Obituaries in the News
The Associated Press
Mar. 01, 1999
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Michael Angelo Avallone, a mystery writer who penned the Ed Noon series and whose original novels were based on the television series ``The Man from U.N.C.L.E.'' and ``Hawaii Five-0,'' died Friday at the age of 74.
Avallone wrote more than 200 books and short stories during his 45 year career, including Westerns, horror stories and children's books. He was best known as the author of the Ed Noon series of detective novels published between 1953 and 1988.
The author, whose works were translated and published around the world, once said he began to write ``when he discovered pencils'' and said: ``I never wrote a book I didn't like.''
His first novel, ``The Tall Dolores,'' was published in 1953 and featured his detective character Ed Noon. He went on to pen 36 Ed Noon novels.
He also wrote gothic romances under the pen name Edwina Noone.
SAN DIEGO (AP) _ Jazz critic Stanley Dance, a 1963 Grammy winner and confidant of Duke Ellington and Earl Hines, died Tuesday of pneumonia. He was 88.
Dance was one of the genre's most respected critics and his work spanned 60 years. He won a Grammy Award in 1963 for writing the liner notes for the album ``The Ellington Era.''
He also wrote liner notes for the Sweet Baby Blues Band and was featured chanting on the track ``Sometimes it be That Way'' on singer-pianist Jeannie Cheatham's 1987 album ``Homeward Bound.''
Born in England, Dance began writing about jazz professionally in 1935, eventually marrying Helen Oakley, who was in charge of Variety Records and produced several of Ellington's small group records in the 1930s.
His work appeared in the New York Herald Tribune, Saturday Review, Down Beat and Jazz Times.
NEW YORK (AP) _ Winthrop Edey, internationally known for his love and knowledge of clocks and the keeper of a meticulous diary documenting life in New York, died Feb. 22 from Hodgkin's disease. He was 61.
Edey gained international recognition as an expert on antique clocks and started buying them before they were considered collector's items. He helped the Frick Collection bring together an exhibit of French clocks in 1982. Nine of the best clocks were from his own collection.
Edey also was known for his detailed diary writing, which he started at age 6. Some have guessed that his multivolume and still unpublished diary could become an important reflection of New York life.
Edey mingled in different art circles and befriended Andy Warhol and Robert Mapplethorpe and Andy Warhol, in whose 1963 movie, ``The 13 Most Beautiful Boys,'' he was included.
LAKEWOOD, Colo. (AP) _ Robert Heron, a leader in designing tramways and ski lifts, including Aspen Mountain's Lift No. 1, died Friday. He was 84.
Heron, trained as a civil engineer, began his career building aerial tramways to haul material to the mines of the Kennicott Copper Co.
While working for the Denver-based Stearns Roger Manufacturing Co., Heron came up with trams that the Army's 10th Mountain Division used to shuttle ammunition, food, water and casualties during the battle of Riva Ridge in World War II.
But Heron is best known for his peacetime work.
In the mid-1940s, Heron and his older brother formed Heron Engineering. Among their first projects was Lift No. 1 on Aspen Mountain. The brothers also built one of the world's first double chairs, at Berthoud Pass, in 1946.
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) _ Ken Robinson, a baseball player who was trying to make it back to the big leagues through the Arizona Diamondbacks minor league camp, was killed early Sunday when a car driven by a fellow minor leaguer careened off a Tucson road and overturned resulting in severe head injuries. Robinson was 29.
The driver, pitcher John Rosengren, who was not seriously injured, was charged with second-degree murder in what police say was an alcohol-related crash.
Robinson had been a part of the Diamondbacks' 40-man roster in spring training a year ago, but missed the season because of shoulder surgery. He and Rosengren, who also missed all of last season after arm surgery, were awaiting the opening of the Diamondbacks' minor league training camp.
Robinson, who was was Toronto's 10th-round pick in 1991, had brief big league stints as a relief pitcher with the club in 1995 and 1997, and with Kansas City in 1996. He spent most 1997 with Triple-A Syracuse, where he was 7-7 with a 3.56 ERA.
ATLANTA (AP) _ Harry Rossoll, who as a U .S. Forest Service illustrator created the Smokey Bear fire prevention messages that became one of the most successful public relations campaigns, died Thursday of an intestinal aneurysm. He was 89.
Rossoll provided the rough draft for Smokey Bear in 1944 as the character to promote forest fire prevention after rejecting figures including a forest ranger and a beaver.
Rossoll drew more than 1,000 ``Smokey Says'' cartoons that were published in newspapers across the nation for 25 years. He also talked with foresters in the field and gave talks about Smokey and fire prevention to school children.
Richard R. Shinn
GREENWICH, Conn. (AP) _ Richard R. Shinn, who joined MetLife as a $15-a-week mailroom employee in 1939 and rose to become chairman and chief executive officer, died Friday at age 81.
Shinn, who was 18 when he went to work for MetLife, was elected MetLife's president and a member of the board in 1969. He was appointed chief executive officer in 1973 and became chairman of the board and CEO in 1980. He retired in 1988.
Under his leadership, MetLife became the industry's foremost provider of group insurance and entered the property and casualty insurance and reinsurance business.
He was executive vice president of the New York Stock Exchange from 1986 to 1988. He also was a director of St. Vincent's Hospital and Medical Center of New York, Vanderbilt University, Barnard College ad the Inner City Scholarship Fund.
He was on the blue ribbon panel that averted New York City's financial crisis in the mid-1970s during which MetLife floated $80 million in ``Big Mac'' bonds that helped alleviate the city's financial crunch.
Michael St. Clair
NEW YORK (AP) _ Michael St. Clair, an art dealer who helped bring public attention to the work of once-overlooked painters including Alfred Maurer, Childe Hassam and Marsden Hartley, died Monday. He was 86.
St. Clair, who was director of the Babcock Galleries for 40 years, used his influence in the New York art world to promote many unsung artists.
In 1959, he took possession of Hartley's estate from dealer Paul Rosenberg, who had been unable to generate interest in the painter's work.
Over the next two decades, St. Clair organized 11 Hartley exhibitions and eventually sold the artists' paintings to nearly 70 museums. The Whitney Museum of American Art put on a Hartley retrospective in 1978.
He served in the 328th Fighter Squadron in North Africa and Europe during World War II, and earned a silver star and three bronze stars for bravery.
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) _ Harriet Waddy, one of the first black officers commissioned in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps during World War II and one of the highest ranking black women in its successor, the Women's Army Corps, died Feb. 21. She was 94.
Ms. Waddy joined the WAAC early in World War II, underwent basic training in Iowa and then returned to Washington in 1942 to work as an aide to the director of the corps.
The corps was made part of the regular Army and renamed the Women's Army Corps later in 1942. Ms. Waddy graduated from Adjutant General's School and was put in charge of 50 civilian typists in the Casualty Branch. Their job was to write letters notifying families that soldiers had been killed, wounded or were missing in action.
In a newspaper interview from 1942, Waddy said succeeding as a WAC would drive a wedge into prejudicial beliefs. She noted that her uniform entitled her to go anywhere in Washington.
She served on active duty in the Army until 1952 and was in the reserves until 1969. She worked for the Federal Aviation Administration for 25 years, retiring in Los Angeles in 1969.