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Dead Pool 28th February 2021

What a shit week for deaths! I struggled to find anyone noteworthy in the Wiki listings up until 11am on Sunday when Johnny Briggs was announced; you’d think that there would be one or two we’d know, especially since we’re still in the middle of a pandemic! Anyhow, read on… 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Tiger Woods is “fortunate to be alive” following a serious car crash in California, police said on Tuesday. The golfer was conscious and had serious injuries to both legs when found at the crash scene. Authorities said the 45-year-old was in a “serious” condition but was able to communicate with them when they arrived on the scene in Rancho Palo Verdes, California. His car was going downhill on a steep and winding road when it crossed the centre, crashed into the curb and rolled over several times into brush and a tree. A neighbour who lives about 15 metres (50 ft) from the accident spot, a notoriously dangerous stretch of road in the area, called 911 at 7:12am local time. Authorities say that the airbags deployed inside the Genesis GV80 SUV, which was loaned to Woods for the week, and that he had been wearing a seatbelt. Fire chief Daryl Osby said that firefighters used pry tools and an axe to remove Woods from the car through the windscreen. Sheriff Alex Villanueva told a press conference that deputies had found “no evidence of impairment” from drugs or alcohol at the crash site. “No impairment was found at this time but it will be the subject of the investigation,” he said. “It would have been a fatal if the interior of the Genesis GV80 SUV had not remained intact in the crash. The interior of the car was intact which kind of gave him the cushion to survive,” said Mr Villanueva. Mr Villanueva added that there were no signs of braking or skid marks on the road and that it appeared Mr Woods had been “going at a relatively greater speed than normal. Because it is downhill, it slopes, and also it curves. That area has a high frequency of  accidents. It’s not uncommon.” 

Deputy Carlos Gonzalez was the first officer on the scene and described Mr Woods as “calm and lucid” when he spoke to him. “Unfortunately, Mr Woods was not able to stand up under his own power. Mr Woods was seated in the driver’s seat, I made contact with them and made sure he was able to speak to me,” he said. “He seemed calm and lucid at that time. I kept him calm until LA County Fire arrived on the scene. I spoke to him, I asked him what his name was and he said his name was ‘Tiger’. And at that moment I immediately recognised him. I asked him if he knew where he was, what time of day, to make sure he was oriented. He seemed as though he was lucid and calm. He did not seem concerned about his injuries at the time, which is common in traffic accidents when people are in shock. It’s a traumatic experience. It’s not uncommon for people to be focused on unimportant things or even if they are in pain, they may not feel it until much later.” The deputy added that Woods was wearing a seatbelt may have contributed to saving his life. Woods was due to tape two “teaching lessons” at the Rolling Hills Country Club with NFL quarterbacks Drew Brees and Justin Herbert when the accident happened. Officials said there was also a second vehicle accident caused by people slowing to see what had happened, but no one was hurt. 

Former Scotland, Manchester United and Leeds United defender Gordon McQueen has been diagnosed with vascular dementia, his family have confirmed. The 68-year-old, whose career began at St Mirren, played 30 times for Scotland and won the English First Division with Leeds and FA Cup at Manchester United. McQueen went on to manage Airdrie and coach at Middlesbrough, before working as a television pundit. His family said that the former centre-back was formally diagnosed in January. “As a family we felt it was important to let people know, particularly if raising awareness can help others in similar situations,” they said in a statement. “Whilst as a family we’ve found it hard to come to terms with the changes in dad, he has no regrets about his career and has lived life to the full. He had unforgettable experiences in his playing days with Scotland, Manchester United and Leeds United, and also took so much from his coaching and TV work in more recent times.” The family statement, attributed to McQueen’s wife Yvonne, daughters Hayley and Anna, and son Edward, said that McQueen “wants footballers of today’s generation to know there may be risks with persistent heading of the ball”.    

A rooster that had been fitted with a knife for an illegal cockfight has killed its owner in southern India. The bird’s owner was impaled in the groin by the knife as the animal tried to escape. The man died on the way to hospital from a loss of blood. Police are now searching for 15 more people involved in the event, which took place in the village of Lothunur in Telangana state earlier this week. The animal was held at a police station before being transferred to a farm. Police said the animal was being readied to take part in a fight when it tried to escape. Its owner attempted to catch it but was struck by the 7cm-long knife on the animal’s leg during the struggle. Those involved in the event face charges of manslaughter, illegal betting and hosting a cockfight. Cockfighting was made illegal in India in 1960 but fights are still relatively common in rural areas such as Telangana with many falling around the Hindu festival of Sankranti. It’s not the first time an owner has been killed by their rooster. Last year a man in Andhra Pradesh died after he was hit in the neck by a blade attached to his rooster. 

On This Day

  • 1935 – DuPont scientist Wallace Carothers invents nylon. 
  • 1947 – February 28 Incident: In Taiwan, civil disorder is put down with the loss of an estimated 30,000 civilians.  
  • 1953 – James Watson and Francis Crick announce to friends that they have determined the chemical structure of DNA; the formal announcement takes place on April 25 following publication in April’s Nature.  
  • 1954 – The first colour television sets using the NTSC standard are offered for sale to the general public.  
  • 1958 – A school bus in Floyd County, Kentucky hits a wrecker truck and plunges down an embankment into the rain-swollen Levisa Fork river. The driver and 26 children die in what remains one of the worst school bus accidents in U.S. history.  
  • 1975 – In London, an underground train fails to stop at Moorgate terminus station and crashes into the end of the tunnel, killing 43 people.  
  • 1983 – The final episode of M*A*S*H airs, with almost 106 million viewers. It still holds the record for the highest viewership of a season finale.  
  • 1993 – The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents raid the Branch Davidian church in Waco, Texas with a warrant to arrest the group’s leader David Koresh. Four ATF agents and six Davidians die in the initial raid, starting a 51-day standoff.  
  • 2013 – Pope Benedict XVI resigns as the pope of the Catholic Church, becoming the first pope to do so since Pope Gregory XII, in 1415. 

