Who is Melissa Joan Catherine Hart? The entertainment and acting world knows her as Melissa Joan Hart. Hart is an American actress, writer, television director, television producer, singer and businesswoman. Hart is perhaps best known for her title roles in the television series Clarissa Explains It All (1991–1994) and the live action version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch (1996–2003).
Hart’s career has mixed movie work with television including appearances in the popular TV shows Law and Order and That ’70s Show. Since 2010, Hart has starred in the ABC Family series Melissa & Joey. Hart has been married to musician Mark Wilkerson since 2003 and together they have had two children.
Hart was born on April 18, 1976 in Smithtown, New York, on Long Island, the daughter of Paula, a producer and talent manager, and William Hart, a shellfish purveyor, clam hatchery worker, and entrepreneur. She grew up in Sayville, New York. Her stepfather (since 1994) is television executive Leslie Gilliams, and her stepmother is Lisa Hart. Hart was named after the Allman Brothers song “Melissa“, while her middle name, Joan, came from her maternal grandmother. She chose Catherine as her confirmation name when she was in the eighth grade.
Hart is the eldest of eight children with six sisters, and one brother. Sisters Trisha, Elizabeth and Emily Hart, brother Brian, and half-sisters Alexandra Hart-Gilliams and Samantha Hart have all acted. Her half-sister Mackenzie Hart is not in show business.
Hart’s career began at age four when she made a television commercial for a bathtub doll called Splashy. From then on, she appeared regularly in commercials, making 25 of them before the age of five. Other early television work included a small role in the miniseries Kane & Abel in 1985, a guest-starring role in an episode of The Equalizer in 1986, and a starring role alongside Katherine Helmond in the Emmy Award-winning TV movie Christmas Snow, also in 1986. She also auditioned for the lead role Jamie Lloyd in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers, losing the role to American actress Danielle Harris.
In 1989, she became the understudy for a Broadway production of The Crucible starring Martin Sheen.
Clarissa Explains It All (1991–1994)
In 1991 Hart landed the starring role on the Nickelodeon series Clarissa Explains It All, a comedy about a teen girl in everyday situations, which was successful during its four-year run. The show brought her four consecutive Young Artist Award nominations, winning three. Her role in the series also led to her starring in the FMV video game Nickelodeon’s Director’s Lab as a tour guide who takes the player around a movie studio. In 1992, she and Clarissa cast member Jason Zimbler appeared on the game show Nick Arcade as contestants, she is one the few people who played the beta version of Sonic The Hedgehog 2 on the Video Challenge.
Hart also recorded two albums as Clarissa, This is What Na Na Means and a recording of Peter and the Wolf.
Hart appeared on Nickelodeon’s anthology show Are You Afraid of the Dark? Season 2 episode “The Tale Of The Frozen Ghost” in 1991.
Sabrina The Teenage Witch (1995–2003)
After the television series ended, Hart attended New York University. However she did not complete her degree because she soon resumed her acting career when she was given the title role for the 1996 TV movie Sabrina the Teenage Witch. This was followed by the television series of the same name which lasted seven seasons on ABC and The WB. She later collaborated on an animated version that featured Hart voicing the two aunts Hilda and Zelda. Emily Hart starred in the title role. In between times, she also guest-starred on the series Touched by an Angel and starred in several TV movies.
In 1998, Hart landed a small part in the movie Can’t Hardly Wait, and then started filming Next to You, starring alongside Adrian Grenier. Hart asked her friend Britney Spears to do a remix of her song “(You Drive Me) Crazy” and add it to the movie’s soundtrack. To capitalize on the song’s success as a top-ten hit, the title of the movie was changed to Drive Me Crazy and Hart joined Spears in the music video for that song. Around the same time Spears was given a guest role in an episode of Sabrina the Teenage Witch where she played herself.
Hart appeared in lingerie in a series of photographs and an accompanying article in the October 1999 issue of the men’s magazine Maxim. Hart maintained her acting career in the 2000s including working on the the film Rent Control, which aired in 2005 on the ABC Family cable network. Hart continued her role on Sabrina the Teenage Witch, which finished in 2003, and also performed several voice-over roles for animation.
In 1999, Hart made her directorial debut in an episode of Disney Channel‘s So Weird called “Snapshot” which starred her sister, Emily Hart. She later directed an episode of Nickelodeon’s Taina in 2001. In 2001–2002, she directed 6 episodes of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, including the season 6 finale.
Post-Sabrina and comeback (2004–present)
After the end of Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Hart directed her first movie, a 15-minute live-action short film called Mute (2005), starring her sister Emily. Hart guest-starred on an episode of Law & Order: SVU that aired on October 9, 2007 titled “Impulsive” as a teacher accused of statutory rape. In late 2007, she directed the “Anger Cage” video for her husband Mark Wilkerson‘s band Course of Nature. She also starred in the ABC Family Original Movie Holiday in Handcuffs, opposite Mario Lopez. The movie premiered on December 9, 2007, and was the highest rated program in the history of the network, with 6.7 million viewers. Hart followed this with another ABC movie with a similar premise, My Fake Fiance, in 2009.
In March 2009, Hart opened a candy shop called SweetHarts in Sherman Oaks, California. Hart commented that it had been her “childhood dream” to own a candy shop.
It was announced on August 17, 2009 that she would compete in season 9 of Dancing with the Stars. Hart was paired up with two-time reigning champion, Mark Ballas but she was eliminated from the competition in week six out of a possible 10.
Hart starred as Kelley in a 2010 horror thriller film entitled Nine Dead, before returning to sitcoms, starring with Joey Lawrence in a new sitcom, Melissa & Joey. In the series Hart plays a woman who hires Lawrence as a nanny to help care for her incarcerated sister’s kids. Hart also joined the cast of an off-Broadway production of ‘Love, Loss, and What I Wore’ for a four week run that started in March 2010 and ended April 25, 2010.
In March 2010, Hart took part in an ad campaign for Gain detergent with former Sabrina, the Teenage Witch co-star Soleil Moon Frye.
On November 22, 2010, Hart participated as a presenter in the International Emmy Awards.
On July 19, 2003, Hart married musician Mark Wilkerson. The preparations for the ceremony, which took place in Florence, Italy, were documented in a TV miniseries titled Tying the Knot, produced by Hart’s production company, Hartbreak Films. Hart and Wilkerson have two sons: Mason Walter Wilkerson, who was born in January 2006 and Braydon “Brady” Hart Wilkerson, born in March 2008. Both boys were born in Los Angeles, California.
Hart and Wilkerson were featured in People magazine’s April 7, 2008 issue, introducing Braydon to the world. Hart wrote a diary, including video entries, to document potty training her son, Mason, for Pull-Ups brand diapers.
