Ben Kerr was 75. He was the ageless crooner who spiced up the corner of Yonge and Bloor Sts. with his smooth country singing.
I lived at Yonge and Bloor for a couple of years and Ben was always there. On the one hand, he seemed pleasant and charming, happily singing for change at the corner and running for mayor whenever possible. On the other hand, I would sometimes see him digging through garbage cans inside the station. Reading of his death, all I could envision was that sight of an older man rummaging through garbage at Yonge/Bloor station. It was so sad.
Bill LaForge was 53. He was a former coach of the NHL's Vancouver Canucks and several teams in the Canadian Hockey League.
Lane Smith was 69. He was a longtime character actor who played a small-town district attorney who clashed with Joe Pesci in "My Cousin Vinny".
Scott Young was 87. He was a prolific Canadian journalist and author as well as a father to the Godfather of Grunge.
Dana Elcar was 77. He was the round-faced, balding actor whose real-life struggle with blindness was written into his role on the TV adventure series "MacGyver".
Ann Bancroft was 73. She won the 1962 best actress Oscar as the teacher of a young Helen Keller in "The Miracle Worker" but achieved greater fame as the seductive Mrs. Robinson in "The Graduate".
George Mikan was 80. He was the "gentle giant" who a half-century ago brought fame and stability to the fledgling world of professional basketball and literally transformed the game.
Oscar Brown Jr. was 78. He was a legendary rhythm & blues and jazz singer known for such compositions "The Snake," "Signifyin' Monkey" and lyrics for Miles Davis' "All Blues."
John D'Amico was 67. He was a Hall of Fame hockey linesman who officiated close to 2,000 career NHL games.
Eddie Albert was 99. He was an actor best known as the constantly befuddled city slicker-turned-farmer in television's "Green Acres".
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