Deaths

  • 1998 – Dermot Morgan, Irish comedian and actor (b. 1952). 
  • 2011 – Jane Russell, American actress and singer (b. 1921). 
  • 2016 – George Kennedy, American actor (b. 1925). 
  • 2019 – André Previn, German-American pianist, conductor, and composer. (b. 1929). 
  • 2020 – Freeman Dyson, British-born American physicist and mathematician (b. 1923). 

What will happen when  Prince Philip dies?

After marrying in 1947, the Duke of Edinburgh has been the longest-reigning consort in British history, standing beside The Queen for over 73 years. At the age of 99, the Duke has rarely been seen in public in the past few years, but earlier this week it was reported he was admitted to hospital ‘as a precautionary measure’. 

We know Buckingham Palace is prepared with two very different protocols when the Royals die. The plan in place for when the Queen passes is known as “London Bridge is Down.” But what will happen when Prince Philip dies?

The Dukes not-so-secret codename is called “Operation Forth Bridge”. The name refers to a railway bridge linking Edinburgh to Fife.

When Philip pegs it, the Lord Chamberlain will consult with the Prime Minister, and then seek the Queen’s specific wishes regarding the death announcement. The rest of the world won’t find out the news until Buckingham Palace officially announces it to the media, most likely through the BBC, probably within hours. If the death occurs overnight, it is expected the death announcement will come at 8am. The UK will then enter a period of national mourning, where flags will be lowered to half-mast. 

During this time the Queen will be given an eight day period of mourning where she is able to forgo her Royal duties and let someone stand in her place if needed. Following this time, she will likely return to her role but behind closed doors. Britain will then enter a 30 day mourning period. Once this longer period of mourning is over, the Queen will return to more public Royal duties and appearances.

As he is the Queen’s husband, the Duke of Edinburgh is entitled to a full state funeral. But in typical Prince Philip style, he has apparently requested for people to not ‘make a fuss’ over his funeral, so although he is entitled to a large funeral, it’s unlikely to happen. 

Philip, who is currently fighting an infection, has been closely involved in the arrangements for his funeral. They are being co-ordinated by the Lord Chamberlain’s Office at Buckingham Palace. Based on Prince Philip’s wishes, it is believed only family, friends and heads of state from Commonwealth countries will be allowed to attend the funeral. Once it comes to laying his body to rest, his body will be buried in the grounds of Windsor Castle in Frogmore Gardens. This is a very personal place for the Queen and Prince Philip as it’s closed off to the public and is often where she walks her dogs. 

Codenames have also been used in the past relating to plans for their funerals. These codenames were first invented so that switchboard operators couldn’t learn of Royal deaths ahead of any public announcements. For example, when King George VI passed away in 1952, the phrase “Hyde Park Corner” was used to communicate with government officials about his death. 

For 21st century Royals, bridges have been used as codenames. For Queen Elizabeth, Operation London Bridge will be used for her death and funeral. Operation Tay Bridge was the name used for the Queen Mother and Diana’s deaths. Operation Menai Bridge refers to the funeral plan for Charles, Prince of Wales. Let’s see if they survive the week… 

Last Week’s Birthdays

John Turturro (64), Rae Dawn Chong (69), Mercedes Ruehl (73), Stephanie Beacham (74), Kate Mara (38), Adam Baldwin (59), Timothy Spall (64), Richard Coyle (49), Chase Masterson (58), Bill Duke (78), Michael Bolton (68), Téa Leoni (55), Sean Astin (50), Lee Evans (57), Daniel Kaluuya (32), Billy Zane (55), Ben Miller (55), Edward James Olmos (74), Dennis Waterman (73), Emily Blunt (38), Dakota Fanning (27), Kelly Macdonald (45), Samara Weaving (29), Josh Gad (40), Thomas Jane (52), Drew Barrymore (46), Jeri Ryan (53), Kyle MacLachlan (62), Julie Walters (71), James Hong (92), Josh Helman (35), Sheila Hancock (88), and Nigel Planer (68). 

Dead Pool 21st February 2021

Let’s dish out some points!!! With the tragically delightful death of the first class malicious  idiot known as Rush Limbaugh, 80 points are happily awarded to Abi, Lee, and to myself! But not to be outdone, Ceri listed him as her Cert, so an amazing 180 points awarded; which cements her position at the top of the table for the time being, but has she peaked too soon? Well done everyone! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

 In Other News

Somehow, the Prince of Wales has managed to visit the central London hospital where his father, the Duke of Edinburgh, remains after feeling unwell. Philip was admitted to the King Edward VII’s hospital as a precaution on Tuesday. A Buckingham Palace source us the duke is likely to remain in hospital into next week. The exact reason for his admission has not been disclosed but his stay is not related to coronavirus as he and Betty had their jabs a few weeks ago. A palace source previously said the duke, who is due to turn 100 in June, had walked into the hospital in Marylebone unaided. Prince Charles, 72, spent about 30 minutes at the hospital on Saturday afternoon, regardless of us peasants not being allowed to do the same. He returned to his Highgrove residence after the visit, a  local 208 mile round trip. Apparently, under England’s current coronavirus lockdown rules, visiting someone in a hospital is considered a “reasonable excuse” to leave home, although many hospitals have put significant limits on visitors. The King Edward VII’s hospital website says visitors “will only be considered in exceptional circumstances” during the pandemic. Does that mean he’s at death’s door or just privileged? 