Hart has been described by The AV Club as a supporter of the Republican party, and has called herself a fan of Peggy Noonan and Ronald Reagan. She and her husband live in Westport, Connecticut.
|1986||Christmas Snow||Amy||TV movie|
|1995||Family Reunion: A Relative Nightmare||Samantha||TV movie|
|1996||Sabrina the Teenage Witch||Sabrina Spellman||Pilot movie for TV series|
|1996||Twisted Desire||Jennifer Stanton||TV movie|
|1997||The Right Connections||Melanie Cambridge||TV movie|
|1997||Two Came Back||Susan Clarkson||TV movie|
|1998||Silencing Mary||Mary Stuartson||TV movie|
|1998||Can’t Hardly Wait||Vicki, Yearbook Girl||Uncredited|
|1998||Sabrina Goes to Rome||Sabrina Spellman / Sophia||TV movie|
|1999||Drive Me Crazy||Nicole Maris|
|1999||Love, American Style||Annabelle||TV movie, segment “Love In The Old South”|
|1999||Sabrina, Down Under||Sabrina Spellman||TV movie|
|2000||Santa Mouse and the Ratdeer||Molly||Voice|
|2000||The Specials||Sunlight Grrrll|
|2000||Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker||Delia & Deidre Dennis / Dee Dee||Voice|
|2001||Recess: School’s Out||Becky Detweiller||Voice|
|2001||Not Another Teen Movie||Slow Clapper’s Instructor||Uncredited|
|2002||Rent Control||Holly Washburn||TV movie|
|2002||Hold On||Herself||Short film|
|2006||Jesus, Mary and Joey||Jackie|
|2007||Holiday in Handcuffs||Trudie Chandler||TV movie|
|2008||Whispers and Lies AKA Secrets of Pine Cove||Jill Roperson||TV movie|
|2009||Nine Dead||Kelly Murphy|
|2009||My Fake Fiance||Jennifer||TV movie|
|2010||Candyman: The Tribe||TBA||Direct-to-video|
|1985||ABC Weekend Specials||Cindy||Episode: “The Adventures of Con Sawyer and Hucklemary Finn”|
|1985||Kane & Abel||Florentyna Rosnovski (age 7)||Credited as “Melissa Hart”|
|1986||The Equalizer||Laura Moore||Episode: “Torn”; credited as “Melissa Hart”|
|1991–1994||Clarissa Explains It All||Clarissa Darling|
|1993||Are You Afraid of the Dark?||Daphne||Episode: “The Tale of the Frozen Ghost”|
|1995||Clarissa, Now||Clarissa Darling||Only one episode produced|
|1995||Touched by an Angel||Claire Latham||Episode: “Angels on the Air“|
|1996||Weinerville||Herself||Episode: “Weinerville Election Special”|
|1996–2003||Sabrina the Teenage Witch||Sabrina Spellman|
|1997||Boy Meets World||Sabrina Spellman||Episode: “The Witches of Pennbrook”|
|1997||You Wish||Sabrina Spellman||Episode: “Genie Without a Cause”|
|1997||Teen Angel||Sabrina Spellman||Episode: “One Dog Night”|
|1998||Promised Land||Sabrina Spellman||Episode: “Total Security”|
|1998||Superman: The Animated Series||Saturn Girl||Voice|
|1999||That ’70s Show||Mary||Episode: “Eric gets Suspended”|
|1999–2000||Sabrina: The Animated Series||Aunt Hilda Spellman / Aunt Zelda Spellman||Voice|
|2000||Just Shoot Me!||Krissy||Episode: “Fast Times at Finchmont High”|
|2005||Robot Chicken||Emily the Spy||Episode: “Operation Rich in Spirit”; Voice|
|2006||Justice League Unlimited||Delia & Deidre Dennis / Dee Dee||Voice|
|2007||Law & Order: Special Victims Unit||Sarah Trent||Episode: “Impulsive”|
|2009||Dancing With the Stars||Herself|
|2010–present||Melissa & Joey||Mel Burke|
|2010||When I Was 17||Herself|||
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Who is Catherine Elizabeth Middleton? The royal world of England knows her as Kate Middleton. Middleton is the fiancée of Prince William of Wales. Their wedding is to take place on 29 April 2011 at Westminster Abbey with the day declared a bank holiday in the UK. Middleton grew up in Chapel Row at Bucklebury, Berkshire, and after attending Marlborough College, studied at the University of St Andrews, where she met Prince William in 2001. They started a relationship, followed by media attention, triggering complaints by Middleton that the media were harassing her. In April 2007, the press reported that William and Middleton had split up.
They continued to be friends and later in 2007 they reunited. Since then, Middleton has attended many high-profile royal events. She has been admired for her fashion sense and has been placed on numerous “best dressed” lists. Since her relationship with Prince William began, Middleton has received widespread media attention and there was much speculation that they would eventually marry. On 16 November 2010, the office of the Prince of Wales at Clarence House announced their engagement. The date and location of the wedding were announced one week later.
Middleton was born 9 January 1982 to a Jewish mother at Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading.:32 She is the eldest of three children born to Carole Elizabeth (born 1955, née Goldsmith), an English stewardess, and Michael Francis Middleton (born 1949), who had worked as a steward before becoming a flight dispatcher for British Airways. Her parents married on 21 June 1980 at the Parish Church of Dorney, Buckinghamshire, and in 1987 founded Party Pieces, a mail order company that sells party supplies and decorations.
Middleton’s paternal family came from Leeds, West Yorkshire, and her great-grandmother Olivia was a member of the Lupton family, who were active for generations in Leeds in commercial and municipal work. Through Olivia Lupton, her ancestors include The Rev. Thomas Davis, a Church of England hymn-writer. Carole Middleton’s maternal family, the Harrisons, were working class labourers and miners from Sunderland and County Durham. Middleton has two siblings, Philippa Charlotte, known as “Pippa” (born 1983), and James William (born 1987). Pippa Middleton, a graduate of the University of Edinburgh, has received press coverage since her sister became famous, with focus on her relationships and lifestyle.
Middleton’s family were in Amman, Jordan, for British Airways from May 1984 to September 1986, where Middleton went to an English language nursery school, before returning to their home in Berkshire. After her return from Amman, Middleton was educated at St. Andrew’s School in the village of Pangbourne in Berkshire, then briefly at Downe House, before moving on to Marlborough College, a co-educational independent school in Wiltshire, followed by the University of St Andrews in Fife, where she met William and graduated with a 2:1 (Hons) in the History of Art.
In November 2006, Middleton accepted a position as an accessory buyer with the clothing chain Jigsaw. In September 2007, it was reported that Middleton was planning to give up her job as an accessory buyer to become a professional photographer. It was announced that she intended to take private classes with photographer Mario Testino, who had taken several well-known photographs of Diana, Princess of Wales and her sons. Middleton and Testino apparently were introduced by Prince William. Testino later denied that Middleton was going to be working for him.
Middleton has been featured in several best-dressed lists and was selected by The Daily Telegraph as the “Most Promising Newcomer” in its 2006 list of style winners and losers. Tatler placed her at number 8 on its yearly listing of the top ten style icons in 2007. She was featured in People magazine’s 2007 and 2010 best-dressed lists. Middleton was named as one of Richard Blackwell‘s ten “Fabulous Fashion Independents” of 2007. In June 2008, Style.com selected Middleton as its monthly beauty icon. In July 2008, Middleton was included in Vanity Fair‘s international best-dressed list. In February 2011, Middleton was named the Top Fashion Buzzword of the 2011 season by the Global Language Monitor.
Middleton’s unsubstantiated status as the girlfriend of William brought her widespread media coverage in the UK and abroad and she was often photographed on her daily outings. On 17 October 2005, she complained through her lawyer about harassment from the media, stating that she had done nothing significant to warrant such publicity. In February 2006, it was announced that Middleton would receive her own 24-hour security detail supplied by the Royalty and Diplomatic Protection Department. This fueled further speculation that she and William would soon be engaged, since she would not otherwise be entitled to this service.
