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in memoriam

Remembering those we lost around the world in 2018

From Burt Reynolds to Aretha Franklin, we take a look back at some of the many greats that the world lost this year.

THIS YEAR, WE lost many luminaries of the stage and screen around the world.

Here, we remember the people who shaped our lives and bid their final farewells in the last 12 months.


On 3 January, Thomas Monson the 16th president of the Mormon church, passed away aged 90. 

On 7 January, founding member of the British rock group, The Moody Blues, Ray Thomas died aged 76   

The rocker died just a few months before the band was due to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Redbaron863 / YouTube

On 17 January, Home and Away Actress Falkholt passed away, three weeks after being seriously injured in a car crash.

Falkholt was perhaps best known for her role as Hope Morrison in the popular Australian soap, which she left in 2016.

jessica-11-310x415 Twitter / HomeAndAway Twitter / HomeAndAway / HomeAndAway

South African jazz legend Hugh Masekela died age 78 on 23 January. 

Masekela fled apartheid South Africa in the early 1960s and did not return for three decades until after the release of Nelson Mandela in 1990. Among his greatest hits was the anthem Bring Him Back Home, demanding Mandela’s freedom from jail.

Chingon Domino / YouTube

Lead singer of the post-punk band, the Fall, Mark E Smith died aged 60 on 24 January.    

The 60-year-old was the only member of the band who’d been there since its formation in 1976, and Smith was well-known for falling out with bandmates with The Fall having had over 60 members over 40 years.

On 28 January, Ingvar Kamprad, the founder of Swedish furniture giant Ikea died age 91. 

Mark Sailing one the stars of the TV show Glee, died at the age of 35 on 30 January. 

His death came weeks before he was scheduled to be sentenced in federal court over child pornography charges.

Mark Salling Death Byron Purvis / Admedia via PA Images Byron Purvis / Admedia via PA Images / Admedia via PA Images


Actor John Mahoney, most famous for his role playing Martin Crane in US sitcom Fraiser, passed away aged 77 on 5 February. 

John Mahoney who played father in 'Frasier' dead at 77 SIPA USA / PA Images SIPA USA / PA Images / PA Images

On 10 February, actor Ref E Cathey passed away at the age of 59. 

A nine-time Emmy nominee, Cathey won the coveted award in 2015 for a role in the Netflix series House of Cards as Freddy Hayes, owner of a barbecue restaurant that Kevin Spacey’s character Frank Underwood frequents. 

One of the most famous preachers of the 20th Century, Reverend Bill Graham passed away aged 99 on 21 February. 

Graham transformed American religious life through his preaching and activism, becoming a counsellor to presidents and the most widely heard Christian evangelist in history.

The story behind Billy Graham's casket and the prison inmates who made it Billy Graham pictured in 1996. SIPA USA / PA Images SIPA USA / PA Images / PA Images

On 24 February, British actress Emma Chambers passed away at the age of 53. 

She is best known for her role playing Alice Tinker in BBC’s The Vicar of Dibley and also had roles in Notting Hill and Martin Chuzzlewit.

HOW DO YOU WANT ME PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images


David Ogden Stiers, a prolific actor best known for playing a surgeon on the hit TV 70s sitcom MASH, died at the age of 75 on 4 March 

On 12 March, the legendary Liverpudlian comedian famous for his ‘tickle stick, Ken Dodd passed away age 90.

Comedy - Ken Dodd PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

Hubert De Givenchy, the aristocratic French fashion designer, passed away age 91 on 12 March. 

Givenchy set the template for ladylike chic in the 1950s and 1960s, and his restrained style still informs the way Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II and older American and Chinese socialites dress.

ABACA 38066-8 Givenchy ABACA / PA Images ABACA / PA Images / PA Images

On 14 March, Stephen Hawking passed away at the age of 76. 

The best-known theoretical physicist of his time, Hawking wrote so lucidly of the mysteries of space, time and black holes that his book, A Brief History of Time, became an international bestseller, making him one of science’s biggest celebrities since Albert Einstein.

Bill Maynard, known for his role as Greengrass in Heartbeat and Sergeant Beetroot in Worzel Gummidge, passed away aged 89 on 30 March. 

ACTOR BILL MAYNARD PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images


On 2 April, Winne Madikizela-Mandela died age 81. The anti-apartheid campaigner and former wife of Nelson Mandela died in a Johannesburg Hospital after a long illness. 

Nelson Mandela is Released Graeme Williams via PA images Graeme Williams via PA images

Oscar-winning film director Milos Forman, known for One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Amadeus, passed away 14 April at the age of 86. 

Born in the town of Caslav east of Prague on 18 February 1932, Forman lost both parents in Nazi concentration camps.

Milos Forman 1932-2018 Czech-American Director Imago / PA Images Imago / PA Images / PA Images

On 16 April, US actor R Lee Ermey passed away at the age of 74. 

Ermey is best known for his role as foul-mouthed Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket as the gung-ho plastic soldier Sarge in Toy Story. 