Linda Nolan has told us that she’s “so scared” of dying. The Nolans star is living with incurable breast cancer, which has now spread to her liver. “I am scared, I won’t lie. I am so scared of dying,” she shared with us at Dead Pool Towers. Linda added that she and her sisters were raised Catholic, and as such she thinks a great deal about whether there’s an afterlife – and whether she’ll get to see her husband Brian and sister Bernie again, both of which died to cancer. “I look at my great-nieces and nephews and think how much I’d love to see them growing up. That’s hard,” she continued. “I want to be here when they have fabulous moments at school and their prom. Then other times I think to myself, ‘Well, you will be here, so shut up! I am really positive, but there are some days when I just give in.” Linda currently has chemotherapy tablets, five in the morning and five at night, and heads to the hospital once every three weeks to have her bloods done and to speak with her consultant. Meanwhile, there’s “no sign” of cancer at all in her sister Anne anymore. “It’s amazing news,” Linda said bitterly, “She got that news the week before I went in and mine had fucking spread like melted butter over a toasted crumpet.” Meanwhile Linda’s launched her own gin, vowing her cancer won’t stop her from cashing in as much as she can. With that mind, you might want to read her upcoming book Stronger Together, out in April, which tells how the sisters came together to exploit the dying one for a mediocre amount of cash and media coverage.  

Bob Dole, the former longtime Kansas senator and 1996 Republican presidential nominee, said on Thursday that he has stage 4 lung cancer. “Recently, I was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer. My first treatment will begin on Monday,” Dole, 97, said in a statement. “While I certainly have some hurdles ahead, I also know that I join millions of Americans who face significant health challenges of their own,” Dole added. Dole served as a U.S. senator from Kansas from 1969 to 1996 and also served as both the Senate majority and minority leader during his long career. He was the GOP presidential nominee in 1996, losing to Bill Clinton. President Joe Biden visited his ‘close friend’ and said the former Republican Senator is ‘doing well’. 

Jeanette Lee, the professional pool player often known by her nickname “The Black Widow,” is battling stage 4 ovarian cancer. Lee, 49, announced her terminal diagnosis last Wednesday.  A single mother to three girls — Savannah, 10, Chloe, 11, and Cheyenne, 16 — Lee said in the release, “I intend to bring the same resolve I brought to the billiards table to this fight.” A GoFundMe has been created in Lee’s name, and its purpose is to “ensure that the girls are appropriately cared for and can afford to go to college.” “Jeanette’s largest and most pressing concern is the well being of her three young girls,” the fundraiser’s description reads, in part. “The future care, well-being and education of her girls is the biggest cause of anxiety for her.” It also went into more details about her diagnosis: “The cancer has fully metastasized into her lymph nodes and the prognosis is dire. At this stage, her doctors say she has a few months to a year left to live.” Lee began playing pool in 1989, and has been in the sport professionally for 30 years. She was ranked the world’s No. 1 female pool player in the ’90s and has come out on top of various competitions over the years. 

On This Day

  • 1804 – The first self-propelling steam locomotive makes its outing at the Pen-y-Darren Ironworks in Wales. 
  • 1947 – In New York City, Edwin Land demonstrates the first “instant camera”, the Polaroid Land Camera. 
  • 1952 – The British government, under Winston Churchill, abolishes identity cards in the UK to “set the people free”. 
  • 1965 – Malcolm X is assassinated while giving a talk at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem. 

Deaths

  • 1965 – Malcolm X, American minister and activist (b. 1925; assassinated). 
  • 2002 – John Thaw, English actor and producer (b. 1942). 
  • 2018 – Billy Graham, American evangelist (b. 1918). 
  • 2019 – Peter Tork, American musician and actor (b. 1942). 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Elliot Page (34), Jennifer Love Hewitt (42), Sophie Turner (25), Tuppence Middleton (34), Kelsey Grammer (66), Tyne Daly (75), Tituss Burgess (42), Anthony Daniels (75), Martha Hackett (60), Charlotte Church (35), Chelsea Peretti (42), Anthony Head (67), Sidney Poitier (94), Brenda Blethyn (75), Rihanna (33), Cindy Crawford (55), Trevor Noah (37), Millie Bobby Brown (17), Benicio Del Toro (54), Jeff Daniels (66), Ophelia Lovibond (35), Ray Winstone (64), Leslie Ash (61), John Travolta (67), Molly Ringwald (53), Matt Dillon (57), Cybill Shepherd (71), Dr. Dre (56), Yoko Ono (88), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (40), Rene Russo (67), Bonnie Wright (30), Lou Diamond Phillips (59), Dominic Purcell (51), Paris Hilton (40), Rory Kinnear (45), Alejandro Jodorowsky (92), Barry Humphries (87), Patricia Routledge (92), Brenda Fricker (76), Michael Jordan (58), Ed Sheeran (30), Elizabeth Olsen (32), The Weeknd (31), Christopher Eccleston (57), LeVar Burton (64), Ice-T (63), Amanda Holden (50), June Brown (94), John McEnroe (62), Jane Seymour (70), and Matt Groening (67).