No engagement occurred and Middleton was not granted an allowance to fund this security. Media attention increased around the time of Middleton’s 25th birthday in January 2007, prompting warnings from both Charles and William and from Middleton’s lawyers, who threatened legal action. Two newspaper groups, News International, which publishes The Times and The Sun, and the Guardian Media Group, publishers of The Guardian, decided to refrain from publishing paparazzi photographs of her. Middleton attended at least one event as an official royal guest, William’s Passing Out Parade at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on 15 December 2006. In December 2007, it was reported that Middleton had moved in with Prince William at Clarence House, the residence of the Prince of Wales in London. Clarence House later denied this.
On 17 May 2008, Middleton attended the wedding of William’s cousin Peter Phillips to Autumn Kelly, which the prince did not attend. On 19 July 2008, Middleton attended the wedding of Lady Rose Windsor and George Gilman. William was away on military operations in the Caribbean, serving aboard the HMS Iron Duke. On 28 February 2010, The Times reported that Middleton was pursuing an invasion of privacy suit against photographer Niraj Tanna who took pictures of her over Christmas 2009, although they were never published in Britain. Middleton has not pursued the claim against the photographer.
Breakup and reconciliation
On 14 April 2007, The Sun newspaper broke a “world exclusive” suggesting that Prince William and Middleton had split up. Other media outlets such as the BBC confirmed the story as the day progressed. The couple decided to break up during a holiday in the Swiss resort of Zermatt. Clarence House made only one comment about the relationship’s end, according to The Times, stating, “We don’t comment on Prince William’s private life.” Newspapers speculated about the reasons for the split, although these reports relied on anonymous sources.
The original report in The Sun quoted a “close friend of the couple” as saying that Middleton felt William had not been paying her enough attention. The paper highlighted reports that William had been spending time with other young women, and said the Prince, aged 24 at the time of the split, felt he was too young to marry. A report in the Daily Mail blamed a desire by royal courtiers not to “hurry along” a marriage announcement, and William’s desire to enjoy his bachelor status within his Army career. The Mail also suggested that William’s friend Guy Pelly encouraged the Prince to take a “careless approach” to relationships. The same article suggested that Middleton had “expected too much” in wanting William to demonstrate his commitment to her.
In June 2007, Middleton and William insisted they were “just good friends” following reports of a reconciliation. Middleton and her family attended the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadium, where she and William sat two rows apart. The couple were subsequently seen together in public on a number of occasions, and several news sources, including the BBC and the Daily Mail, stated that they had “rekindled their relationship.” Middleton also joined William and Charles on a deerstalking expedition at Balmoral and attended the wedding of William’s cousin, Peter Phillips, even though William, due to a prior commitment, did not. In April 2008, Middleton accompanied William when he was awarded his RAF wings at the Royal Air Force College Cranwell. On 16 June 2008, Middleton attended William’s investiture into the Order of the Garter along with the Royal Family.
Engagement and wedding
Prince William and Kate Middleton became engaged in October 2010 in Kenya, East Africa, during a 10-day trip to the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to celebrate William’s passing his RAF helicopter search and rescue course. Clarence House announced the engagement on 16 November 2010. The couple are to marry in Westminster Abbey on 29 April 2011. It is customary for royal men to receive a dukedom when they marry; possible dukedoms for William after his marriage are Windsor, Clarence, Cambridge, Sussex, Kendal, Avondale, and Strathearn. As the wife of a royal duke and prince, Middleton would assume the title of duchess.
In Letters Patent dated 21 August 1996 (shortly before the divorce of the Prince and Princess of Wales) it was acknowledged that, “by convention”, the wife of a son or grandson of the Sovereign is entitled to the style title or attribute of “Royal Highness”. If William were not given a title, then after the wedding, Middleton would by convention (unless explicitly vetoed by the Queen), be known as Her Royal Highness Princess William of Wales taking her husband’s first name on marriage (as with Princess Michael of Kent). If, however, William is given a title, Middleton would be known as “Her Royal Highness The Duchess [or other rank if appropriate] of N”.
On 16 February 2011, Clarence House announced that Middleton’s and William’s first royal tour of Canada would take place in July 2011. She was formally introduced to public life on 24 February 2011, two months before the wedding, when she and William attended a lifeboat naming ceremony in Trearddur, North Wales.
The couple married on April 29, 2011.
A Lifetime TV movie entitled William and Kate aired in the U.S. on 18 April 2011. Middleton is played by Camilla Luddington and William by Nico Evers-Swindell.
TLC Channel has had a documentary commissioned on the love story of the couple – ‘William and Kate: A Royal Romance’ produced by TVF International in 2011.
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Frank Alesia, American actor (Pajama Party, Riot on Sunset Strip, C’mon, Let’s Live a Little), died from natural causes he was , 65.
Frank Alesia was an American actor and television director died from natural causes he was , 65.. Alesia was best known for his work in the beach party film genre during the 1960s, including Pajama Party in 1964 and Riot on Sunset Strip in 1967. He later directed episodes of the American childrens’ show, Captain Kangaroo, and other television series.
(January 4, 1944 – February 27, 2011)
Alesia, who was born in Chicago, Illinois, moved from Chicago to Los Angeles in 1964. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Alesia became one of the last character actors in the film industry to work under the studio system, which was declining at the time. He appeared in several beach party films of the 1960s, including Pajama Party, Bikini Beach, which starred Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello, Riot on Sunset Strip and Beach Blanket Bingo. His television credits as an actor also included appearances in The Flying Nun, The Odd Couple, Gomer Pyle, That Girl, Room 222 and Laverne & Shirley.
Alesia later directed episodes of Captain Kangaroo, which earned him a Daytime Emmy nomination in 1979. He also joined the crew of Laverne & Shirley beginning in 1980 as both a screenwriter and television director. Ultimately, Alesia directed three episodes of Laverne & Shirley, wrote one episode, and served as an executive consultant for eight episodes of the show.
Alesia left the entertainment industry. He raced and bred thoroughbred horses during his later life.
Frank Alesia died of natural causes at his home in Carlsbad, California, on February 27, 2011, at the age of 65. He was survived by his wife, Sharon, and two children, Dore and Eden Alpert.
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Frank Buckles, , American supercentenarian soldier, last living U.S. World War I veteran, died from natural causes he was 110.
Frank Woodruff Buckles (born Wood Buckles ;) was one of the last three surviving World War I veterans, and the last American veteran of that conflict. Buckles enlisted in the United States Army in 1917 and went through basic training at Fort Riley in Kansas died from natural causes he was 110.. Serving in the Army’s 1st Fort Riley Casual Detachment, he drove ambulances and motorcycles near the front lines.
February 1, 1901 – February 27, 2011)
Given an honorable discharge in 1919, Buckles continued to serve with the New York National Guard from 1922 to 1923. During World War II, he spent the majority of the conflict as a civilian prisoner of war after being captured by the Japanese while working in the shipping business. Following the Second World War, Buckles married in San Francisco in 1946 and moved to Gap View Farm in Charles Town, West Virginia. His wife, Audrey, gave birth to their daughter Susannah in 1955. A widower at age 98, he worked on his farm until the age of 105.