The Dude Abides / YouTube

Former US first lady and wife of President George HW Bush, Barbara Bush passed away on 18 April at the age of 92


On 19 April, well-known British TV presenter Dale Winton died aged 62. 

Winton had hosted the popular daytime show Supermarket Sweep for nearly a decade and had appeared on lottery show In It To Win It and game show Hole In The Wall.

Dale Winton return to screens PA Wire / PA Images PA Wire / PA Images / PA Images

On 20 April, Swedish DJ Avicii died at the age of 28. 

He had retired from performing live in 2016, citing health reasons. He suffered from a range of health issues for several years including acute pancreatitis.

DJ Avicii 1989:2018 Swedish DJ Musician SMG SMG


Margot Kidder, who starred as Lois Lane in the Superman film franchise of the late 1970s and early 1980s, died aged 69 on 14 May. 

Both Kidder and co-star Christopher Reeve, who played Superman, were relative unknowns when they got their leading parts.

Margot Kidder 1948-2018 American Actress The Canadian Press via PA Images The Canadian Press via PA Images

Author Tom Wolfe, who chronicled everything from hippies to the space race before turning his sharp eye to fiction, passed away at the age of 88 on 15 May. 

Among his acclaimed books were The Right Stuff and The Bonfire of the Vanities, a satire of Manhattan-style power and justice that became one of the best-selling books of the 1980s.


Grand man of American letters Philp Roth, who achieved fame with the sexually explicit ‘Portnoy’s Complaint’ in 1969, passed away aged 85 on 23 May. 

Roth won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for fiction for his acclaimed novel American Pastoral.

Author Philip Roth dies aged 85 - File Photos Van Tine Dennis / ABACA Van Tine Dennis / ABACA / ABACA


On 5 June, fashion designer Kate Spade died at the age of 55. 

Spade created a line of sleek handbags in the early 1990s that was incredibly successful. Her company, Kate Spade New York, has over 140 retail shops and outlet stores across the US and more than 175 shops internationally.

Designer Kate Spade Found Dead in New York City Globe Photos via PA Images Globe Photos via PA Images

Peter Stringfellow, the renowned English nightclub owner, died at the age of 77 on 7 June. 

In a career spanning more than 50 years, he opened late night venues across the world, in locations like Miami and Paris, not to mention an ill-fated foray into the Irish market with a club in Dublin at the height of the Celtic Tiger.

Stringfellow may contest Clegg PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

On 8 June, TV presenter and chef Anthony Bourdain died aged 61. 

Sometimes called “the original rock star” of the culinary world, his fascination with food in all its forms and desire to sample cuisines around the world made him a hit with food-lovers worldwide.

Anthony Bourdain PA Wire / PA Images PA Wire / PA Images / PA Images

On 15 June, former Eastenders actor Leslie Grantham passed away aged 71. 

Grantham was best known for his role as ‘Dirty Den’ on the BBC One soap.

On 27 June, the patriarch of the Jacksons family, Joe Jackson passed away at the age of 89.  

In the mid-1960s, Jackson and his wife Katherine were responsible for encouraging his sons to enter the music business as the group the Jackson 5. They went on to have a huge career, and Michael Jackson became incredibly successful with his own solo career.

Joe Jackson dies. He was 89 Javier Rojas / Pi via PA Images Javier Rojas / Pi via PA Images / Pi via PA Images


Musician Richard Swift, who was in bands such as The Shins, The Arcs and The Black Keys, passed away on 3 July aged 41. 

Richard Swift 1977-2018 American Musician Igor Vidyashev Igor Vidyashev

On 9 July, actor Tab Hunter passed away at the age of 86. 

The blond actor and singer was a heartthrob for millions of teenagers in the 1950s with such films as Battle Cry and Damn Yankees. 

Tab Hunter 1931-2018 American Actor Hunter pictured in 1958. JT Vintage via PA Images JT Vintage via PA Images

On 14 July, Nancy Sinatra Senior passed away at the age of 101. 

Nancy was the childhood sweetheart of Frank Sinatra who became the first of his four wives and the mother of his three children. 

sinatra-310x415 Nancy and Frank Sinatra pictured in 1946. AP / file AP / file / file


Veteran TV and theatre entertainer Barry Chuckle passed away aged 73 on 5 August. 

The entertainer, whose real name is Barry Elliott, was best known as being one-half of the double-act the Chuckle Brothers. 

Barry Chuckle death Barry (left) and Paul Elliott of comedy duo the Chuckle Brothers Yui Mok vai PA Images Yui Mok vai PA Images

On 13 August, wrestling legend Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart passed away aged 63.

Neidhart, the father of current WWE superstar Natalya, was best known as one half of the 80s and 90s tag team The Hart Foundation. Alongside his brother-in-law Bret Hart, he would hold the tag team championship twice.

pastedimage-86356-2-390x285 WWE WWE

On 16 August, Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin passed away after a long illness at the age of 76. 

Franklin was born and rose to fame during the segregation era and went on to sing at the inauguration of the first black president, often used her talent, fortune and platform to inspire millions of black Americans and support the fight for racial equality.

49metal / YouTube

On 18 August, former Secretary General of the United Nations Kofi Annan passed away at the age of 80.

