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A chronology of those who died in 2014

December 25, 2014


Feb. 1

— Maximillian Schell, 83, an Austrian-born actor and fugitive from Adolf Hitler who became a Hollywood star and won an Oscar for his role as a defense attorney in “Judgment at Nuremberg,” in Innsbruck after a “sudden illness.” No details were provided.

Feb. 2

— Philip Seymour Hoffman, 46, who won an Oscar for his portrayal of writer Truman Capote and created a gallery of slackers, charlatans and other characters so vivid he was regarded as one of the world’s finest actors, in New York of an apparent drug overdose.

— Gerd Albrecht, a German conductor who led orchestras in the Czech Republic, Japan and Denmark and worked to bring music to children, in Berlin. No cause of death was given.

— William “Bunny Rugs” Clarke, 65, the husky-voiced lead singer of the internationally popular reggae band Third World, in Orlando, Florida of leukemia.

Feb. 3

— Joan Mondale, 83, wife of a former U.S. vice president who lobbied so vigorously for the arts the she was nicknamed “Joan of Arts” and redefined the role of second lady, in St. Paul, Minnesota. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 4

— Vasil Bilak 96, a former hard-line communist leader who paved the way for the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, in Bratislava, Slovakia. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 5

— Robert A. Dahl, 98, an esteemed and influential political scientist who in such books as “Who Governs” championed democracy in theory and evaluated it in practice, in Hamden, Connecticut. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 9

— Gabriel Axel, the first Dane to win an Oscar for best foreign film for “Babette’s Feast,” which he directed. Neither the place nor the cause of death was disclosed.

Feb. 10

— Shirley Temple Black 85, the dimpled, curly-haired child star who sang, danced, sobbed and grinned her way into the hearts of 1930s Depression-era moviegoers and later had a successful diplomatic career, near San Francisco. No cause of death was given.

— Els Borst, 81, a former Dutch health minister who drafted the nation’s landmark 2002 law permitting euthanasia, is found dead in her garage in Utrecht.

Feb. 12

— Sid Caesar, 91, an actor-comedian who invented television sketch comedy and gave it stature as a funhouse mirror of everyday life, in the Los Angeles area after a brief, unspecified illness.

Feb. 15

— Horst Rechelbecker, 72, an Austrian immigrant who founded the beauty products company Aveda Corp., in Osceola, Wisconsin. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 18

— Maria von Trapp, 99, the last surviving member of the famous Von Trapp Family Singers made famous in the Broadway musical and film, “The Sound of Music,” in Stowe, Vermont. No cause of death was given.

— Mavis Gallant, 91, the Montreal-born writer who carved out an international reputation as a short story author while living for decades in Paris where she died. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 19

— Miroslav Standera, 95, a fighter-pilot who fled Czechoslovakia to fight for the British and French air forces during World War II, in the Czech city of Plzen. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 23

— Alice Herz Sommer, 110, believed to be the oldest survivor of the Holocaust, whose devotion to music and to her son sustained her during two years in a Nazi prison camp and who became the subject of an Oscar-nominated documentary, in London. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 24

— Harold Ramis, 69, the bespectacled “Ghostbusters” sidekick to Bill Murray whose early grounding in live comedy led to such classics as “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” ″Caddyshack” and “Groundhog Day,” near Chicago. Ramis suffered for several years from an autoimmune disease that caused inflammation and damage to his blood vessels.

— Franny Breecher, 92, lead guitarist for Bill Haley and the Comets, who helped kick off the rock and roll era with “Rock Around the Clock” in 1955, in Norristown, Pennsylvania, of apparent natural causes.

Feb. 25

— Henry Casso, 82, a longtime civil rights leader in New Mexico who worked his way out of an orphanage to become a noted educational scholar and founder of the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He had several unspecified diseases.

Feb. 26

— Paco de Lucia, 66, one of the world’s greatest guitarists who dazzled audiences with his lightning speed flamenco rhythms and finger work, in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. No cause of death was given.

Feb. 27

— Huber Matos Benitez, 95, who helped lead the Cuban revolution as one of Fidel Castro’s key lieutenants before his efforts to resign from the burgeoning communist government landed him in prison for 20 years, in the Miami area after suffering a heart attack.

— Jan Hoet, 77, a Belgian contemporary art director who organized exhibitions in private homes and curated Germany’s Documenta art fair, in Ghent, Belgium, after a long illness.

Feb. 28

— Rotislav Belykov, 94, chief engineer on the MiG fighter planes that have been the backbone of the Soviet and Russian air forces, in Moscow of an unspecified illness.

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