In his last years, he was Honorary Chairman of the World War I Memorial Foundation, campaigning to have the District of Columbia War Memorial renamed the National World War I Memorial, including meeting with President George W. Bush and testifying to Congress. He was awarded the World War I Victory Medal at the conclusion of the First World War, and the Army of Occupation of Germany Medal retroactively after the medal was created in 1941, as well as the French Legion of Honor in his later years.
At the time of his death, Buckles was the oldest verified World War I veteran in the world and the last field veteran of the war. He was buried on March 15, 2011 at Arlington National Cemetery, with full military honors and President Barack Obama in attendance.
Early life and education
Buckles was born to James C. Buckles, a farmer, and Theresa J. Buckles, in Bethany, Missouri on February 1, 1901. William McKinley, a veteran of the Civil War, was President.
Buckles had two brothers, Ashman and Roy, and two sisters, Grace and Gladys. Several family-members lived very long lives; he remembered speaking with his grandmother who was born in 1817, and his father lived to be 97.
In 1702, the first American ancestor named Buckles arrived at Philadelphia from England, and in 1732 the family settled near Charles Town, West Virginia, which was part of Virginia until the Civil War (and which was Frank Buckles’ home town later in life). Seven of Buckles’ ancestors were soldiers in the Revolutionary War including one of his great-grandparents, and he was also descended from a Civil War soldier.
In 1903, Frank—then known as Wood—and his brother Ashman contracted scarlet fever. Frank survived, while Ashman died from the disease, at the age of four. Between 1911 and 1916, Frank attended school in Nevada, Missouri, after which the family moved to the town of Oakwood in Dewey County, Oklahoma.
World War I and interwar years
When America entered World War I, Buckles sought to enlist in the armed forces. He was turned down by the Marine Corps because of his slight weight and for being under 21, and by the Navy, who incorrectly diagnosed him with flat feet. He was successful in enlisting in the Army in August 1917, at 16 years of age. He did not look any older than 16, but the Army was persuaded to accept that he was an adult.
Buckles enlisted on August 14, 1917 and went through basic training at Fort Riley in Kansas. Later that year, he embarked for Europe aboard the RMS Carpathia, which was being used as a troop ship. During the war, Buckles served in England and France, driving ambulances and motorcycles for the Army’s 1st Fort Riley Casual Detachment. Buckles later recalled his service as a doughboy:
There was never a shortage of blown-up bodies that needed to be rushed to the nearest medical care. The British and French troops were in bad shape – even guys about my age looked old and tired. After three years of living and dying inside a dirt trench, you know the Brits and French were happy to see us “doughboys.” Every last one of us Yanks believed we’d wrap this thing up in a month or two and head back home before harvest. In other words, we were the typical, cocky Americans no one wants around, until they need help winning a war.
He was particularly saddened by the war’s impact on children in France, and helped to alleviate their hunger by providing food. After the Armistice in 1918, Buckles escorted prisoners of war back to Germany. One German prisoner gave him a belt buckle inscribed, “Gott mit uns” (meaning God with us), which he kept as a souvenir for the rest of his life.
Buckles was promoted to Corporal on September 22, 1919. Following his honorable discharge in November 1919, he attended the dedication of the Liberty Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, in honor of the Americans who died in World War I, and met General of the Armies John Pershing, who commanded the American Expeditionary Forces in Europe during the war. As the interwar period began, Buckles attended business school in Oklahoma City, and subsequently served with the Seventh Regiment of the New York National Guard from 1922 to 1923, while he lived in New York City and worked there in financial services.
Next came a career as Chief Purser for steamship lines in South America, Europe, and Asia. In the 1930s, he listened as German and British passengers expressed fear about the Nazis, and military officers told him that Germany was equipping for war; Buckles witnessed antisemitism and its effects firsthand while ashore in Germany, and he warned acquaintances in Germany that their country would be brought down by Adolf Hitler, whom he encountered at a German hotel. Also during the 1930s, he received an Army bonus of $800, and gave it to his father who was struggling as a farmer in the Oklahoma Dust Bowl.
World War II and married years
By 1942, Buckles had worked for the White Star, American President, and W.R. Grace shipping companies, and shipping business took him to Manila in the Philippines. He was captured there by the Japanese on December 8, 1941 and spent the next three years and two months in the Los Baños prison camp. He battled starvation, receiving only a small meal of mush served in a tin cup — a utensil he still had at the time of his death. With a weight below 100 pounds, Buckles developed beriberi, yet led his fellow prisoners in calisthenics. Their captors showed little mercy, but Buckles was allowed to grow a small garden, which he often used to help feed children who were imprisoned with him.
They were freed by Allied forces on February 23, 1945. Buckles learned some Japanese during his captivity, and was also fluent in German, Spanish, Portuguese, and French.
After World War II, he moved to San Francisco, and married Audrey Mayo in 1946. In January 1954, retired from steamship work, the couple bought the 330-acre (1.3 km2) Gap View Farm in West Virginia where they raised cattle. Audrey gave birth to their only child, a daughter named Susannah, in 1955. Audrey Buckles died in 1999, and their daughter moved back to the farm to care for him.
Much of Frank Buckles’ military service record was lost in a fire, and the rest has been classified as a high profile record by the Military Personnel Records Center.
 Active centenarian
After the turn of the century, Buckles continued living near Charles Town, West Virginia and was still driving a tractor on his farm at age 103. He stated in an interview with The Washington Post on Veterans’ Day 2007 that he believed the United States should not go to war “unless it’s an emergency”. When asked about the secret of his long life, Buckles replied: “Hope”, adding, “When you start to die… don’t”. He also said the reason he had lived so long was that he “never got in a hurry”. In another interview at age 110, Buckles explained the secret of long life: “Genetics, healthy eating and exercise are vital for a long life”, but “the will to survive is what’s most important.”
Buckles’ life was featured on the Memorial Day 2007 episode of NBC Nightly News. With the death of 108-year-old Harry Richard Landis in February 2008, Buckles became the last surviving American World War I veteran. Buckles said of his place in history, “I never thought I’d be the last one.” The following month, he met with United States President George W. Bush at the White House. The same day, he attended the opening of a Pentagon exhibit featuring photos of nine centenarian World War I veterans arranged by historian and photographer (and later family spokesman) David DeJonge. That summer, the old veteran visited young wounded soldiers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
Buckles was the Honorary Chairman of the World War I Memorial Foundation, which seeks refurbishment of the District of Columbia War Memorial and its establishment as the National World War I Memorial on the National Mall. He was named ABC’s World News Tonight‘s “Person of the Week” on March 22, 2009 in recognition of his efforts to set up the memorial. Those efforts continued, as Buckles appeared before Congress on December 3, 2009, advocating on behalf of such legislation. He was the oldest person who ever testified before Congress. On Armistice Day (i.e. Veterans Day) of 2010, he made a further appeal:
The legislation remained in doubt, because opponents sought relocation of the proposed monument, or alternatively some benefit in return for the District of Columbia’s loss of its exclusively local monument.
A lifelong Shriner, Buckles was given a plaque in December 2009 for being a “famous Shriner”. He was part of the Osiris Shriners of Wheeling, West Virginia, and also a Freemason. Buckles became “the oldest Shriner in Shrinedom”. Other interests of his included genealogy; he had been a member of the West Virginia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution since 1935, and was active for many years in the Sons of Confederate Veterans.
