Here are some of the wonderful souls who have left us this past month:
Jan Groover (April 24, 1943 — Jan. 1, 2012) was an American photographer. In 1987, critic Andy Grundberg noted in The New York Times, “In 1978 an exhibition of her dramatic still-life photographs of objects in her kitchen sink caused a sensation. When one appeared on the cover of Artforum magazine, it was a signal that photography had arrived in the art world - complete with a marketplace to support it.”
Nay Win Maung (June 30, 1962 — Jan. 1, 2012) was a Burmese physician, businessman and pro-democracy activist. Maung advocated a conciliatory approach toward Myanmar’s ruling military junta, which seized power in 1988. At his funeral, wreaths from both the ruling government’s Minister of Industry and National League for Democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi were placed next to each other.
Gordon Kiyoshi Hirabayashi (April 23, 1918 — Jan. 2, 2012) was an American sociologist best known for his principled resistance to the Japanese American internment during World War II. The court case which bears his name, Hirabayashi v. United States, upheld that it was constitutional to impose a curfew on a minority group when a nation was at war with the country from which that group originated.
Angelo Bowers (Date of birth unknown — Jan. 3, 2012) an American comedian, called a “comic’s comic,” who lived and worked in Los Angeles and was killed after a Jeep he was riding in was hit by a drunk driver.
Robert Lee Carter (March 11, 1917 — Jan. 3, 2012) was an American civil rights activist and a United States District Judge. Carter was a lead attorney on Sweatt v. Painter, the U.S. Supreme Court case that successfully proved lack of equality, in favor of a black applicant, in the “separate but equal” doctrine of racial segregation and he presented part of the oral argument to the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education, the U.S. Supreme Court decision to end segregated public schools.
Eve Arnold, Hon. FRPS, OBE (née Cohen; April 21, 1912 — Jan. 4, 2012) was an American photojournalist for Magnum Photos agency. Arnold’s images of Marilyn Monroe on the set of the actress’s last film, The Misfits (1961), were iconic.
John Celardo (Dec. 27, 1918 — Jan. 6, 2012) was an American comic strip and comic book artist best known for illustrating the Tarzan comic strip. In the early 1950s, he succeeded Bob Lubbers as illustrator Tarzan, eventually drawing a total of 4,350 daily strips and 724 Sunday strips.
Mae Laborde (May 13, 1909 — Jan. 9, 2012) was an American television and film actress who began her career at the age of 93 and who was active until her death at age 102. She was best-known for her appearances on Talkshow with Spike Feresten.
Sarah Burke (September 3, 1982 — January 19, 2012) was a Canadian freestyle skier who was a pioneer of the superpipe event. She was a four-time Winter X Games gold medalist, and won the world championship in the halfpipe in 2005. She successfully lobbied the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to have the event added to the Olympic program for the 2014 Winter Olympics. She was considered a medal favorite in the event. Burke died following a training accident in Utah.
Etta James (born Jamesetta Hawkins; Jan. 25, 1938 — Jan. 20, 2012) was an American singer whose style spanned a variety of music genres, including blues, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, soul, gospel and jazz. Starting her career in the mid 1950s, she gained fame with hits such as “Dance With Me, Henry,” “At Last,” “Tell Mama” and “I’d Rather Go Blind.”
James Farentino (Feb. 24, 1938 — Jan. 24, 2012) was an American actor. He appeared in nearly 100 television, film and stage roles, among them The Final Countdown, Jesus of Nazareth and Dynasty.
Special thanks to Wikipedia.org. Several of the above obituaries have been edited from the ongoing Wikipedia project found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deaths_ in_2012.