On This Day

Famous Deaths on May 4

  • 1406 Coluccio Salutati, Italian political leader and humanist, Chancellor of the Republic of Florence, dies at 75
  • 1436 Engelbrekt Engelbrektsson, Swedish statesman (b. 1390s)
  • 1471 Edward of Westminster, Prince of Wales, dies at 17, becoming the only heir apparent to the English throne to ever die in battle
  • 1471 Edmund Beaufort, 4th Duke of Somerset, English military commander (executed)
  • 1506 Husayn Bayqarah, ruler of Herat (b. 1438)
  • 1519 Lorenzo II de' Medici, Duke of Urbino, dies at 26
  • 1535 John Houghton, English monk, first of the Carthusian Martyrs, hung, drawn and quartered at the Tower of London
  • 1566 Luca Ghini, Italian physician and botanist (b. 1490)
  • 1594 Paul Buys, Grand Pensionary of Holland, dies at 62
  • 1604 Claudio Merulo, Italian organist and composer, dies at 71
  • 1605 Ulisse Aldrovandi, Italian biologist and naturalist, dies at 82
  • 1615 Adriaan van Roomen, Flemish mathematician (b. 1561)
  • 1626 Arthur Lake, English Bishop of Bath and Wells, and translator of the King James Bible, dies at 56
  • 1677 Isaac Barrow, English mathematician (b. 1630)
  • 1684 John Nevison, English highwayman (b. 1639)
  • 1729 Louis-Antoine, Cardinal de Noailles, French bishop and cardinal, dies at 77

  • 1734 James Thornhill, English painter
  • 1737 Eustace Budgell, English writer (The Spectator, writing 37 numbers signed X), dies at 50
  • 1752 Pieter Snyers, Flemish painter/engraver, dies at 71
  • 1770 Christian Gottfried Krause, German composer, dies at 51
  • 1774 Anthony Ulrich II, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, dies at 59
  • 1776 Jacques Saly, French sculptor, dies at 58
  • 1790 Matthew Tilghman, American delegate to the Continental Congress (b. 1718)
  • 1799 Tipu Sultan, Indian military leader killed during Battle of Seringapatam, dies at 48
  • 1811 Nikolay Kamensky, Russian general (b. 1776)
  • 1824 Joseph Joubert, French essayist and moralist (b. 1754)
  • 1832 Jan van Speyck, Dutch admiral, buried in New Church
  • 1855 Camille Pleyel, Austria piano builder/composer, dies at 66
  • 1858 Aimé Bonpland, French explorer and botanist, dies at 84 (date disputed)
  • 1859 Joseph Diez Gergonne, French mathematician, dies at 87
  • 1879 William Froude, English engineer and naval architect, dies at 68
  • 1880 Edward Clark, Governor of Texas (b. 1815)
  • 1884 Maria Anna of Savoy, Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia, dies at 80
  • 1885 Alexander Karađorđević, Prince of Serbia (1842-58), dies at 78
  • 1891 Sherlock Holmes, "dies" at Reichenbach Falls
  • 1893 George Washington Hewitt, composer, dies at 82

  • 1900 Augustus Pitt Rivers, English archaeologist, dies at 73
  • 1901 John Jones Ross, Canadian politician, 7th Premier of Quebec (1884-87), dies at 69
  • 1903 Goce Delchev, a revolutionary from the Balkans - leader of the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (b. 1872)
  • 1916 Joseph Mary Plunkett, Irish revolutionary (b. 1887)
  • 1919 Milan Rastislav Štefánik, Slovak politician, French general and astronomer (b. 1880)
  • 1922 Viktor Kingissepp, Estonian Bolshevik politician (b. 1888)
  • 1924 Edith Nesbit, British children books author (The Story of the Treasure Seekers, Five Children and It), dies at 65
  • 1928 Barry Pain, English writer (Punch), dies at 63
  • 1929 Henry Morton Dunham, composer, dies at 75
  • 1937 Noel Rosa, Brazilian songwriter, dies at 26
  • 1938 Carl von Ossietzky, German pacifist and writer (Nobel Peace Prize 1935), dies at 48
  • 1945 Fedor von Bock, German field marshal (commander in the German occupation of Austria, invasions of Poland, France, and Russia during WWII), dies at 64
  • 1953 Edward Shanks, British poet and critic, dies at 60
  • 1953 T. Tertius Noble, English composer, dies at 85
  • 1955 Georges Enesco, Romanian violinist and composer (Romanian Dances), dies at 73
  • 1955 Louis Breguet, French aviation pioneer, dies at 75
  • 1961 Anita Stewart, dies of heart attack at 66
  • 1965 Norman Brokenshire, TV moderator (Four Square Court), dies at 66
  • 1966 Juan María Thomas Sabater, Spanish composer, dies at 69
  • 1967 Bengt Axel von Torne, Finnish composer, dies at 75
  • 1969 Osbert Sitwell, English writer (Out of the Flame), dies at 76
  • 1970 4 students, at Kent State University killed by Ohio National Guard
  • 1970 William Schroeder (b. 1950)
  • 1971 Donald Dexter Van Slyke, American chemist (Micromanometric analysis), dies at 88
  • 1971 Joseph Csaky, Hungarian/French sculptor, dies at 83
  • 1971 Louis de Bree [Louis Davids], actor (De man zonder hart, The Cross-Patch, Bluejackets), dies at 87
  • 1971 Seamus Elliott, Irish road bicycle racer (first English speaker to win stages in all the Grand Tours), dies at 36
  • 1972 Edward Calvin Kendall, American chemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1886)
  • 1973 Jane Bowles, American writer and playwright, dies at 56
  • 1974 Israel Citkowitz, composer, dies at 65
  • 1974 John Wengraf, Austrian actor (12 to the Moon, Pride & Passion), dies at 77