On February 1, 2010—Buckles’ 109th birthday—his official biographer, David DeJonge, announced that he was completing a documentary, entitled “Pershing’s Last Patriot”, on Buckles’ life. The film is a cumulative work of interviews and intimate moments. DeJonge estimates a 2011 release for the documentary, and actor Richard Thomas is expected to narrate the film.
In late 2010, Buckles was still giving media interviews and reached supercentenarian status upon his 110th birthday, on February 1, 2011. On February 27, 2011, Buckles died of natural causes at his home. There were then only two surviving World War I veterans in the world, Florence Green and Claude Choules, who both served in the military of Great Britain.
Honors and awards
For his service during World War I, Buckles received, from the United States government, the World War I Victory Medal, and he qualified for four Overseas Service Bars. Buckles also qualified for the Army of Occupation of Germany Medal due to his post-war service in Europe during the year 1919, and received that medal retroactively after it was created in 1941. He did not qualify for the Prisoner of War Medal for his World War II incarceration, because at the time of his imprisonment by the Japanese he was a civilian. In 1999, French president Jacques Chirac awarded him France’s Legion of Honour.
In 2007, the United States Library of Congress included Buckles in its Veterans History Project, which includes audio, video, and pictorial information on Buckles’ experiences in both world wars, including a 148-minute video interview. In April 2008, a section of West Virginia Route 9, which passes by his Gap View Farm home, was named and dedicated in his honor by then-West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin. The following month, on May 25, 2008, Buckles received the Veterans of Foreign Wars’ Gold Medal of Merit at the Liberty Memorial. He sat for a portrait taken by David DeJonge that will hang in the National World War I Museum, as “the last surviving link.” The portrait was unveiled at the Pentagon in 2008, with Defense Secretary Robert Gates in attendance.
Buckles received the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry‘s Knight Commander of the Court of Honour (KCCH) on September 24, 2008. The KCCH is the last honor bestowed by the Southern Jurisdiction prior to the thirty-third degree, the highest honor in Freemasonry. The ceremony was hosted by Ronald Seale, the Grand Commander of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry for the Southern Jurisdiction.
Commemoration and funeral
Buckles did not meet the criteria for burial at Arlington National Cemetery as he had never been in combat, but special permission was secured on March 19, 2008. That was accomplished with the help of Ross Perot, who had met Buckles at a history seminar in 2001, and who intervened in 2008 with the White House regarding a final resting place.
Upon Buckles’ death three years later on February 27, 2011, President Barack Obama ordered that the American flag be flown at half-staff on all government buildings, U.S. embassies, and at the White House on March 15, 2011 when Buckles would be buried at Arlington. In the days leading up to Buckles’ funeral, the governors of 16 states likewise called for the lowering of their states’ flags to half-staff on March 15.[nb 1]
The United States Senate passed a resolution honoring Buckles as “the last veteran to represent the extraordinary legacy of the World War I veterans” on March 3, 2011. Statements were made by representatives and senators paying tribute to Buckles and the World War I veterans, and concurrent resolutions were proposed in both the Senate and the House of Representatives to allow Buckles to lie in honor in the United States Capitol rotunda. The resolution, however, was reported as being blocked by the Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who sought permission instead for a ceremony to be held in the Amphitheater of Arlington National Cemetery. Various people had supported a Rotunda ceremony, including Buckles’ daughter, a great-grandson of Sir Winston Churchill, and former Republican Party presidential nominee Bob Dole.
Northeast Vernon County High School in Nevada, Missouri, where Buckles went to school, held a service honoring his life and service, on March 8, 2011. Buckles’ home church, Zion Episcopal Church in Charles Town, West Virginia held a memorial service on March 16, 2011 featuring the Episcopal bishop of West Virginia, the local pastor, Buckles’ son-in-law, his nephew, and others.
On March 12, 2011, a ceremony was held at the Liberty Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, to honor Buckles and the “passing of the generation that fought World War I”. The keynote speaker was retired United States Air Force general and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers. The ceremony included a reading of poems, one of which was In Flanders Fields. On March 13 and 14, 2011, a visitation was held at a Washington, D.C. funeral home.
A special ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery’s Memorial Amphitheater Chapel and interment were held on March 15; Buckles was buried with full military honors in plot 34, near his former commander, General of the Armies John J. Pershing. During the ceremony prior to burial, President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden paid their respects and met with Buckles’ family. Buckles’ flag-draped coffin was borne to the burial plot on a caisson drawn by seven horses, and the folded flag was handed to his daughter by United States Army Vice Chief of Staff General Peter W. Chiarelli. The honor guard for Buckles’ funeral included five members of the Blackfeet Warrior Society of Browning, Montana. Reporter Paul Duggan of The Washington Post summed up the occasion:
The hallowed ritual at grave No. 34-581 was not a farewell to one man alone. A reverent crowd of the powerful and the ordinary — President Obama and Vice President Biden, laborers and store clerks, heads bowed — came to salute Buckles’s deceased generation, the vanished millions of soldiers and sailors he came to symbolize in the end.
In Martinsburg, West Virginia, on March 26, 2011, a candlelight vigil was held in memory of Buckles. Donations were taken at the time of the vigil to pay for a planned statue of Buckles holding the reins of General Pershing’s horse. The statue will be placed in his hometown of Charles Town, West Virginia. Buckles had become the oldest surviving World War I veteran in the world, as well as the last field veteran of the war.
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James Gruber, American teacher and early gay rights activist, last surviving member of the Mattachine Society died he was , 82.
James “John” Finley Gruber was an American teacher and early LGBT rights activist died he was , 82.
(August 21, 1928 – February 27, 2011)
James Gruber was born August 21, 1928 in Des Moines, Iowa. Growing up he considered himself bisexual and was involved with both men and women. His father, a former vaudevillian turned music teacher, relocated the family to Los Angeles in 1936. Gruber enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1946 at the age of 18 and was honorably discharged in 1949. Using his G.I. Bill benefits, Gruber studied English literature at Occidental College in Los Angeles.
Gruber met and began a relationship with photographer Konrad Stevens. The couple attended a meeting of an early homophile organization then called the “Society of Fools”. Gruber and Stevens joined the group in April 1951 and became part of the “Fifth Order”, the group’s central leadership. Both men were eager to join despite not having been previously politically involved and not having backgrounds in the Marxist philosophy that informed the group. That lack of familiarity led the group to restate its ideas in ways that those without a Marxist background could understand. Founding member Chuck Rowland recalled the energy the two brought to the group. “It was like magic when they joined. Suddenly everything started to happen.” Following a conversation with co-founder Harry Hay about Medieval masque troops known as “mattachines”, Gruber suggested changing the group’s name from “Society of Fools” to Mattachine Society. Gruber attributed Mattachine’s success to the feeling of acceptance that it fostered. “All of us had known a whole lifetime of not talking, of repression. Just the freedom to open up…really, that’s what it was all about. We had found a sense of belonging, of camaraderie, of openness in an atmosphere of tension and distrust….Such a great deal of it was a social climate. A family feeling came out of it, a great nonsexual emphasis….It was a brand new idea.” In 1953, the Communist ties of several of the Fifth Order led the leadership, including Gruber, to resign.
