obituaries

Joe McGinniss: The Journalist As ‘Psychological Detective’

Posted on 03/11/2014 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacySome writers are myth-makers. Joe McGinniss, who died on March 10 at age 71 in Worchester, Mass., was the opposite. Whether McGinniss was writing about the repackaging of Richard Nixon in The Selling of the President 1968 or Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald in the 1983 book Fatal Vision, McGinness liked to get up close and personal with a subject, gradually peel away a carefully crafted public persona like the leaves of an artichoke. In doing so, he usually became part of the story …

Nelson Mandela: 5 Musical Tributes to a Remarkable Hero

Posted on 12/5/2013 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacyNelson Mandela, who died Dec. 5 at age 95 in Johannesburg, South Africa, was one of the most remarkable heroes of the 20th century. He organized and led armed resistance against South Africa’s apartheid regime, which had disenfranchised 23 million black citizens and forced them to live in abysmal poverty, and endured decades of brutal imprisonment as a result. But after his release in 1990, he worked to negotiate a peaceful end to institutionalized racism — an achievement that earned …

Lou Reed: He Walked on the Wild Side

Posted on 10/27/2013 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacyAt his best, Lou Reed was to rock music what Jean Genet was to literature — a chronicler of an unsavory, lubricious underworld who compelled us to see beauty and grace in the dissipated and disturbing. As leader of the Velvet Underground, the Brooklyn native, who died on Oct. 27 at age 71, helped provide the soundtrack for the Exploding Plastic Inevitable, artist Andy Warhol’s avant-garde multimedia scene in the late 1960s, performing songs on then-taboo topics ranging from drug use …

Bea Kozera: Jack Kerouac’s Lost Lover

Posted on 08/30/2013 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacyIf you’ve read Jack Kerouac’s 1957 novel On The Road, you probably remember the heart-rending section in which protagonist Sal Paradise, who’s waiting to catch a bus from Bakersfield to Los Angeles, suddenly spies “the cutest little Mexican girl in slacks coming across my sight.” Suddenly lovestruck, Sal rushes to jump instead onto the bus that the woman is boarding, and spends five minutes trying to find the courage to offer her his raincoat to use as a pillow. Sal …

Dennis Farina: He Didn’t Just Play a Detective on TV

Posted on 07/22/2013 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacySome actors are pretty good at playing hard-boiled, streetwise police detectives. Dennis Farina, who died on July 22 at age 69 in Scottsdale, Ariz., actually was a hard-boiled, streetwise police detective who also turned out to be a pretty good actor. The Chicago native, an 18-year veteran of his city’s police force who took up acting as a second career, was best known for his stint from 2004 to 2006 on the long-running NBC police procedural Law & Order. See also: TV …

How Professional Dog Walking Got Its Start

Posted on 07/15/2013 by | Who's News | Comments

LegacyIn 1964, then New York Times reporter and later book author Gay Talese wrote a short profile of a man who had embarked on what seemed like a unique, exotic profession. Jim Buck walked other people’s dogs — 30 or 4o of them a day — while their owners were at work. Talese marveled at how Buck — a slender 145 pounds at six feet in height — managed a 150-pound Great Dane, a pair of Labrador Retrievers, and several other dogs all …