Dead Pool 14th February 2021

Welcome to the not so Valentine’s Special, where I have endeavoured to not mention it… Oops! A fairly run of the mill edition this week, no points awarded but a few small bits to read. 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Ashley Judd has been taken to hospital following a “catastrophic” accident in the Congo after suffering a shattered leg.. The actress, 52, revealed the news during an an Instagram Live that she was resting in a “trauma unit in beautiful South Africa” after sustaining “massive catastrophic injuries” during a rainforest excursion. Judd said that she had been travelling in the Congo when she tripped over a fallen tree. She recalled lying on the forest floor for five hours, and “howling like an animal” while being carried back to her camp by her “Congolese brothers”. She added that she faded in and out of consciousness during the journey out of the rainforest and to the capital of Kinshasa, and had kept herself awake by reciting Bible passages. She was finally taken to hospital in South Africa after what she described as an “incredibly harrowing” experience. In the Instagram Live, Judd, said that the accident was a reminder of her privilege as a person of means travelling in the Congo, explaining: “The difference between a Congolese person and me is disaster insurance that allowed me, 55 hours after my accident, to get to an operating table in South Africa.” 

Fernando Alonso suffered a broken jaw after he was involved in a road accident while cycling, his Formula One team have confirmed. The 39-year-old suffered the accident while riding in Switzerland on Thursday. The Spanish driver was due to return to the grid this season following two years away. And while his injuries are understandably serious, Alpine F1 expect him to be “fully operational” by the time the season begins in Bahrain next month. A statement from the team read: “Following his cycling accident yesterday Fernando Alonso was kept under observation in hospital in Switzerland. “Medics discovered a fracture in his upper jaw and conducted a successful corrective operation. The attending medical team are satisfied with his progress. Fernando will remain under observation in hospital for a further 48 hours. Looking forward, after a few days of complete rest, he will be able to progressively resume training. We expect him to be fully operational to undertake preparation for the season.” In 2018, Alonso quit the sport and set his sights on becoming only the second driver since Britain’s Graham Hill to complete the so-called Triple Crown – winning the Monaco Grand Prix, Le Mans 24 Hours and Indy 500. Although he won the famous sportscar endurance race in 2018 and 2019 he has not been able to crack the Indy 500, despite a remarkable effort on his first appearance back in 2017.  

As you all know, I had written a piece on Capt. Tom Moore for last weeks edition, but I chickened out publishing it because I felt it was edging on going a little too far. Well, somebody didn’t listen to their own inner monologue and has now been charged in connection with an offensive social media tweet about the dead Captain. The 35-year-old man is due to appear in court in Lanarkshire later this week! A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “On Friday 5th February 2021, we received a report of an offensive tweet about Sir Captain Tom Moore who died on Tuesday 2nd February. A 35-year-old man has subsequently been arrested and charged in connection with communication offences and is due to appear at Lanark Sheriff Court on Wednesday 17th February.” I have no idea what was tweeted, but I’m fairly sure it wasn’t as bad as what I wrote last week! Maybe I did make the correct judgement call? Looks like you can’t make offence online nowadays without finding yourself cancelled or arrested. 

On This Day

  • 1779 – James Cook is killed by Native Hawaiians near Kealakekua on the Island of Hawaii.  
  • 1849 – James Knox Polk becomes the first serving President of the United States to have his photograph taken.  
  • 1852 – Great Ormond St Hospital for Sick Children, the first hospital in England to provide in-patient beds specifically for children, is founded in London.  
  • 1924 – The Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company changes its name to International Business Machines Corporation (IBM).  
  • 1929 – Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre: Seven people, six of them gangster rivals of Al Capone‘s gang, are murdered in Chicago. 
  • 1989 – Iranian leader Ruhollah Khomeini issues a fatwa encouraging Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie, author of The Satanic Verses.  
  • 1990 – The Voyager 1 spacecraft takes the photograph of planet Earth that later becomes famous as Pale Blue Dot. 
  • 2005 – YouTube is launched.

Deaths

  • 1779 – James Cook, English captain, cartographer, and explorer (b. 1728). 
  • 1975 – P. G. Wodehouse, English novelist and playwright (b. 1881). 
  • 1996 – Bob Paisley, English footballer and manager (b. 1919). 
  • 2010 – Dick Francis, Welsh jockey and author (b. 1920). 
  • 2018 – Morgan Tsvangirai, 2nd Prime Minister of Zimbabwe (b. 1952). 

Last Meals

Anthony Sowell was an American serial killer and rapist known as the Cleveland Strangler. He was arrested in October 2009 after the bodies of eleven women were discovered by police at his home, in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood of Cleveland, Ohio.  

Sowell was one of seven children born to single parent Claudia “Gertude” Garrison. Seven other children belonging to Sowell’s sister also lived in the household, having moved in after her death following a chronic illness. According to Sowell’s niece, Leona Davis, Garrison subjected them to physical abuse while her own children watched from adjacent rooms. In one incident, Garrison forced Davis to strip naked in front of the other children, then whipped her with electrical cords until she bled. Sowell himself began raping his niece on an almost daily basis for two years, starting when she was 10. It was also reported by Davis that the other males in the household also participated in the rapes. 