Through his studies at Occidental, Gruber met the author Christopher Isherwood, who in turn introduced him to W. H. Auden. Isherwood also introduced Gruber to his landlady, Evelyn Hooker. Hooker, a psychologist, pioneered research into sexual orientation that contributed to the removal of homosexuality as a mental illness from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Gruber and Stevens co-founded the Satyrs Motorcycle Club in Los Angeles in 1954.
Growing increasingly disillusioned with life in Los Angeles, Gruber moved to Palo Alto in 1960 and changed his first name to John. He pursued a teaching career at Foothill College and San Francisco State University and also taught or tutored at Cubberly High School, Milpitas High School and de Anza College.
Gruber helped to document the early LGBT movement through interviews with historians, participating in a panel discussion in San Francisco in 2000 commemorating the 50th anniversary of the founding of Mattachine and appearing in the 2001 documentary film Hope Along the Wind about the life of Harry Hay. Gruber suffered increasingly ill health for several years before his death on February 27, 2011, at his home in Santa Clara.
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Eddie Kirkland was an American blues guitarist, harmonicist, singer, and songwriter died from a car accident he was , 88.
Kirkland, known as the “Gypsy of the Blues” for his rigorous touring schedules, played and toured with John Lee Hooker from 1949 to 1962. After his period of working in tandem with Hooker he pursued a successful solo career, recording for RPM Records, Fortune Records, Volt Records, and King Records, sometimes under the stage name Eddie Kirk. Kirkland continued to tour, write and record albums until his death in February 2011.
(August 16, 1923 – February 27, 2011)
Kirkland was born in Jamaica to a mother, aged 12, and first heard the blues from “field hollers” , and raised in Dothan, Alabama until 1935, when he stowed away in the Sugar Girls Medicine Show tent truck and left town. Blind Blake was the one who influenced him the most in those early days. He was placed on the chorus line with “Diamond Tooth Mary” McLean. When the show closed a year later, he was in Dunkirk, Indiana where he briefly returned to school.
He joined the United States Army during World War II. It was racism in the military, he said, that led him to seek out the devil. After his discharge Kirkland traveled to Detroit where his mother had relocated. After a days work at the Ford Rouge Plant, Kirkland played his guitar at house parties, and there he met John Lee Hooker. Kirkland, a frequent second guitarist in recordings from 1949-1962. “It was difficult playin’ behind Hooker but I had a good ear and was able to move in behind him on anything he did.”
Kirkland fashioned his own style of playing open chords, and transformed the rough, porch style delta blues into the electric age by using his thumb, rather than a guitar pick. He secured his own series of recordings with Sid Nathan of King Records in 1953, at Fortune Records in 1958 and, by 1961, on his own album It’s the Blues Man, with the King Curtis Band.
Kirkland became Hooker’s road manager and the two traveled from Detroit to the Deep South on many tours, the last being in 1962 when Hooker abandoned Kirkland to go overseas. Kirkland found his way to Macon, Georgia and began performing with Otis Redding as his guitarist and band leader. As Eddie Kirk, he released “The Hawg” as a single on Volt Records in 1963. The record was overshadowed by Rufus Thomas‘s recordings, and Kirkland, discouraged by the music industry and his own lack of education to change the situation, turned to his other skill and sought work as an auto mechanic to earn a living for his growing family.
In 1970, one of the revivals of the blues was taking place. Peter B. Lowry found Kirkland in Macon and convinced him to record again. His first sessions were done in a motel room, resulting in the acoustic, solo LP Front and Center; his second was a studio-recorded band album, the funky The Devil… and other blues demons. Both were released on Lowry’s Trix Records label. It was during the mid 1970s that Kirkland befriended the British blues-rock band, Foghat. Kirkland remained with Lowry, Trix, and was based in the Hudson Valley for twelve years. It was during this period that Kirkland appeared on Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert with Muddy Waters, Honeyboy Edwards, and Foghat. These were also the years that Kirkland again energized his sound. “Eddie’s thumb pick and fingers style give him freedom to play powerful chord riffs rich in rhythms and harmonic tension. He plays like a funky pianist, simultaneously covering bass lines, chord kick, and counterpoint.”
The 1990s brought Randy Labbe as manager, booking agent and on his own record label, Deluge, recorded Kirkland. Three albums were produced during this Maine period, one live, one with a guest appearance from Hooker and one containing a duet with Christine Ohlman. By 2000, Kirkland was on his own again, always doing his own driving to concerts in his Ford County Squires, crossing the country several times a year. Labeled now as the Road Warrior, “A thickset, powerful man in the waistcoat and pants of a pin strip suit; red shirt, medallion, shades and a black leather cap over a bandanna, his heavy leather overcoat slung over his arm,…. he’s already a Road Warrior par excellence.”
Well into his eighties Kirkland continued to drive himself to gigs along the coast and in Europe, frequently playing with the Wentus Blues Band from Finland.
A documentary short entitled PICK UP THE PIECES was made about a year in Eddie’s life (2010) and it can be viewed on youtube.com. It follows Eddie’s struggles as an uneducated African American trying to make it as a Blues musician.
Kirkland died in an automobile accident on the morning of February 27, 2011 in Crystal River, Florida. The accident occurred at approximately 8:30 a.m. after a bus hit Kirkland’s car, a 1998 Ford Taurus wagon. Reportedly Kirkland attempted to make a U-turn on U.S. 98 and Oak Park Boulevard, putting him directly in the path of a Greyhound bus. The bus struck the vehicle on the right side and pushed it approximately 200 feet from the point of impact. The matter is currently under investigation. Kirkland suffered serious injuries and was transported by helicopter to Tampa General Hospital where died a short time later. The bus driver and 13 passengers on the bus were not hurt.
Kirkland was survived by his wife, Mary, and nine children . He was predeceased by one child Betty, and his first wife Ida.
- It’s Time for Lovin’ to be Done (1952) as Little Eddie Kirkland
- That’s All Right (1952) as Little Eddie Kirkland
- Please Don’t Think I’m Nosey (1953)
- No Shoes (1953)
- Mistreated Woman (1953)
- I Need You Baby (1959)
- Done Somebody Wrong (1959)
- ??? (1961)
- ??? (1962)
- It’s the Blues Man! (Tru-Sound Records, 1962)
- Let Me Walk With You (1964)
- Monkey Tonight (1964)
- Hog Killing Time (1964/65)
- Treat me The Way You Want (1964/65)
- The Hawg Pt. 1 (1965)
- The Hawg Pt. 2 (1965)
- Dem Bones (1965)
- I Found A New Love (1965)
- Front and Center (Trix Records, 1972) (1970)
- The Devil and Other Blues Demons (Trix Records, 1973) (1972)
- Pick Up The Pieces (1980)
- Three Shades Of Blue (1987)
- Have Mercy (Pulsar Records) reissued by (Evidence Records, 1988)
- All Around the World (Deluge Records, 1992)
- Some Like it Raw (Deluge, 1993)
- Where You Get Your Sugar (Deluge, 1995)
- Lonely Street (Telarc Records, 1997)
- Movin’ On (JSP Records, 1999)
Hastings Street Grease, Vol 1 (Blue Suit Records, 1998)
- The Complete Trix Recordings (1999) (32 Records)
Hastings Street Grease, Vol 2 (Blue Suit Records, 1999)
- Democrat Blues (Blue Suit Records, 2004)
- The Way It Was (2005)
- Booty Blues (2006)(2005)
- Crash Boom Bang (2008)
- Foghat Last Train Home (2010)
- Ma-Me-O (2010)
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|(June 21, 1954 – February 27, 2011)|
Miss Universe 1974
Amparo Muñoz came from the town of Vélez-Málaga, Andalusia, where she had won the city title, to compete at the Miss Spain contest held in Lanzarote. After winning, she went on to Miss Universe 1974 Pageant in Manila, Philippines, where she won, only to give up her crown later that year.
