Historical Figures Who Died in 1997

Deaths 1 - 200 of 333

  • Jan 1 James B. Pritchard, American theologist & archaeologist, dies at 87
  • Jan 4 Harry B Helmsley, American billionaire real estate developer (purchased Empire State Building, 1961), dies at 87
  • Jan 5 Andre Franquin, cartoonist, dies at 72
  • Jan 6 Ian Peter Leslie Smith, British journalist, dies at 52
  • Jan 6 Litz Pisk, movement teacher, dies at 87
  • Jan 7 Desmond Flower, English publisher, dies at 89
  • Jan 8 Melvin Calvin, scientist, dies at 85
  • Jan 8 Phyllis Hartnoll, writer/editor, dies at 90
  • Jan 9 Edward Osobka-Morawski, prime minister of Poland (1945-47), dies
  • Jan 9 Junaidu ibn Buhari, scholar, dies at 90
  • Jan 10 Alexander R. Todd, British chemist (Nobel Prize 1957), dies at 89
  • Jan 10 Darrell A. Amyx, American classical archaeologist (Greek Ceramics), dies at 85
  • Jan 10 Elspeth Huxley, English author (The Flame Trees of Thika and The Mottled Lizard), dies at 89
  • Jan 10 Hilary Grover Barratt Brown, conservationist, dies at 71
  • Jan 10 Shiv Verma, Indian revolutionary soldier, dies at 88
  • Jan 11 Helen Foster Snow, American journalist (reported from China in the 1930s), dies at 89
  • Jan 12 Charles Huggins, American-Canadian physician and cancer researcher (1966 Nobel Prize), dies at 95
  • Jan 12 Jean Writer-Edern Hallier, dies at 60
  • Jan 13 William Mills, painter, dies at 74
  • Jan 14 Dollard Ménard, French Canadian general (b. 1913)
  • Jan 15 Jose Ignacio Domecq, Spanish wine maker, dies at 82
  • Jan 15 Kenneth Thimann, English American botanist (Balzan Prize), dies at 92
  • Jan 16 Ennis Cosby, son of Bill Cosby, murdered on LA highway at 29
  • Jan 16 Stephen Fitz-Simon, entrepreneur, dies at 59
  • Jan 17 Amha Selassie, Crown prince of Ethiopia and son of emperor Haile Selassi, dies at 82
  • Jan 17 Andrea Fisher, American artist, dies at 41
  • Jan 17 Bert Kelly, Australian politician (b. 1912)
  • Jan 17 Clyde William Tombaugh, discoverer (Pluto), dies at 90
  • Jan 18 Paul Tsongas, American politician (Sen-D-Mass), dies of complications from pneumonia and non-Hodgkin lymphoma at 55
  • Jan 19 George Armin Goyder, businessman/social philosopher, dies at 88
  • Jan 19 James Dickey, American poet, novelist and lecturer (Deliverance, Buckdancer's Choice), dies at 73
  • Jan 20 Edith Haisman, the oldest survivor of Titanic, dies at 100
  • Jan 20 Vladimir Yamnikov, owner (Kristall vodka), dies of cirrhosis at 56
  • Jan 21 Colonel Tom Parker [Andreas Cornelis van Kuijk], Dutch-born talent manager (Elvis Presley), dies at 87
  • Jan 21 Dennis Main-Wilson, British TV and radio producer (Marty, Till Death Us Do Part), dies of lung cancer at 72
  • Jan 21 Michael Duane, British progressive educationalist and author, dies at 81
  • Jan 22 Mollie Panter-Downes, British writer and columnist (The Shoreless Sea), dies at 90