In 1989, Sowell attacked Melvette Sockwell, who was three months pregnant at the time, when she attempted to leave his home. He tied her up and choked her so badly that she thought that she was going to die. He was charged with kidnapping, rape, and attempted murder for which Sowell pled guilty and served a 15-year sentence. He was released from prison in 2005.

Unfortunately, this did not serve as a deterrent for his murderous actions. He said he was a master looking for a submissive partner to “tame” and neighbours complained of a foul odor coming from his home. He also, somehow, dated the niece of the Cleveland Mayor Frank G Jackson for a time, who smelled the decaying bodies but was told various different stories by Sowell. Somewhere between 2007-2008, she moved out. 

No one knew about the bodies until 2009 when Latundra Billups was invited to Sowell’s home for a drink. After he had a couple of drinks, he assaulted, choked, and raped her. Billups went to the police who arrived with an arrest warrant. Sowell had fled, but he was captured two days later. Either way, police went inside which is when they started to find the bodies. 

Much like John Wayne Gacy, Sowell’s 11 murder victims  were found in and around his home. Bodies were found in the basement, in crawl spaces, in the backyard. One skull was found in a bucket. Most victims were killed by manual strangulation, leading to the name the Cleveland Strangler. Some of the bodies still had the ligatures used to kill them on them.

In addition to the murders, Sowell also raped three women. He would invite them home to smoke crack cocaine with him and then assault them. He would be charged with 11 counts of aggravated murder and 74 counts of rape, kidnapping, tampering with evidence, and abuse of a corpse. Initially, he pled “not guilty by reason of insanity”, but later changed it to just “not guilty”.  Sowell was convicted of his crimes and sentenced to death. He was still exhausting his appeals as late as May 2020. 

On January 21st 2021, he began receiving end-of-life care at the Franklin Medical Centre for a terminal illness and died on the 8th February. His last meal has not been released.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Simon Pegg (51), Danai Gurira (43), Andrew Robinson (79), Neal McDonough (55), Mena Suvari (42), Stockard Channing (77), Kim Novak (88), Josh Brolin (53), Christina Ricci (41), Michael Ironside (71), Arsenio Hall (65), Maud Adams (76), Natalie Dormer (39), Jennifer Aniston (52), Damian Lewis (50), Thomas Turgoose (29), Sheryl Crow (59), Chloë Grace Moretz (24), Elizabeth Banks (47), Keeley Hawes (45), Laura Dern (54), Robert Wagner (91), Philip Glenister (58), Holly Willoughby (40), Tom Hiddleston (40), Michael B. Jordan (34), Rose Leslie (34), Joe Pesci (78), Ciarán Hinds (68), Mia Farrow (76), Mary Steenburgen (68), Seth Green (47), Nick Nolte (80), and Ethan Phillips (66).

Dead Pool 7th February 2021

Goodness me, what a week! A points avalanche!!!! Let’s start with Capt. Tom Moore, 50 points to Ceri and Paul C, but an exceptional start for newb Sarah as she had him as her Cert, 150 points!! Onto Christopher Plummer,  Sarai had him as her Cert, 159 points and Paul G also gets 59 points. Now Leon Spinks, Laura and Ron had him as their Cert, 183 points each, and 83 points to Paul C. who managed to guess two people in one week, that doesn’t happen very often! Well done all of you. A strong start to the year so far. 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Jennifer Lawrence has sustained minor injuries after a glass explosion stunt went wrong on the set of Don’t Look Up. The forthcoming Netflix comedy – which stars Lawrence opposite Leonardo DiCaprio – has been forced to temporarily suspend production following the disruption. Lawrence had been shooting a scene with Timothee Chalamet when the controlled glass explosion sent shards of glass flying, causing minor injuries to the Hunger Games star. While the details of her injuries aren’t entirely clear, but a malfunction resulted in “shards of glass flying.” As a result of the incident, production on Don’t Look Up has been paused as of Friday, though Lawrence is expected to return to the film’s Boston set on Monday. Don’t Look Up stars Lawrence and DiCaprio as two low-level scientists who attempt to warn the world’s population of an impending meteor strike due in six months.

Jazz legend Tony Bennett has revealed that he has been living with Alzheimer’s Disease for the last four years. The singer, who is 94, made the announcement in AARP Magazine, which focuses on issues affecting people over the age of 50. The article conveys how the condition has affected Bennett’s memory and ability to recognise everyday objects. His wife Susan told the magazine that the star is “not always sure where he is or what is happening around him”. However, Bennett has so far been spared many of the worst characteristics of the disease – including the disorientation that can cause patients to wander from home and episodes of terror, rage or depression. Bennett has been a star since 1951, scoring hits with songs like I Left My Heart In San Francisco and The Shadow Of Your Smile. Some of his biggest successes have come in the last decade, including the chart-topping duets album with Lady Gaga, Cheek to Cheek, which won a Grammy in 2015. The singer’s neurologist Gayatra Devi, told us that, prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, Bennett’s touring schedule “kept him on his toes and also stimulated his brain in a significant way. However, the decimation of the live music industry has been a real blow from a cognitive perspective, his memory, prior to the pandemic, was so much better. And he’s not alone. So many of my patients are negatively affected by the isolation, the inability to do the things that matter to them,” he said. “For someone like Tony Bennett, the big high he gets from performing was very important.”  said Devi. However, Devi stressed that Bennett was still “doing so many things, at 94, that many people without dementia cannot do. He really is the symbol of hope for someone with a cognitive disorder,” he added.   