She became an instant celebrity in Spain, alongside the likes of Nino Bravo, Pedro Carrasco, Rocío Dúrcal, Rocío Jurado, Camilo Sesto, La Pandilla and other Spanish celebrities of the 1970s, following her victory at Miss Universe with a fruitful show business career.
In 1979, Muñoz acted in the comedy Mama Turns 100, by Carlos Saura. This was followed by performances in 1982’s Todo un Hombre (He’s all a Man), 1999’s A Paradise Under the Stars and 2003’s El Tahur. In the late-1990s, she returned to the mainstream Spanish cinema with the movie Familia, by Fernando León de Aranoa and started a new life as an actress.
Muñoz died on February 27, 2011, aged 56, from undisclosed causes, in her native Málaga.
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Moacyr Jaime Scliar was a Brazilian writer and physician.
Scliar is best known outside Brazil for his 1981 novel Max and the Cats (Max e os Felinos), the story of a young man who flees Berlin after he comes to the attention of the Nazis for having had an affair with a married woman. Making his way to Brazil, his ship sinks, and he finds himself alone in a dinghy with a jaguar who had been travelling in the hold. The story of the jaguar and the boy was picked up by Yann Martel for his own book Life of Pi, winner of the 2002 Man Booker Prize, in which Pi is trapped in a lifeboat with a tiger.
(March 23, 1937 – February 27, 2011)
In 1962, his first book Stories of a Doctor in Formation was published, although later on he regretted having published it so young. His second book The Carnival of the Animals was published in 1968.
Most of Scliar’s writing centers on issues of Jewish identity in the Diaspora and particularly on being Jewish in Brazil. In a recent autobiographical piece, Scliar discusses his membership in the Jewish, medical, Gaucho, and Brazilian tribes. He was elected a life-time member of the Brazilian Academy of Letters in 2003.
His novel The Centaur in the Garden was included among the Greatest Works of Modern Jewish Literature by The National Yiddish Book Center.
Scliar’s fiction has been translated into English, Dutch, French, Swedish, German, Spanish, Italian, Hebrew, Czech. His translated fiction is listed in the UNESCO international bibliography of translations Index Translationum: Scliar, Moacyr
Works in English
- The Centaur in the Garden, Translator: Margaret A. Neves
- The Gods of Raquel, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The One-Man Army, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Carnival of the Animals, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Ballad of the False Messiah, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Strange Nation of Rafael Mendes, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Volunteers, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Enigmatic Eye, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- Max and the Cats , Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The Collected Stories of Moacyr Scliar, Translator: Eloah F. Giacomelli
- The War in Bom Fim, Translator: David William Foster
Short Stories in Anthologie
- Inside My Dirty Head – The Holocaust, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in TROPICAL SYNAGOGUES: SHORT STORIES BY JEWISH LATIN AMERICAN WRITERS, editor Ilan Stavans
- The Plagues, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in A HAMMOCK BENEATH THE MANGOES – STORIES FROM LATIN AMERICA, editor Thomas Colchie
- Van Gogh’s Ear, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in THE VINTAGE BOOK OF LATIN AMERICAN STORIES, editors Carlos Fuentes and Julio Ortega
- The Prophets of Benjamin Bok, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in WITH SIGNS AND WONDER: AN INTERNATIONAL ANTHOLOGY OF JEWISH FABULIST FICTION, editor Daniel M. Jaffe
- The Ballad of the False Mesiah, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in THE OXFORD BOOK OF JEWISH STORIES, editor Ilan Stavans
- The Cow ; The Last Poor Man, translator Eloah F. Giacomelli, in THE OXFORD ANTHOLOGY OF THE BRAZILIAN SHORT STORY, editor K. David Jackson
External Links to Reviews & Articles
- YUPPIES WITH FETLOCKS, review by Jean Franco, New York Times, June 30, 1985 The Centaur in the Garden
- THE CENTAUR IN THE GARDEN, review by Judith Bolton-Fasman, The Jewish Reader, August 2003 Centaur in the Garden
- JONAH WAS CLAUSTROPHOBIC, review by Herbert Gold, New York Times, January 31, 1988 The Strange Nation of Rafael Mendes
- MAIMONIDES IN BRAZIL, review by Mark R. Day, Los Angeles Times, January 24, 1988 Rafael Mendes
- THE BRAZILIANIZATION OF THE YIIDDISHKEIT TRADITION, article by Robert DiAntonio, Latin America Literary Review, Vol. 17, No. 34 (Jul. – Dec. 1989), pp. 40–51 Yiddishkeit Tradition
- RESONANCES OF THE YIDDISHKEIT TRADITION IN THE CONTEMPORARY BRAZILIAN NARRATIVE, by Robert DiAntonio, in Tradition and Innovation: Reflections on Latin American Jewish Writing, State University of New York Press, 1993 An Analysis of Scliar’s Fiction
- MOACYR SCLIAR: SOCIAL DIFFERENCES AND THE TYRANNY OF CULTURE, an analysis of Scliar’s fiction by Nelson H. Vieira, in Jewish Voices in Brazilian Literature: A Prophetic Discourse of Alterity, University Press of Florida, 1996 Social Differences and the Tyranny of Culture
- WLT INTERVIEW WITH MOACYR SCLIAR, article by Luciana Camargo Namorato, World Literature Today, May 1, 2006 Interview with Scliar
- MOACYR SCLIAR, article by Ilan Stavans, Jewish Writers of the 20th Century Moacyr Scliar
- ORACULAR JEWISH TRADITION IN TWO WORKS BY MOACYR SCLIAR, article by Naomi Lindstrom, Luso-Brazilian Review, Vol. 21, No. 2 (Winter, 1984, University of Wisconsin Press) Two Works by Scliar
- THE ENIGMATIC EYE, review by Robert DiAntonio, The International Fiction Review, Vol. 17, No. 1 (1990) Enigmatic Eye
- IN BATTLE WITH THE TERRIFYING BEAST OF MAGICAL REALISM, article by Dolores Flaherty, Roger Flaherty, Chicago Sun-Times, August 5, 1990 Magical Realism
- FACING ONE’S INNER FELINES, review by Linda Morra, Canadian Literature #183 (Winter 2004), Writers Talking, pp. 166-167 Max and the Cats
- MOACYR SCLIAR, BRAZILIAN NOVELIST, DIES AT 73, a review article by William Grimes, BOOK section, The New York Times, March 5, 2011 Moacyr Scliar, Brazilian Novelist
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Edwin Donald “Duke” Snider , nicknamed “The Silver Fox” and “The Duke of Flatbush“, was a Major League Baseball center fielder and left-handed batter who played for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers (1947–62), New York Mets (1963), and San Francisco Giants (1964) died he was , 84,.
Snider was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1980.
