Deaths in History on December 21

  • 72 Thomas the Apostle dies in Mylapore, India (according to tradition)
  • 1295 Margaret of Provence, wife of Louis IX of France. dies at about 74
  • 1308 Henry I, the Child, 1st landgrave of Hessen (1256-1308), dies at 64
  • 1375 Giovanni Boccaccio, Italian poet (Vita di Dante), dies at 62
  • 1504 Bertold von Henneberg-Römhild, German archbishop and elector (b. 1442)
  • 1549 Marguerite of Navarre, Queen of Navarre, wife of Henry II of Navarre, dies at 57
  • 1579 Vicente Masip, Spanish painter
  • 1597 Saint Peter Canisius, Dutch Jesuit Catholic priest, dies at 76
  • 1674 Rutger van Haersolte, viceroy of Overijsselse, dies at about 66
  • 1736 Alessandro Galilei, Italian architect (Cappella Corsini), dies at 45
  • 1824 James Parkinson, English physician (First description of Parkinson's disease) and political activist, dies at 69
  • 1859 Nicolaas Christiaan Kist, Dutch Reformed theologian and church historian, dies at 66
  • 1864 Archduke Louis of Austria, 14th child of Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II and Feldmarschal-Leutnant of Austrian Imperial Army, dies at 80
  • 1872 Ambrose R. Wright, American Civil War General, dies at 46
  • 1873 Francis Garnier, French explorer, dies at 34
  • 1889 Friedrich August Quenstedt, German geologist and paleontologist, dies at 80
  • 1889 J. B. Lightfoot, English theologist and bishop of Durham, dies at 61
  • 1900 Roger Wolcott, American political figure, 39th Governor of Massachusetts (b. 1847)
  • 1907 Oskar Lassar, German dermatologist (electrophysical therapy, advocated for public bath houses), dies at 58
  • 1921 P B S Pinchback, major Reconstruction politician, dies at 84
  • 1928 Luigi Cadorna, Italian fieldmarshal (WW I, Caporetto), dies at 78
  • 1933 Knud J. V. Rasmussen, Danish Pole explorer (Thule), dies at 54
  • 1935 Kurt Tucholsky, German journalist/writer (Die Weltbühne), dies after taking sleeping tablets at 45

Frank KelloggFrank Kellogg (1856-1937)

American politician and diplomat (US Secretary of State, 1925-29), tried to outlaw war (Kellogg–Briand Pact: Nobel Peace Prize, 1929), dies at 80

  • 1938 Helen Miller Shepard, American philanthropist who established Hall of Fame, dies at 70

F. Scott FitzgeraldF. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940)

American author (Great Gatsby, Zelda), dies of a heart attack at 44

Franz BoasFranz Boas (1858-1942)

German-American anthropologist and linguist (Mind of Primitive Man), dies at 84

  • 1942 Leendert Round, Dutch sculptor (Giraffen, Blijdorp), dies at 63

George S. PattonGeorge S. Patton (1885-1945)

American WWII general (Sicily, Italy and Normandy) known as "Old Blood & Guts", dies of congestive heart failure at 60

  • 1956 Lewis M Terman, psychologist (Genetic studies of genius), dies at 79
  • 1958 Lion Feuchtwanger, philosopher/writer (Der falsche Nero), dies at 74
  • 1959 Rosanjin, Japanese calligrapher, restaurateur and ceramicist (b. 1883)
  • 1964 Carl Van Vechten, American writer famous for the controversial novel "Nigger Heaven", dies at 84
  • 1967 Louis Washkansky, 18 days after 1st heart transplant, dies at 55
  • 1972 Horace Mann Bond, president of Lincoln University (Pa), dies at 70
  • 1974 James Henry Govier, British artist (b. 1910)

Marc ConnellyMarc Connelly (1890-1980)

American playwright (One Minute Please), dies at 90

  • 1983 Paul de Man, Belgian literary critic, dies at 64
  • 1986 Willy Coppens, Belgian WW I fighter ace, dies at 94
  • 1987 John Spence, founding No Doubt member (b. 1969)
  • 1988 Nikolaas Tinbergen, Dutch-British biologist and zoologist (Nobel 1973), dies at 81
  • 1990 Clarence "Kelly" Johnson, American aeronautical engineer (Lockheed Skunk Works; b. 1910)
  • 1992 Sybil Andrews, English-Canadian painter, dies at 94
  • 1993 Philip Christison, British general (Rangoon), dies at 100
  • 1995 Robert Francis Vere Heuston, professor of law, dies at 72
  • 1995 Trenchard Cox, British museum director, dies at 90
  • 1996 Barry Gray [Bernard Yaroslaw], American radio personality and interviewer (started call-in radio), dies at 80
  • 1996 Margaret E Rey, author of children's books, dies at 90
  • 1996 Olga Maria Nicolis di Robilant, Portuguese patron of the arts, dies at 96
  • 1997 Harold Roxbee Cox, Baron Kings Norton, British aeronautical engineer, dies at 95
  • 1997 Michael Lyne, air-marshal, dies at 78
  • 1998 Ernst Gunther Schenck, German doctor who joined the Sturmabteilung in 1933 {b. 1904)

Al GrossAl Gross (1918-2000)

American inventor (invented the walkie-talkie), dies at 82

  • 2000 Edward Miller, British historian and Master (Fitzwilliam College Cambridge), dies at 85
  • 2003 Prince Alfonso of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, Spanish playboy and businessman (b. 1924)
  • 2004 Autar Singh Paintal, Indian medical scientist, dies at 79
  • 2006 Saparmurat Niyazov, President of Turkmenistan (b. 1940)
  • 2007 Ken Hendricks, American businessman (b. 1941)
  • 2013 Eli Beeding, American Air Force Captain and rocket test pilot, dies at 85
  • 2014 Sonia d’Artois, British Canadian WWII resistance agent, dies at 90
  • 2015 David Emms, British educator (London Goodenough Trust), dies at 90
  • 2017 Bruce McCandless II, American aviator, electrical engineer and astronaut who made the 1st untethered space walk (STS 41B, STS-31), dies at 80