Michael Schumacher’s family are set to release rare footage of the F1 legend in a new documentary. The German F1 legend was involved in a devastating skiing accident in the French Alps in 2013 that has left him in a medically-induced coma. Out of respect and eventual disinterest, the world’s media has given him and his family privacy. Only a small handful of people have been allowed to visit the seven-time World Championship winner. His condition has been kept a close-guarded secret by his family. According to PlanetF1, a new documentary titled ‘Schumacher’ is set to be released that will contain private recordings that the German’s family has provided. The documentary is the work of Award-winning German filmmakers Michael Wech and Hanns-Bruno Kammertons. Sabine Kehm, Schumacher family spokesperson, said: “The film portrays Michael’s impressive career, but also many of the facets of the complex man. Many fans will be desperate to see the new documentary with Schumacher such a popular figure in and out of Formula One. 

On This Day

  • 1301 – Edward of Caernarfon (later king Edward II of England) becomes the first English Prince of Wales. 
  • 1497 – In Florence, Italy, supporters of Girolamo Savonarola burn cosmetics, art, and books, in a “Bonfire of the vanities”.  
  • 1900 – A Chinese immigrant in San Francisco falls ill to bubonic plague in the first plague epidemic in the continental United States.  
  • 1940 – The second full-length animated Walt Disney film, Pinocchio, premieres. 
  • 1984 – Astronauts Bruce McCandless II and Robert L. Stewart make the first untethered space walk using the Manned Manoeuvring Unit.  
  • 1991 – The Troubles: The Provisional IRA launched a mortar attack on 10 Downing Street in London, thirty years later, bet they’re planning some troubles again! 
  • 1992 – The Maastricht Treaty is signed, leading to the creation of the European Union, Farage shits himself. 
  • 2013 – The U.S. state of Mississippi officially certifies the Thirteenth Amendment, becoming the last state to approve the abolition of slavery.  

Deaths

The Early Days of Plymouth, New England 

In 1642, as a wave of sin swept over the colony of Plymouth, New England, a man named Thomas Graunger entered the history books in the most ignoble way imaginable. 

Graunger became one of the first people hanged in the Plymouth Colony (the first hanged in Plymouth or in any of the colonies of New England being John Billington) and the first known juvenile to be sentenced to death and executed in the territory of today’s United States. Graunger, at the age of 16 or 17, was convicted of “buggery with a mare, a cow, two goats, five divers sheepe, two calves, and a turkey”, according to court records of 7th September 1642. 

Basically, someone walked in on Granger, a teenage servant, while he was engaged in “lewd practice towards the mare,” and the young man eventually confessed to having sex with the horse regularly, along with several other farm animals. 

Then, as now, bestiality was a serious crime. But back in 1642, the punishment was strange by modern standards: The authorities worked to determine which animals Granger had had sex with, following the laws set down in Leviticus 20:15 (“And if a man shall lie with a beast, he shall surely be put to death: and ye shall slay the beast”), then killed them in front of him before executing Granger himself by “hanging until he was dead”. They then buried the animals, as opposed to eating them, because their bodies had been defiled.

The killing and burying of the animals would have been a hardship for the colonists and was therefore another indicator of how seriously this crime was viewed: For an agricultural society this slaughter of all the farm animals was a substantial economic sacrifice. 

Granger’s acts were extreme, but there are other examples from that period of the Pilgrims stuffing more than just turkeys. Plymouth court records from 1642 tell the story of Edward Michell, who was accused of “lewd and sodomitical practices tending to sodomy with Edward Preston, and other lewd carriages with Lydia Hatch,” who was also punished for sharing a bed with her brother. All this came to light because Preston apparently propositioned a man named John Keene, who turned him down and told the authorities. Keene was then ordered to watch while the two Edwards were whipped. Another, tamer, example of sexual wrongdoing was the case of John Casley and his fiancee, Alis, who were discovered to have had sex before their marriage; John was whipped while Alis was forced to look on from the stocks. 

The first woman hanged on the gallows in Plymouth Colony was 32-year-old Alice Bishop in 1648 for the murder of her young daughter; an apparently motiveless crime which must have shocked her fellow settlers. Almost nothing is known about Alice’s early life, she was marry twice and had three daughters: Abigail, Martha and Damaris. By 1648, Alice was living with her second husband, the Plymouth newcomer Richard Bishop, who was Damaris’s father. The family seems to have been unexceptional, just another household trying to eke out a living in a harsh and unforgiving environment. Somewhere along the line, something went very wrong. 

On July 22nd, 1648, while Richard Bishop was away from home, family friend Rachel Ramsden dropped by the Bishops’ residence and spent some time with Alice. Alice’s four-year-old middle child, Martha Clark, was asleep in bed in the loft, which was accessible by ladder. (Where the other two children were has not been recorded.) At some point, Alice gave Rachel a kettle and asked her to go fetch some buttermilk from a neighbour’s house. When Rachel returned, she noticed blood on the floor beneath the ladder. Alice was “sad and dumpish,” and when Rachel asked her what was going on, she wordlessly pointed up at the loft. Rachel climbed up to have a look: there was blood everywhere; Martha’s mattress was drenched in it. 

