Famous & Infamous Births & Deaths 3rd February

Ophthalmologist/surgeon Giuseppe Nicolò Leonardo Biagio Forlenza who for some reason changed it to the equally long sounding Joseph-Nicholas-Blaise Forlenze kicks today’s posting off given he started using his eyes in 1757. Another person with a long winded name, composer Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy had his first movement in 1809. Bald pated but bushy bearded three time British Prime Minister, Robert Gascoyne-Cecil entered the chamber in 1830. Aircraft designer Hugo Junkers took off in 1859. Known by all the Constipation Street fans as the landlady in The Rovers Return Inn, Doris Speed barrelled along in 1899. Notorious American bank robber Charles Arthur ‘Pretty Boy’ Floyd fancied his chances in 1904. Writer of original book ‘Tales of the South Pacific’, James Albert Michener found the world is my home from 1907. Lesser known member of the Rat Pack, Joseph Abraham Gottlieb or Joey Bishop as he was also known, started the glory years in 1918. Squeezer of abdomens along with inventing a couple of other medical things, Henry Judah Heimlich pushed his way clear in 1920. Crooning wearer of garish jumpers whilst sitting in his rocking chair, Michael Valentine ‘Val’ Doonican gave his parents a few quiet moments from 1927. Fellow easy listening singer born Frank Ableson but known as Frankie Vaughan was too marvellous for words for his parents in 1928. Lead singer with The Temptations, Dennis Edwards put his parents on cloud nine in 1943. Younger brother to Ray in The Kinks, David Russell Gordon ‘Dave’ Davies was face to face with his mum in 1947. Epsom (Surrey) born Warwick Ashley Davis has found life’s too short from 1970. Actress Isla Lang Fisher was definitely, maybe born in 1976.

As for deaths, there are no Popes today so we’ll have to start with Laurence of Canterbury, 2nd Archbishop of Canterbury didn’t have to put with pilgrims banging on his door from 619. King of Denmark, England (for all of five weeks) and Norway, King Cnut’s dad Sweyn Forkbeard carried on letting his beard grow for few weeks after he died in 1014. Having mentioned King of Hawaii Lunalilo a few days ago, here he is again given he dropped his grass skirt in 1874. American outlaw Myra Maybelle Shirley Reed ‘Belle’ Starr found the bullet with her name on it embedded in her back in 1889. 28th President of the United States of America, Thomas Woodrow Wilson gave a silent State of the Union speech in 1924. Birthday boy Hugo Junkers (above), is one of those rare people to die on their birthday and didn’t get to open his presents from 1935. Today’s also known as ‘The Day the Music Died’ given Charles Hardin ‘Buddy’ Holly, Richard Steven Valenzuela (Richie Valens) and Jiles Perry ‘JP’ Richardson aka ‘The Big Bopper’, crashed on their way to Fargo in 1959. Physician who found ways to improve X-rays as well as developing ductile tungsten (think incandescent light bulbs), William David Coolidge saw the light go out in 1975. Best known for her role in The Beverly Hillbillies, Nancy Jane Kulp entered the twilight zone in 1991. Actress Lana Jean Clarkson found her deathstalker in Phil Spector back in 2003. Basketball player Bert H ‘BH’ Born had the wrong surname in 2013. Star of Little House on the Prairie, Richard William Bull suffered a wipeout in 2014. Finally, voice artist Joseph Francis ‘Joe’ Alaskey III was, according to the title of his 1988 film, a lucky stiff in 2016.

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