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Obituaries in the News

March 22, 2000

DALLAS (AP) _ Spencer Hayward Blain, who presided over one of the nation’s first and most notorious savings and loan failures of the 1980s, died Sunday from complications of cancer. He was 63.

He had served nearly five years of a 20-year sentence for racketeering and bank fraud for his part in the 1984 failure of Empire Savings and Loan of Mesquite.

Blain was named president of First Federal Savings and Loan of Austin, considered one of the most conservative lending institutions in the state.

While there, Blain became president of the Texas Savings and Loan League and vice chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board of Little Rock, which supervised thrift lending in Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and New Mexico.

In March 1982, Blain assumed control of Empire Savings. By the time it was closed by federal regulators in March 1984, Empire Savings had become one of the fastest-growing commercial lenders in the country.

Empire Savings was the first of hundreds of S&L’s to be closed by the federal government for fraud. It alone represented an estimated loss of $327 million.

Margaret Pritchard Boone

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Margaret Pritchard Boone, the mother of entertainer Pat Boone, died Monday. She was 90.

Mrs. Boone was a registered nurse who helped run the family contracting business for many years.

Giovanni Linscheer

BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) _ Giovanni Linscheer, a two-time Olympic swimmer for Suriname, died Sunday when his sport utility vehicle crashed head-on into a van as he drove the wrong way on an interstate. He was 27.

Linscheer, a civil engineer who lived in Delray Beach and Jacksonville, competed in the 110-meter butterfly and 100-meter freestyle for his native country in the 1992 and 1996 Olympics.

He was a bronze medalist at the 1994 Pan American Games and was twice named an All-American while swimming at Florida.

Joseph Melville See Jr.

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) _ The former husband of Linda McCartney, Joseph Melville See Jr., thought to have inspired the character Jo-Jo in a 1969 Beatles song, died Sunday of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was 62.

Melville filmed the indigenous people of Mexico as an anthropologist, but was best known for his marriage to the woman who would eventually marry legendary Beatle Paul McCartney.

See was the father of Heather McCartney, Linda’s eldest daughter. Paul McCartney adopted Heather when he married Linda in 1969.

For years, See was the subject of persistent rumors that he was the real-life Jo-Jo in the Beatles’ hit song ``Get Back,″ which says ``Jo-Jo left his home in Tucson, Arizona, for some California grass.″

Linda McCartney died in 1998 at the McCartney ranch in Tucson from breast cancer.

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