), dies at 59
  • 2001 Carlo Giuliani, Italian anarchist (b. 1978)
  • 2002 Michalis Kritikopoulos, Greek soccer striker (28 caps; Olympiacos), dies from cardiac arrest at 56
  • 2003 Nicolas Freeling, English writer (b. 1927)
  • 2004 Adi Lady Lala Mara, Fiji chieftainess, wife of Kamisese Mara (b. 1931)
  • 2005 James Doohan, Canadian actor (Star Trek), dies from Pulmonary fibrosis at 85
  • 2005 Finn Gustavsen, Norwegian politician (b. 1926)
  • 2005 Kayo Hatta, American film director (b. 1958)
  • 2006 Ted Grant, British Trotskyist (b. 1913)
  • 2006 Gérard Oury, French filmmaker (b. 1919)
  • 2006 Robert Cornthwaite, American actor (Thing, War of the Worlds, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?), dies of natural causes at 89
  • 2007 Tammy Faye Bakker (Messner), American Christian singer and former wife of Jim Bakker (The PTL Club), dies at 65
  • 2007 Ivor Emmanuel, Welsh singer and actor (Zulu, Show Boat, Kiss Me, Kate), dies of a stroke at 79
  • 2007 Bill Flemming, American journalist and sportscaster (ABC's Wide World of Sports), dies at 80
  • 2008 Artie Traum, American guitarist (b. 1943)
  • 2009 Ria Brieffies, Dutch singer (b. 1957)
  • 2011 Lucian Freud, German-British artist (Benefits Supervisor Sleeping, Boy With a Rat), dies at 88
  • 2012 Dorothy Germain Porter, American golfer (US Curtis Cup winning captain 1966), dies at 88
  • 2012 Simon Ward, English actor, dies at 70
  • 2012 Sir Alastair Burnet [James William Alexander Burnet], British journalist and broadcaster (News at Ten), dies at 84
  • 2015 Elio Fiorucci, Italian fashion designer, dies at 80
  • 2016 Wayne Carson, American country musician and songwriter (Always On My Mind), dies at 73
  • 2017 Chester Bennington, American singer and songwriter (Linkin Park), commits suicide at 41
  • 2019 Peter McNamara, Australian tennis player (Australian Open doubles 1979, Wimbledon doubles 1980, 82), dies of prostate cancer at 64
July 20 Highlights