  • Jan 22 Pilar Barbosa, Puerto Rican historian and political activist, dies at 98
  • Jan 23 Jeremy Maas, British writer and art dealer, dies at 68
  • Jan 23 Laura "Dinky" Patterson, dies bungee jumping at Super Bowl rehearsal at 43
  • Jan 23 Randy Greenawalt, American convicted killer, executed by injection at 47
  • Jan 23 Roger John Tayler, British astrophysicist (author of The Origin of the Chemical Elements), dies at 67
  • Jan 24 Callum Alexander MacDonald, Scottish historian, dies of cancer at 49
  • Jan 25 Jean Dixon, psychic (Gift of Prophecy), dies of a heart attack at 79
  • Jan 26 Jeane Dixon, American astrologer (b. 1904)
  • Jan 26 Margaret Hesse, princess of Hesse/the Rhine, dies at 83
  • Jan 27 Cecil Arthur Lewis, British fighter pilot and writer, dies at 98
  • Jan 28 Colin Welch, British political journalist and critic of Enid Blyton's Noddy series, dies at 72
  • Jan 28 Pietro Cavallero, bandit, dies at 68
  • Jan 28 Vivien Signy, nurse, dies at 80
  • Jan 29 Eric Schneider, American murderer of 2 teachers, executed in MO at 35
  • Jan 29 Louis Pauwels, French writer and editor, dies at 76
  • Jan 29 Osvaldo Soriano, Argentine writer and journalist, dies of cancer at 54
  • Jan 30 Frank Tejeda, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Texas), dies at 51
  • Jan 31 John Joseph Scanlan, Irish Catholic prelate (b. 1930)
  • Feb 1 Herb Caen, American columnist (SF Chronicle), dies of lung cancer, at 80
  • Feb 1 Mitchell Goodman, American writer, dies at 71
  • Feb 1 Peter Morris, British historian of France, dies at 50
  • Feb 2 Godfrey Baseley, British radio executive, dies at 92
  • Feb 2 Infanta Luisa Fernanda, Duchess of Montpensier, dies at 65
  • Feb 3 Bohumil Hrabal, Czech writer (Closely Observed Trains), dies at 82
  • Feb 3 William Geoffrey Biddle, English bomb disposal expert, dies at 79
  • Feb 4 James Friell, Scottish political cartoonist (Daily Worker), dies at 84
  • Feb 5 John Richard Patterson, businessman, dies at 51
  • Feb 5 Pamela Harriman, US Ambassador (to France), dies of stroke at 76
  • Feb 6 Anne Wadman, Dutch critic and writer who wrote in Frisian (Fioele & faem, Smearlappen), dies at 77
  • Feb 10 Matthew Eappen of Newton Massachusetts (b. 1996)
  • Feb 10 Milton Cato, 1st Prime Minister of San Vincent and the Grenadines (1979-84), dies at 82
  • Feb 12 Nora Beloff, journalist, dies at 78
  • Feb 12 Walter Ritchie, British sculptor (Man's Struggle), dies at 77
  • Feb 13 Mark Krasnosel'skii, Russian-Ukrainian mathematician (nonlinear functional analysis), dies at 76
  • Feb 16 Chien-Shiung Wu, Chinese-American experimental physicist (conduced the Wu experiment), dies at 84
  • Feb 17 Zein Isa, Palestinian militant imprisoned in the United States for the honor killing of his daughter
  • Feb 18 Emily Hahn, American writer, dies at 92
  • Feb 18 Enrique Peralta Azurdia, Colonel and military President of Guatemala (1963-66), dies at 88