Rachel fled the house in a panic, found her parents and told them she thought Alice had murdered her daughter. Her father rushed to find the colonial governor. A posse of twelve armed men assembled and went to the Bishop house. By the time the men arrived, Alice was in hysterics. They found Martha’s body lying on her left side, “with her throat cut with divers gashes crose wayes, the wind pipe cut and stuke into the throat downward, and the bloody knife lying by the side.” Nothing could be done for her.

Alice freely admitted she had murdered her daughter and said she was sorry for it, but she claimed she had no recollection of the crime. When they asked her why she’d done it, she had no answer for them. She was tried, found guilty and sentenced to be hanged by the neck until she was dead. Today this crime would probably be attributed to Post Partum depression. 

Last Week’s Birthdays

James Spader (61), Tina Majorino (36), Ashton Kutcher (43), Deborah Ann Woll (36), Chris Rock (56), Eddie Izzard (59), Garth Brooks (59), Emo Philips (65), Alice Eve (39), Mike Farrell (81), Kevin Whately (70), Axl Rose (59), Michael Sheen (52), Jennifer Jason Leigh (59), Christopher Guest (73), Charlotte Rampling (75), Tony Jaa (45), Gabrielle Anwar (51), Natalie Imbruglia (46), Alice Cooper (73), Jim Jefferies (44), Isla Fisher (45), Bridget Regan (39), Warwick Davis (51), Morgan Fairchild (71), Gemma Arterton (35), Brent Spiner (72), David Jason (81), Shakira (44), Sherilyn Fenn (56), Michael C. Hall (50), Harry Styles (27), and Lisa Marie Presley (53).

Dead Pool 31st January 2021

A fairly average week, no points to award but plenty to read, with a big thanks to Nickie for finding a great story for us below. Remember to message a link if you find a newsworthy tale for the newsletter! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Larry King’s widow Shawn King has shared her husband’s cause of death as well as his final words to her. The veteran TV host died on 23rd January at the age of 87. In a recent interview with Dead Pool Weekly, Shawn King, 61, said her husband died as a result of sepsis, a life-threatening condition that occurs in reaction to an infection. Earlier in January, Larry King was treated for Covid-19, but according to Shawn King, he had recovered from the illness by the time the sepsis occurred. “It was an infection, it was sepsis,” she told us. “Well, he was finally ready to go, I will tell you that. You know, he never wanted to go but his sweet little body was just, it had just been hit so many times with so many things and once we heard the word Covid, all of our hearts just sunk. But he beat it, you know, he beat it, but it did take its toll and then the unrelated infection finally is what took him, but boy, he was not gonna go down easily.” Shawn King said she and her husband were able to speak via FaceTime while he was in the hospital. “It was hard for him to talk, but the one message that he wanted to make sure I heard was, ‘I love you, take care of the boys,’” she said. The pair have two sons: Chance King, 21, and Cannon King, 20.  

Rapper Martell Derouen, whose cousin is Beyoncé, has reportedly been shot dead aged 34. Derouen – who raps under the name Kardone – was discovered during a welfare check by police officers on Tuesday. Someone had called the police after not hearing from the musician in several days, with officers visiting his apartment around midday. Maintenance staff helped police access the apartment. Inside, they reportedly found Derouen dead with a gunshot wound. Speaking to local news network, Derouen’s wife said that the musician “didn’t deserve this”. Local police are said to be searching for 21-year-old Sasha Skare as a suspect, with law enforcement encouraging anyone with information to come forward. Born in San Antonio, Derouen spent much of his childhood in Louisiana, and was later signed to Sony-affiliated record label The Orchard. He released a full length album titled Trunk Bag in 2016, while his last single “Magic” came out in 2020.

One of the main suspects in the infamous unsolved hijacking of a flight from Portland to Seattle 50 years ago carried out by the mysterious “DB Cooper” has died in California aged 94. Sheridan Peterson, who passed away on 8th January was thought to possibly be the “Dan Cooper” who hijacked Northwest Orient Flight 305 on Thanksgiving eve 1971. Mr Cooper handed a flight attendant a note saying that he had a bomb and then demanded $200,000 in $20 bills and four parachutes. When the flight landed in Seattle, the hijacker exchanged the flight’s 36 passengers for the money and parachutes and ordered the flight crew to take off and head for Mexico City. Somewhere between Seattle and Reno, Nevada, Mr Cooper jumped from the rear door of the aircraft with a parachute and the ransom money. The pilots landed the plane safely, but the identity of the hijacker and what happened next remains a mystery to this day. Mr Peterson was considered a chief suspect due to his experience as a smokejumper — a firefighter that parachutes into remote areas to tackle wildfires — and love of skydiving. He served as a marine during the Second World War and later worked as a technical editor at Seattle-based Boeing. Indeed he wrote about possibly being DB Cooper in an article for the National Smokejumper Association’s magazine. “Actually, the FBI had good reason to suspect me,” he wrote. “Friends and associates agreed that I was without a doubt DB Cooper. There were too many circumstances involved for it to be a coincidence. At the time of the heist, I was 44 years old. That was the approximate age Cooper was assumed to have been, and I closely resembled sketches of the hijacker.” On another occasion a photo came to light from a Boeing newsletter showing him dressed in exactly the same manner as the hijacker was said to have been during the 1971 flight. Mr Peterson insisted that he was in Nepal at the time of the hijacking, but nevertheless was still considered a prime suspect by the FBI. Eric Ullis, an entrepreneur from Phoenix, spent years trying to establish the real identity of DB Cooper. He concluded that he was “98 per cent” certain that  Mr Peterson had carried out the daring heist. DNA collected from a tie Mr Cooper was wearing on the plane has been tested, but no match was found. Mr Peterson is by no means the only person identified as DB Cooper. An HBO documentary released in 2020 called The Mystery of DB Cooper profiled several contenders. Another theory is that Mr Cooper did not survive when he jumped from the aircraft as he would not have been able to steer his parachute and was over a wooded area in unsuitable clothing and footwear. In 1980, a young boy found a rotting package of $20 bills totalling $5,800 with serial numbers that matched those of the ransom money lending credence to the theory. 