Person of interestMoe Howard

1975 Moe Howard [Moses Horowitz], American actor and comedian (The 3 Stooges), dies at 77

Comedian Moe Howard
Comedian
Moe Howard
  • 1976 Henri Bosco, French author and poet (Gogol), dies at 87

Person of interestJosip Broz Tito

1980 Josip Broz Tito, Yugoslav communist revolutionary and leader of Yugoslavia (1943-80), dies at 87

President of Yugoslavia and Revolutionary Josip Broz Tito
President of Yugoslavia and Revolutionary
Josip Broz Tito
  • 1980 Kay Hammond, British actress (Blithe Spirit, 5 Golden Hours), dies at 71
  • 1983 Nino Sanzogno, Italian conductor (La Fenice) and composer, dies at 72
  • 1984 Diana Dors [Fluck], British actress and singer (Berserk!, Steaming), dies of cancer at 52
  • 1984 Larry Stock, American singer-songwriter (Blueberry Hill), dies at 87
  • 1984 Bob Clampett, American cartoonist (b. 1913)
  • 1985 Clarence Wiseman, the 10th General of The Salvation Army (b. 1907)
  • 1987 Cathryn Damon, American actress (Mary-Soap, She's Having a Baby), dies of cancer at 56
  • 1987 Dick Hillenius, Dutch biologist and writer, dies at 59
  • 1987 Paul Butterfield, singer/harmonica player, dies of drug abuse at 44
  • 1989 Evelle Jansen Younger, American prosecutor (Charles Manson, Sirhan Sirhan), dies at 70
  • 1990 Don Appell, American writer and director, dies at 70
  • 1991 Dennis Crosby, son of Bing, commits suicide at 54
  • 1991 George Delacorte, American philanthropist and publisher (Dell Books), dies at 96
  • 1992 Henri Guillemin, French historian, dies at 89
  • 1992 Ismael Galeano, "Commandant Franklyn" (Contra), dies
  • 1992 Vitali Andreyevich Grishchenko, Russian cosmonaut, dies at 50
  • 1992 Gregor Mackenzie, Labour Party (UK) politician (b. 1927)
  • 1994 Karl Francis Hettinger, American police officer (Onion Field survivor), dies at 59
  • 1995 Lewis T Preston, American banker (President of the World Bank 1991-95), dies at 68
  • 1995 Louis Krasner, Ukrainian-American violinist, dies at 91
  • 1996 Jean Crepin, soldier/industrialist, dies at 87

  • 1996 Stanley William Reed, cineaste, dies at 85
  • 1997 Alvin "Alvy" Moore, American comic actor (Green Acres, Scream, Intruder), dies of heart failure at 75
  • 1997 Vijayananda Dahanayake, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (1959-60), dies
  • 1999 Brinsley Ford, British art historian and CEO (National Art Collections Fund), dies at 90
  • 2001 Bonnie Lee Bakley, American murder victim (b. 1956)
  • 2005 David Hackworth, U.S. Army officer and military journalist (b. 1930)
  • 2009 Dom Deluise, American comedian, actor (b. 1933)
  • 2009 Jane Randolph, American actress (Cat People, Railroaded!), dies of complications after hip surgery at 93
  • 2010 Ernie Harwell, American sportscaster (b. 1918)
  • 2010 Zvonimir Levačić - Ševa, Croatian humorist and entertainer (b. 1943)
  • 2011 Sada Thompson, American actress (Family, Pursuit of Happiness), dies at 83
  • 2011 Mary Murphy, American actress (A Man Alone, Maggie-Investigators), dies at 80

Person of interestAdam Yauch

2012 MCA [Adam Yauch], Beastie Boys vocalist, dies from cancer at 47

Rocker Adam Yauch
Rocker
Adam Yauch
  • 2013 Christian de Duve, British cytologist and biochemist (Nobel 1974), dies from euthanasia at 95
  • 2013 Morgan Morgan-Giles, British Naval officer and politician, dies at 98
  • 2016 Ursula Mamlok, German American avant-garde composer, dies at 93
  • 2016 Robert "Bob" Bennett, American politician (U.S. Senator from Utah), dies at 82
  • 2017 William J. Baumol, American economist (Baumol’s cost disease), dies at 95
  • 2018 Paul Bloodgood, American artist, dies at 58 of Alzheimer's disease
  • 2018 Edwin G. Burrows, American historian and professor, dies at 74
  • 2018 Naser Cheshm Azar, Iranian composer, dies of a heart attack at 67
  • 2018 Renate Dorrelstein, Dutch writer and journalist, dies of cancer at 64
  • 2018 Barnet Fain, American businessman and artist, dies at 86
  • 2018 Cathy Godbold, Australian actress (The Saddle Club, Home and Away), dies of brain cancer at 43
  • 2018 Bobbie Louise Hawkins, American poet and author, dies at 87
  • 2018 Larry Hunter, American college basketball coach (Wittenberg Tigers, Ohio Bobcats, Western Carolina Catamounts), dies at 68
  • 2018 BN Vijaya Kumar, Indian politician, dies at 59 of a heart attack
  • 2018 Lionel Lamy, French footballer, dies at 74
  • 2018 Luyanda Ntshangase, South African footballer (Maritzburg United), is struck by lightning and dies at 21

Person of interestDon Shula

2020 Don Shula, American Pro Football Hall of Fame coach (Super Bowl 1972, 73; Miami Dolphins; Baltimore Colts; NFL Coach of the Year 1964, 67, 68, 72), dies at 90

NFL Head Coach Don Shula
NFL Head Coach
Don Shula
  • 2020 Alan Sutherland, New Zealand rugby union number 8 (10 caps; Marlborough), dies at 76
May 4 Highlights