Deng XiaopingDeng Xiaoping (1904-1997)

Feb 19 Chinese revolutionary and paramount leader of China (1978-92), dies of a lung infection and Parkinson's disease at 92

  • Feb 21 Kenneth Rowntree, British painter, dies at 81
  • Feb 21 Michael Hollings, British Catholic priest/crusader, dies at 75
  • Feb 22 Albert Shanker, American labor leader (Amer Fed of Teachers), dies at 68
  • Feb 22 Austin Andrew Wright, British sculptor, dies at 85
  • Feb 22 Joseph Aiuppa, American gangster (b. 1907)
  • Feb 23 Oscar Lewenstein, British impresario, dies at 80
  • Feb 25 Andrei Donatovich Sinyavsky, Russian writer and critic, dies at 71
  • Feb 26 Nuccio Bertone, Italian automobile designer, dies at 82
  • Feb 27 Kingsley Davis, American sociologist and demographer (coined the term "population explosion"), dies at 88
  • Mar 3 Stanislav Shatalin, Russian economist (500 Days), dies
  • Mar 4 Robert H. Dicke, American physicist (b. 1916)
  • Mar 5 Samm Sinclair Baker, American diet author (b. 1909)
  • Mar 6 Anthony Hopkins, English clinical neurologist and Director of the Research Unit at the Royal College of Physicians, dies at 59
  • Mar 6 Cheddi Jagan, Guyanese politician, 'Father of the Nation' Guyanese Premier (1953, 1957-64), dies at 78
  • Mar 6 Michael Manley, Jamaican PM (PNP, 1972-80, 89-92), dies
  • Mar 7 E. H. Bronner, German-American soap magnate (b. 1908)
  • Mar 7 Edward Mills Purcell, American physicist (Nobel 1952), dies at 84
  • Mar 7 Geraldine Clinton Little, Irish poet (A Little Bouquet), dies at 73
  • Mar 8 Alexander Salkind, producer (Superman), dies at 75
  • Mar 8 Raymond Edwards, American doo-wop bass (The Silhouettes - "Get A Job"), dies of cancer at 72
  • Mar 9 Terry Nation, writer (Dr Who, Blake 7) at 66
  • Mar 11 Lars Ahlin, Swedish writer (My Death is My Own), dies at 81
  • Mar 14 Fred Zinnemann Austrian-American director (From Here to Eternity, Julia), dies of a heart attack at 89
  • Mar 14 John Curtis Jr, American executive (Luby's Cafe), commits suicide at 49
  • Mar 14 Jurek Becker, Polish-born German writer (Jacob the Liar), dies at 59
  • Mar 14 Lucy Kroll, American talent agent, dies at 87
  • Mar 15 Victor Vasarely, Hungarian-French painter and author (Op Art), dies at 90
  • Mar 19 Willem De Kooning, Dutch artist (Abstract), dies of Alzheimer at 92
  • Mar 20 Carlo Fassi, figure skating coach (Fleming, Hamill), dies at 67
  • Mar 20 Grace Hefner, mother of Hugh Hefner (Playboy), dies at 101
  • Mar 20 V. S. Pritchett, British literary critic and writer (Myth Makers), dies at 96
  • Mar 21 Wilbert Awdry, English Anglican cleric and children's writer (Thomas the Tank Engine), dies at 85
  • Mar 24 Martin Caidin, American aviation writer, dies at 69
  • Mar 25 Roberto Sanchez Vilella, governor of Puerto Rico in (1965-69), dies
  • Mar 26 Marshall Applewhite, American cult leader (Heaven's Gate), dies leading a mass suicide at 65
  • Mar 31 Edwin Alberian, TV celebrity (Clarabell), dies at 76
  • Mar 31 Laxmishankar Pathak, food retailer, dies at 62
  • Apr 1 Jolie Gabor, Hungarian-American jeweler and mother of Zsa Zsa & Eva, dies at 100 (birth date disputed)
  • Apr 1 Nancy Woodhull, news editor (USA Today), dies of cancer at 52
  • Apr 1 Norman Carr, British conservationist working in Central and Southern Africa, dies at 84
  • Apr 4 Vladimir Solouchin, Russian writer, dies at 72

Allen GinsbergAllen Ginsberg (1926-1997)

Apr 5 American beat poet (Howl, The Fall of America) and 1960s counterculture icon, dies of liver cancer via complications of hepatitis at 70

  • Apr 5 Alparslan Turkes, Turkish politician (MHP), dies
  • Apr 6 Stephan Hermlin, German writer, dies at 81
  • Apr 7 Georgy Shonin, Soviet cosmonaut (Soyuz 6), dies of a heart attack at 61
  • Apr 8 Charles Hayes, American politician (Rep-D-IL, 1983-93), dies at 79
  • Apr 9 Helene Hanff, author (84 Charing Cross Road), dies at 80
  • Apr 10 Francis Walder [Francois Waldburger], Belgian author, dies at 90
  • Apr 11 Michael Dorris, writer, commits suicide at 52