On This Day

  • 1606 – Gunpowder Plot: Four of the conspirators, including Guy Fawkes, are executed for treason by hanging, drawing and quartering, for plotting against Parliament and King James.  
  • 1953 – A North Sea flood causes over 1,800 deaths in the Netherlands and over 300 in the United Kingdom.  
  • 1961 – Project Mercury: Ham the Chimp becomes the first hominid to travel into outer space.  

Deaths

  • 1606 – Guy Fawkes, English conspirator, leader of the Gunpowder Plot (b. 1570). 
  • 1956 – A. A. Milne, English author, poet, and playwright, created Winnie-the-Pooh (b. 1882). 
  • 2016 – Terry Wogan, Irish-British radio and television host (b. 1938)

The Hotel of Death

If you ever decide to stay in Los Angeles, perhaps to hang about the infamous Cedars-Sinai Hospital to see all the celebrities who are dying, you might want to stay at The Cecil Hotel. The Cecil’s a budget hotel in Downtown Los Angeles which opened in 1927. It has 700 guest rooms which were refurbished in 2017, sounds lovely! However the has a checkered history. 

Almost immediately after it was built, the area where the Cecil Hotel is located began to decline, suicides and other violent deaths on the premises became more frequent. The first documented suicide at the Cecil was reported in 1931, when a guest named W.K. Norton died in his room after taking poison capsules. Throughout the 1940’s and 1950’s, more suicides at the Cecil occurred. By the 1960’s, longtime residents had begun to call the Cecil “The Suicide.” 

In addition to suicides, the Cecil’s history includes other kinds of violence and disturbing happenings. It also became a notorious rendezvous spot for adulterous couples, drug activity, and a common ground for sex workers. 

In 1947, Elizabeth Short, dubbed by the media as the Black Dahlia, was rumoured to have been spotted drinking at the Cecil’s bar in the days before her notorious, and to date  unsolved, murder. 

In 1964, a retired telephone operator named “Pigeon Goldie” Osgood, who had been a well-known and well-liked long-term resident at the hotel, was found dead in her room. She had been raped, stabbed, and beaten, and her room ransacked. A man named Jacques B. Ehlinger was charged with Osgood’s murder but was later cleared. Her death remains unsolved.  

Perhaps most infamously, in the 1980s the hotel was rumoured to be the residence of serial killer Richard Ramirez, nicknamed the “Night Stalker”. Ramirez had been a regular presence on the skid row area of Los Angeles, and according to a hotel clerk who claims to have spoken to him, Ramirez is rumoured to have stayed at the Cecil for a few weeks. Ramirez may have engaged in part of his killing spree while staying there. Another serial killer, Austrian Jack Unterweger, stayed at the Cecil in 1991, possibly because he sought to copy Ramirez’s crimes. While there, he strangled and killed at least three sex workers, for which he was convicted in Austria. He hanged himself shortly after his conviction.  

In 2013, the Cecil (by then re-branded as the “Stay on Main”) became the focus of renewed attention when surveillance footage of a young Canadian student, Elisa Lam, behaving erratically in the hotel’s elevator, went viral. The video depicts Lam repeatedly pressing the elevator’s buttons, walking in and out of the elevator, and possibly attempting to hide from someone. Her naked body was subsequently discovered in a water supply cistern on the hotel roof, following complaints from residents of odd-tasting water and low pressure. How she got into the cistern remains a mystery. The Los Angeles County Coroner ruled her death accidental due to drowning, with bipolar disorder being a “significant” factor. Tasty! 

If you fancy reading through the whole list of suicides and murders at The Cecil, follow this link. 

You might think you’ve never heard of the place before, but back in 1987, U2 performed an impromptu live concert on the rooftop of a one-story building on the corner of 7th and Main in Downtown Los Angeles, next door to the Cecil Hotel. The performance, with the hotel featured as a backdrop, was filmed and commercially released as a music video for the release of the band’s song “Where the Streets Have No Name”. The hotel was also the inspiration for Barton Fink, which should give you a good idea of the atmosphere of the place. 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Jonathan Banks (74), Justin Timberlake (40), Minnie Driver (51), Dexter Fletcher (55), Marcus Mumford (34), Christian Bale (47), Olivia Colman (47), Gene Hackman (91), Vanessa Redgrave (84), Phil Collins (70), Heather Graham (51), Tom Selleck (76), Katharine Ross (81), Sam Trammell (52), Marc Singer (73), Oprah Winfrey (67), Adam Lambert (39), Tim Healy (69), Ariel Winter (23), Elijah Wood (40), Tom Hopper (36), Alan Alda (85), Frank Darabont (62), Frank Skinner (64), Rosamund Pike (42), Patton Oswalt (52), James Cromwell (81), Alan Cumming (56), Bridget Fonda (57), Frank Miller (64), Sara Rue (42), Scott Glenn (82), Deep Roy (72), and Ellen DeGeneres (63).