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Obituaries in the News

June 20, 2002

Morris Berman

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PHOENIX (AP) _ Morris Berman, whose photograph of bloodied New York Giants quarterback Y.A. Tittle kneeling in the end zone ranks among the most famous images in sports history, died Sunday. He was 92.

While working for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in 1964, Berman captured the shot after the quarterback was sacked by Pittsburgh Steeler John Baker. The photo was taken in the last game of Tittle’s career.

``His photo editor wouldn’t run the picture in the newspaper because it didn’t have any action in it,″ said Greg Garneau, executive director of the National Press Photographers Association.

The photograph was subsequently published and became a sports icon.

It won the National Headliner award for best sport photograph in 1964 and now hangs in the National Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

Berman also served as an Army photographer in World War II. His best known work in the Army were images of the corpses of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress.

A native of Wheeling, W.Va., he worked for the Wheeling News and Pittsburgh Sun Telegraph before joining the Post-Gazette. He was a founder of the National Press Photographers Association.

He is survived by his wife, sister-in-law, five nephews and a niece.

Susan Seawell Brandau

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Susan Seawell Brandau, a former editor and writer for The Tennessean newspaper, died Sunday of complications from pneumonia. She was 90.

A graduate of Ward-Belmont College, she also attended Oldsfield School and studied piano at the Nashville Conservatory of Music. She worked for the Junior League and the Nashville Symphony before joining the newspaper.

Brandau became editor of the society section and later left for a variety of jobs including copy writer at Abingdon Press, a United Methodist Church publishing house in Nashville. She returned to The Tennessean in 1969 and worked in the features department until retiring in 1984.

She is survived by a nephew.

Mary A. Dieli

SEATTLE (AP) _ Mary A. Dieli, who designed some of the first software to make computers easier to use, died Friday after an 18-month battle with breast cancer. She was 46.

Born into a large Sicilian family in Brooklyn, N.Y., she earned a doctorate in rhetoric from Carnegie Mellon University before going to work at Apple Computer, where she helped design the Lisa operating system in the early 1980s.

Lisa was one of the first commercially available systems to move away from commands that had to be typed and often were difficult to remember, as in the old Microsoft MS-DOS system.

Dieli moved to Seattle in 1988 to establish two computer usability laboratories for the study of human-computer interaction at Microsoft Corp., and her work was used in designing the Windows 3.1 and Windows 95 user interfaces.

Most recently, she started a consulting business and worked with Cisco Systems, Netscape, Hewlett-Packard and Dow Jones Inc.

Roman Norbert Ketterer

LUGANO, Switzerland (AP) _ Roman Norbert Ketterer, a leading German modern art dealer who worked to restore the reputation of artists vilified by the Nazis, died Wednesday. He was 91.

A family announcement gave no cause of death.

Ketterer devoted much of his life to promoting expressionist paintings. Determined to win the rehabilitation of expressionist painters who were denounced by Nazi Germany, Ketterer started up specialized art auctions in 1947 in the German city of Stuttgart.

The auctions continued until 1962, luring wealthy collectors like Dutch industrial baron Heinrich von Thyssen-Bornemisza and Greek shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos.

In 1954, Ketterer became administrator of the estate of Ernst Ludwig Kirchner _ co-founder of the pre-World War I ``Die Bruecke″ group of German expressionists. Kirchner committed suicide in his Swiss exile in 1938 after he was banned by the Nazis as a ``degenerate artist.″ He left behind a wealth of paintings _ now exhibited in museums around the world including New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

Ketterer helped set up the Ludwig Kirchner Museum in Davos by donating 500 paintings and 160 sketchbooks to the Alpine resort, where the artist spent his last years.

James Luisi

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ James Luisi, a former professional basketball player who turned to acting and won an Emmy Award for his portrayal as George Washington in a television special, died of cancer June 7. He was 73.

Luisi played two seasons with the Baltimore Bullets in the Basketball Association of America. After a short-lived basketball career, he studied acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.

He began his acting career on the stage, appearing in Broadway’s ``The Soldiers,″ ``Sweet Charity,″ and ``Zorba.″

After making the switch to television, where he appeared regularly in the soap operas ``Another World″ and ``Days of Our Lives,″ he made cameo roles in numerous shows such as ``Magnum P.I.,″ ``Kojak″ and ``Hart to Hart.″ He was best known for his long-running role as Lt. Doug Chapman on television’s ``The Rockford Files.″

Luisi won an Emmy in 1976, playing George Washington in the NBC special, ``First Ladies’ Diaries: Martha Washington.″

Luisi also was given his own television show in 1983 called ``Renegades,″ which lasted one season.

Born in New York, Luisi attended St. Francis College on a basketball scholarship. He served in the Army during the Korean War.

Leslie Midgley

NEW YORK (AP) _ Veteran television news producer Leslie Midgley died of pneumonia Wednesday at his home in Hartsdale, N.Y. He was 87.

Midgley covered the assassination of president John F. Kennedy for CBS News, producing four nights of instant specials on the president and the shooting, pioneering that type of programming.

Along with Walter Cronkite, Midgley exhaustively reported on the Warren Commission’s report on the assassination, finding no conspiracy.

Midgley won many Emmy, Peabody and other broadcasting awards, and for a decade covered the Vietnam War, including the fall of Saigon in 1975.

Born in Salt Lake City, Midgley dropped out of college to become a newspaper reporter, moving from city to city in America, finally winding up at the now-defunct New York Herald Tribune.

He joined CBS in 1954 to write a morning program called F.Y.I. In his 1989 memoir, Midgley worried that network news was ``not getting any better in editorial quality, despite dazzling technical advantages.″

Audrey Skirball-Kenis

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Audrey Skirball-Kenis, who poured millions of dollars into philanthropic projects and helped develop plans for a cultural center that bears her name, died Wednesday. She was 87.

She died of natural causes, a family spokeswoman said.

Born in Alabama as Audrey Marks, she moved to Southern California in the 1940s. After two brief marriages, she wed Jack Skirball, a rabbi turned independent movie producer who made a fortune in real estate. The union lasted 38 years until his death, at age 89, in 1985.

The couple built the Skirball Cultural Center, a museum that focuses on the Jewish heritage and American democratic ideals. It opened in 1996 and has had more than 3 million visitors.

Skirball-Kenis was involved in many charities, including the Los Angeles Music Center, the Oxford Centre for Postgraduate Hebrew Studies in England, and the New York Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine.

In 1987, she married Charles Kenis, an importer of French cognac and wines. The pair operated a stable with more than two dozen horses.

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