George WaldGeorge Wald (1906-1997)

Apr 12 American physiologist and biologist (Nobel Prize 1967, vitamin A in retina), dies at 90

  • Apr 13 Dorothy Frooks, American author & military figure, dies at 101
  • Apr 15 Sam Moskowitz, American writer & historian of science fiction, dies at 76
  • Apr 15 Zdenek Mlynar, Czech politician (secretary of the Czechoslovak communist party, 1968–70), dies at 66
  • Apr 16 Doris Angleton, American socialite, murdered at 46
  • Apr 16 Emilio Azcarraga Milmo, American Mexican media tycoon (Televisa), dies at 66
  • Apr 16 Roland Topor, French illustrator (b. 1938)
  • Apr 17 Allan Francovich, American documentarian
  • Apr 17 Chaim Herzog, 6th President of Israel (1983-93), dies at 78
  • Apr 18 Edward Barker, English cartoonist, dies at 46
  • Apr 21 Andres Rodriguez, Paraguayan president (1989-93), dies
  • Apr 21 Diosdado Macapagal, President of the Philippines (1961-65), dies at 86

Eugene StonerEugene Stoner (1922-1997)

Apr 24 American firearms designer and inventor of the M16, dies of cancer at 74

  • Apr 26 Peng Zhen, mayor of Beijing China (1951-66), dies at 94
  • Apr 28 Ann Lane Petry, American journalist & author (Street), dies at 88
  • Apr 28 Susan Seddon Boulet, American artist, dies of cancer at 45
  • Apr 29 Mike Royko, American journalist (Chicago Daily News) and author (Boss), dies of stroke at 64
  • Apr 29 Peter Tali Coleman, Governor of American Samoa (1956-61, 78-85, 89-93), dies at 77
  • May 1 Bebe, AKA Flipper, dolphin, dies at 40
  • May 2 Paulo Freire, Brazilian educator and philosopher (critical pedagogy), dies at 75
  • May 2 Queen Mother Moore, African-American civil rights activist and humanitarian, dies at 98
  • May 4 Vijayananda Dahanayake, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka (1959-60), dies
  • May 8 Kai-Uwe Von Hassel, German President of Bundestag (CDU 1969-72), dies at 84
  • May 10 Joan [Joanie] Weston, American roller derby queen (Bay Bombers), dies at 61
  • May 13 Laurie Lee, English poet and author (I Can't Stay Long), dies at 82
  • May 14 Harry Blackstone, Jr., American stage magician (Blackstone Book of Magic & Illusion), dies of cancer at 62
  • May 14 Princess Caradja-Kretzulesco, descendant of Dracula, dies at 76
  • May 16 Elbridge Durbrow, American diplomat (b. 1903)
  • May 19 Millie, dog of US President George H. W. Bush (Millie's Book), dies at 12
  • May 20 Virgilio Boat, president of Colombia (1986-90), dies
  • May 22 A. D. Hershey, American biologist, worked with bacteriophages (Nobel 1969), dies at 88
  • May 25 Muhammad Fadhel, Iraqi politician, Prime Minister of Iraq (1953-54), dies at 94
  • May 26 Manfred Von Ardenne, German scientific pioneer, dies at 90
  • May 29 John Sengstacke, publisher (Defender), dies at 84
  • May 31 Anton Zischka, Austrian writer (Lebendiges Europa), dies at 92
  • May 31 James Bennett Griffin, American archaeologist, dies at 92
  • May 31 Rosie Will Monroe, American WW II icon (Rosie the riveter), dies at 76
  • Jun 1 Nikolai Tikhonov, Soviet politician (Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union 1980-85), dies at 92
  • Jun 4 Kurt Alfred Adler, therapist/writer, dies at 92
  • Jun 5 J Anthony Lukas, writer (Pulitizer, Common Ground), suicide at 64
  • Jun 8 George Turner, Australian author (b. 1916)
  • Jun 9 Stanley Knowles, Canadian politician (b. 1908)
  • Jun 11 Thalassa Cruso, English-American gardening expert (The Mike Douglas Show; The Tonight Show), dies of Alzheimer's at 88
  • Jun 14 Henry C Gordon, USAF/astronaut (Dynasoar), dies at 71
  • Jun 14 Tesslynn O'Cull, American child abuse victim (b. 1995)
  • Jun 16 Dal Stivens, Australian author, dies at 85
  • Jun 18 Lev Kopelev, Russian writer and dissident (b. 1912)
  • Jun 21 Fidel Velázquez Sánchez, Mexican labor leader, dies at 97
  • Jun 23 "Wino" Willie Forkner, American biker (Wild One), dies of a heart attack at 77