Annan, who led the UN from 1997 to 2006, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001. He was the first black African secretary of the organisation.

Kofi Annan - Press Conference - London PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

On 22 August, actor Stefan Karl Stefansson who is best known for playing Robbie Rotten in Lazy Town, died aged 43. 

The Icelandic actor played the resident villain in the popular children’s tv show.


BBC radio presenter Rachael Bland passed away on 5 September aged 40.

She took to Twitter two days before she died to announced she had days to live. She had incurable cancer.

rach-4-310x415 Twitter Twitter

On 6 September, actor Burt Reynolds passed away aged 82. 

Reynolds was a huge box office attraction, particularly in the 1970s. He is best known for his appearance in movies like Deliverance, Smokey and the Bandit, Boogie Nights and the Longest Yard.

Entertainment: Burt Reynolds SIPA USA / PA Images SIPA USA / PA Images / PA Images

On 7 September, rapper Mac Miller died aged 26. 

Miller was known for his critically-acclaimed albums The Divine Feminine and Swimming. Throughout his career, he was open about his addiction struggles. 

Mac Miller / YouTube

On 22 September, musician Chas Hodges died aged 74. 

The British star, one half of the musical duo Chas and Dave, had been receiving treatment for oesophageal cancer.


Co-founder of the 1960s California psychedelic rock group Jefferson Airplane, Marty Balin, passed away aged 76 on 29 September. 

Jefferson Airplane released its first album in 1966, but achieved its breakthrough a year later with Surrealistic Pillow, which went gold.

Grammys Radio Row Day 1 - Los Angeles ABACA / PA Images ABACA / PA Images / PA Images


On 1 October, French-Armenian musician Charles Aznavour passed away aged 94. 

Sometimes described as France’s Frank Sinatra, his career spanned over 80 years. His most famous songs include She and Dance in the Old Fashioned Way.

Charles Aznavour performs live on stage Moreau Lionel / ABACA via PA images Moreau Lionel / ABACA via PA images / ABACA via PA images

Geoffrey Hayes, the former presenter of beloved 80s children’s staple Rainbow, died aged 76 on 1 October. 

Hayes was the chief presenter of more than 1,000 episodes of Rainbow between 1974 and 1992, a kind of variety ITV show starring the iconic puppets Zippy and George, and Bungle, a sort of man-bear be-costumed humanoid, with ‘Geoffrey’ the put-upon custodian of the three.

Rainbow auction Geoffrey Hayes former presenter of the Children's TV Programme Rainbow with Zippy (centre), George and Bungle (left) PA Archive / PA Images PA Archive / PA Images / PA Images

Spanish opera star, Montserrat Caballe died aged 85 on 6 October. 

In her almost unlimited repertoire, she starred in 90 opera roles with nearly 4,000 stage performances.

LadyArmide / YouTube

On 15 October, billionaire Paul Allen died at the age of 65 after a battle with cancer. Allen founded US software giant Microsoft with Bill Gates in the 1970s. 


On 12 November, former comic book writer and editor Stan Lee, passed away aged 95. 

The former publisher and chairman of Marvel Comics helped to create superheroes such as Spider-Man, the Hulk, the X-Men and Iron Man. 

Stan Lee Death Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez / Pi Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez / Pi / Pi

On 16 November, Oscar-winning screenwriter William Goldman died aged 87. 

Goldman will be best remembered for the Paul Newman and Robert Redford-starring genre-upending western Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and the Watergate drama All The President’s Men. His comic-fantasy novel The Princess Bride, which remains his most popular book, was also adapted into a movie in 1987.

Oscars / YouTube

On 27 November, SpongeBob SquarePants creator Stephen Hillenburg died aged 57. 

Hillenburg passed away of Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as ALS. 

Entertainment: Stephen Hillenburg SIPA USA / PA Images SIPA USA / PA Images / PA Images

On 28 November, RAF veteran and Twitter phenomenon Harry Leslie Smith died aged 95. 

The nonagenarian was often found tweeting about British politics and the refugee crisis on his account Harry’s Last Stand, or on his Facebook page of the same name.

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On 1 December, former US President George HW Bush died at age 94.

Tributes quickly poured in for the former US leader, a decorated war pilot and onetime CIA chief who also saw his son George follow in his footsteps to the Oval Office.

George H.W. Bush Press Conference Bush on 4 June 1992 during a press conference in the East Room of the White House. DPA / PA Images DPA / PA Images / PA Images

On 17 December, Penny Marshall, one of the most successful female directors in history, died at the age of 75.

The filmmaker, who directed Big, A League of Their Own and a string of other hit movies, died peacefully at her home due to complications from diabetes. 

She made her name as Laverne DeFazio on the TV sitcom Laverne and Shirley from 1976 to 1983, earning three Golden Globe nominations, before making her directorial debut with Jumpin’ Jack Flash in 1986.

Penny Marshall 1943-2018 American Actress Director Penny Marshall (R) and Cindy Williams as Laverne & Shirley. Globe Photos via PA Images Globe Photos via PA Images

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

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