(September 19, 1926 – February 27, 2011)
Early life and career
Born in Los Angeles, Snider was nicknamed “Duke” by his father at age five. Growing up in Southern California, Snider was a gifted all-around athlete, playing basketball, football, and baseball at Compton High School, class of 1944. He was a strong-armed quarterback, who reportedly could throw the football 70 yards. Spotted by one of Branch Rickey‘s scouts in the early 1940s, he was signed to a baseball contract out of high school in 1943.He played briefly for the Montreal Royals of the International League in 1944 (batting twice) and for Newport News in the Piedmont League in the same year. After serving in the military in 1945, he came back to play for the Fort Worth Cats in 1946 and for St. Paul in 1947. He played well and earned a tryout with the Brooklyn Dodgers later that year. He started the next season (1948) with Montreal, and after hitting well in that league with a .327 batting average, he was called up to Brooklyn for good during the middle of the season.
Major League Baseball career
In 1949 Snider came into his own, hitting 23 home runs with 92 runs batted in, helping the Dodgers into the World Series. Snider also saw his average rise from .244 to .292. A more mature Snider became the “trigger man” in a power-laden lineup which boasted players, Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Gil Hodges, Billy Cox, Roy Campanella, Carl Erskine, Preacher Roe, Carl Furillo, Clem Labine, and Joe Black. Often compared with two other New York center fielders, fellow Hall of Famers, Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays, he was the reigning “Duke” of Flatbush.
In 1950 he hit .321. But when his average slipped to .277 in 1951, and the Dodgers squandered a 13-game lead to lose the National League pennant to the New York Giants, Snider received heavy media criticism and requested a trade (it didn’t happen).
Usually batting third in the line-up, Snider established some impressive offensive numbers: he hit 40 or more home runs in five consecutive seasons (1953–57), and between 1953-1956 averaged 42 home runs, 124 RBI, 123 runs, and a .320 batting average. He led the National league in runs scored, home runs, and RBIs in separate seasons, and appeared in six post-seasons with the Dodgers (1949, 1952–53, 1955–56, 1959), facing the New York Yankees in the first five and the Chicago White Sox in the last. The Dodgers won the World Series in 1955 and in 1959.
|Duke Snider’s number 4 was retired by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1980.|
Snider’s career numbers declined when the team moved to Los Angeles in 1958. Coupled with an aching knee and a 440-foot right field fence at the cavernous Coliseum, Snider hit only 15 home runs in 1958. However, he had one last hurrah in 1959 as he helped the Dodgers win their first World Series in Los Angeles. Duke rebounded that year to hit .308 with 25 home runs and 88 RBI in 400 at bats while platooning in center field with Don Demeter. Injuries and age would eventually play a role in reducing Snider to part-time status by 1961.
In 1962 when the Dodgers led the NL for most of the season (only to find themselves tied with the hated Giants at the season’s end) it was Snider and third-base coach Leo Durocher who reportedly pleaded with Manager Walter Alston to bring in future Hall of Fame pitcher (and Cy Young award winner that year), Don Drysdale, in the ninth inning of the third and deciding play-off game. Instead Alston brought in Stan Williams to relieve a tiring Eddie Roebuck. A 4-2 lead turned into a 6-4 loss as the Giants rallied to win the pennant. Snider subsequently was sold to the New York Mets. It is said that Drysdale, his roommate, broke down and cried when he got the news of Snider’s departure.
When Snider joined the Mets, he discovered that his familiar number 4 was being worn by Charlie Neal, who refused to give it up. So Snider wore number 11 during the first half of the season, then switched back to 4 after Neal was traded. He proved to be a sentimental favorite among former Dodger fans who now rooted for the Mets. But after one season, Snider asked to be traded to a contending team.
Snider was sold to the San Francisco Giants on Opening Day in 1964. Knowing that he had no chance of wearing number 4, which had been worn by Mel Ott and retired by the Giants, Snider took number 28. He retired at the end of that season.
In Snider’s 18-year career he batted .295 with 407 home runs and 1,333 RBI in 2,143 games. Snider went on to become a popular and respected analyst and play-by-play announcer for the Montreal Expos from 1973 to 1986, characterized by his mellow, low-key style.
1955 Most Valuable Player balloting controversy
Snider finished second to teammate Roy Campanella in the 1955 Most Valuable Player balloting conducted by the Baseball Writers Association of America by just five points, 226-221, with each man receiving eight first place votes. A widely believed story, summarized in an article by columnist Tracy Ringolsby, holds that a hospitalized writer from Philadelphia had turned in a ballot with Campanella listed as his first place and fifth place vote. It was assumed that the writer had meant to write Snider’s name into one of those slots. Unable to get a clarification from the ill writer, the BBWAA, after considering disallowing the ballot, decided to accept it, count the first place vote for Campanella and count the fifth place vote as though it were left blank. Had the ballot been disallowed the vote would have been won by Snider 221-212. Had Snider gotten that now-blank fifth place vote, the final vote would have favored Snider 227-226.
Investigative reporting by Joe Posnanski, however, has suggested that this story is not entirely true. Instead, Posnanski writes that there was a writer who did leave Snider off his ballot and write in Campanella’s name twice, but it was in first and sixth positions, not first and fifth. Had Snider received the sixth place vote, the final tally would have created a tie, not a win for Snider. Additionally, the position was not discarded — everyone lower on the ballot was moved up a spot and the writer, and pitcher Jack Meyer was inserted at the bottom with a 10th place vote.
Snider did, however, win the Sporting News National League Player of the Year Award for 1955, and the Sid Mercer Award, emblematic of his selection by the New York branch of the BBWAA as the National League’s best player of 1955.
In 1995 Snider pleaded guilty to federal tax fraud charges. According to the charges, he had failed to report income from sports card shows and memorabilia sales.
Besides his selection to the Hall of Fame in 1980, in 1999 Snider was ranked 84 on The Sporting News‘s list of “100 Greatest Players”, and was a nominee for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.
Snider married Beverly Null in 1947; they had four children.
Snider died on February 27, 2011, at age 84 of what his family said were natural causes at the Valle Vista Convalescent Hospital in Escondido, California. 
- Eight-time All-Star (1950–56, 1963)
- Six-time Top 10 MVP
- 1950: 9th
- 1952: 8th
- 1953: 3rd
- 1954: 4th
- 1955: 2nd
- 1956: 10th
- .540 slugging percentage (37th all-time)
- .919 OPS (50th all-time)
- 3,865 total bases (87th all-time)
- 407 home runs (41st all-time)
- 1,333 RBI (77th all-time)
- 1,481 runs scored (74th all-time)
- 850 extra-base hits (65th all-time)
- 17.6 at-bats per home run (59th all-time)
- Dodgers career leader in home runs (389), RBI (1,271), strikeouts (1,123), and extra-base hits (814)
- Holds Dodgers single-season record for most intentional walks (26 in 1956)
- Only player to hit four home runs (or more) in two different World Series (1952, 1955)
- One of only two major leaguers with over 1,000 RBI during the 1950s. The other was his teammate, Gil Hodges.
- Duke Snider, Bill Gilbert (1988). The Duke Of Flatbush. Citadel. ISBN 978-0806523637.
- The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn
- Irwin Winehouse, 1964, The Duke Snider Story, Julian Messner, Inc. Library of Congress Catalog No. 64-11367
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