Betty ShabazzBetty Shabazz (1940-1997)

Jun 23 American educator and civil rights activist who was the widow of Malcolm X, dies from burns suffered in a fire started by her young grandson at 63

  • Jun 24 Jacques Van der Schueren, Belgian minister of Economic Affairs, dies at 75

Jacques CousteauJacques Cousteau (1910-1997)

Jun 25 French oceanic explorer (Calypso), dies of a heart attack at 87

  • Jun 25 William Lyle Woratzeck, American convicted killer, executed in Arizona at 51
  • Jun 30 Albus Dumbledore [Professor Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore], fictional character, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, dies at 115
  • Jul 1 Joshua Hassan, first Chief Minister of Gibraltar (1964-69, 72-87), dies at 81
  • Jul 4 Amado Carrillo Fuentes, Mexican drug lord (Juárez Cartel), dies at 40
  • Jul 13 Michael Jaffe, English professor and museum director (Fitzwilliam Museum), dies at 74
  • Jul 13 Miguel Ángel Blanco, Spanish politician (b. 1968)

Gianni VersaceGianni Versace (1946-1997)

Jul 15 Italian fashion designer (Versace), shot and murdered by Andrew Cunanan at 50

  • Jul 16 Dora Maar, French photographer, painter and poet, lover of Picasso, dies at 89
  • Jul 18 Eugene M. Shoemaker, American planetary scientist and geologist (Shoemaker-Levy comet), dies at 69
  • Jul 24 Andrew Cunanan, American serial killer (Gianni Versace), commits suicide at 27
  • Jul 24 Saw Maung, general/president of Myanmar (Burma) (1988-92), dies
  • Jul 24 William J. Brennan, Jr. American Supreme Court judge (1956-90), dies at 91
  • Jul 25 Margaret Farrer, midwife, dies at 83
  • Jul 28 Seni Pramoj, Prime Minister of Thailand (1945-46, 75, 76), dies

Bảo ĐạiBảo Đại (1913-1997)

Jul 30 Vietnamese emperor and chief of state (Annam 1926-1945; State of Vietnam, 1949-1955), dies at 85

  • Jul 31 Edith Fore, pitchwoman (I've fallen and I can't get up!), dies at 81
  • Jul 31 Ulrich Ernst Simon, German-Jewish Anglican theologian, dies at 63
  • Aug 1 Ngiratkel Etpison, president of Palau (1989-92), dies

William S. BurroughsWilliam S. Burroughs (1914-1997)

Aug 2 American writer (Naked Lunch, The Nova Trilogy) and visual artist, dies of a heart attack at 83

  • Aug 3 Pietro Rizzuto, Italian-Canadian politician (Senator for Repentigny, Quebec, 1976-97), dies at 83
  • Aug 4 Jeanne Calment, world's oldest person (born Feb 21, 1875), dies at 122 years, 164 days
  • Aug 5 Clarence M. Kelley, American 2nd Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (1973-77), dies at 85
  • Aug 5 Don Steele, LA radio personality (KRTH), dies of cancer at 61