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Obituaries in the News

July 3, 2001

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MOSCOW (AP) _ Nobel Prize-winning physicist Nikolai Basov, whose work was fundamental to the development of lasers, died at 78, Russian news reports said Monday.

Basov, fellow Soviet physicist Alexander Prokhorov and Charles Townes of the United States shared the Nobel physics prize in 1964 for work in quantum electronics.

Townes is credited with developing the first maser _ a beam of tightly focused microwave radiation similar to a laser _ in 1953 while Basov and Prokhorov produced a similar device the next year.

Both developments led to the laser, which is now an integral laboratory tool and a central component in compact disc players and other appliances. The word laser is an acronym of ``light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation,″ and the devices produce intense beams of light of a single frequency.

Bob Cifers

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Bob Cifers, who played in the NFL in the 1940s, died Sunday. He was 80.

A member of the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame, Cifers played running back and punter and ran track at the University of Tennessee.

The Detroit Lions drafted Cifers in the second round in 1944. He led Detroit with four touchdowns in 1946 and averaged 45.6 yards on 30 punts that season.

Cifers played with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1947-48 and with the Green Bay Packers in 1949.

Hal Goldman

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Hal Goldman, an Emmy-winning writer who provided the punch lines for Jack Benny and George Burns, died Wednesday of cancer. He was 81.

The joke writer got his start in Hollywood after World War II, writing radio scripts for actor Eddie Cantor.

He began working with Al Gordon and the two heard Benny needed material for Rochester, the black valet, on his radio show. They quickly wrote some lines and Benny was impressed enough to bring Goldman and Gordon aboard.

Joined by two other writers, the team followed Benny over to television and remained with him until the show was canceled in 1965. Goldman continued writing for Benny’s TV specials until the star died in 1974.

While on Benny’s show, Goldman won two Emmys in 1958 and 1959 in the Best Comedy Series category. He also won a third in 1966 for his material on a Carol Channing special. Goldman earned a Writers Guild Award in 1986 for ``George Burns’ 90th Birthday Salute.″

Kenneth Schuyler Lynn

NEW YORK (AP) _ Kenneth Schuyler Lynn, an author, editor and educator known for his writings on American thought and his analytical studies of Mark Twain, Charlie Chaplin and Ernest Hemingway, died June 24 of complications from leukemia. He was 78.

Lynn, who lived in Washington, was the former Lovejoy professor of history at Johns Hopkins University, where he taught from 1969 until he was given emeritus status in 1989. He was previously a professor of English and chairman of an American civilization program at Harvard University.

His ``Hemingway,″ published in 1987, paid special attention to the fact that when Hemingway was a young boy he was dressed in girls’ clothing, leading, in Lynn’s opinion, to possible sexual confusion in later life.

Charles Arthur McAleer

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Charles Arthur McAleer, a crime reporter who became editor at the defunct Washington Star during a 44-year career at the paper, died Monday of diabetes. He was 82.

McAleer served in the military for three decades, starting as a National Guardsman before being called to active duty in the Army in 1941.

Later, he took a job as a copyboy at the Washington Star and worked his way up to crime reporter.

In 1977, he covered the armed takeover of the Islamic Center in Washington, winning a Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild first place award for news coverage.

His wife, Eleanor McAleer, died in 1993.

Beethavean Scottland

NEW YORK (AP) _ Boxer Beethavean Scottland died Monday night, nearly a week after he was knocked unconscious in the final round of a bout on the aircraft carrier Intrepid. He was 26.

Scottland, of North Brentwood, Md., was knocked out by light-heavyweight George Khalid Jones of Paterson, N.J., in the 10th round of the fight aboard the Intrepid Sea Air Space Museum last week. He lost consciousness within minutes of his knockout.

He underwent two operations to relieve pressure on his brain, including three hours of neurosurgery on Wednesday.

Scottland, normally a super-middleweight, was a late replacement when another boxer, David Telesco, withdrew from the match after his nose was broken during training.

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