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Dead Pool 16th February 2020

A handful of deaths, alas no points this week but plenty to depress you in the following newsletter. Let’s get on with it! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

 In Other News

Legendary Brazil forward Pele is reluctant to leave his house because he cannot walk unaided, his son has said. Pele, 79, has had problems with his hip for some time and now needs a frame to walk, with many of his recent public appearances in a wheelchair. “He is very sheepish, reclusive,” his son Edinho told us. His health has been a concern in recent years and he had prostate surgery in 2015 after he was admitted to hospital for the second time in six months. “Imagine, he’s the King, he was always such an imposing figure and today he can’t walk properly,” Edinho explained. “He’s embarrassed, he doesn’t want to go out, be seen, or do practically anything that involves leaving the house. “He’s pretty fragile. He had a hip replacement and didn’t have an adequate or ideal rehabilitation. So he has this problem with mobility and that has set off a kind of depression.” This June marks the 50th anniversary of Pele’s final World Cup title, won in Mexico with what many believe to be the greatest team of all time.

Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh announced that he has been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. The 69-year-old told listeners that he began to experience shortness of breath earlier this month. This ultimately led to his diagnosis, which was confirmed by two medical institutions. “I have to tell you something today that I wish I didn’t have to tell you,” Limbaugh told his listeners. “But it is what it is. And you know me, I’m the mayor of Realville.” Although I will have to miss some of my shows to undergo tests and treatment, “my intention is to come here every day I can. And to do this program as normally and competently … as I do each and every day.” Limbaugh is a longtime cigar smoker and smoking advocate. In e, he told a caller that Americans should thank smokers because of the money they add to the economy. He also denied that second-hand smoke caused illness, and that it took 50 years for first-hand smoke to cause cancer. Let’s see how his views help him with his recovery.  

As we’re all about to die of the coronavirus, I thought you all might like to know why. Like so many deadly outbreaks before it, the new coronavirus likely emerged from bats. Since the first patients were infected at a seafood and live animal market in the Chinese city Wuhan at the end of last year, the previously unknown strain has spread to at least 27 countries. Authorities have confirmed more than 43,000 cases, of which 42,655 are in mainland China. One death has been reported in Europe, but luckily we’re not part of the EU anymore, so our gammons are safe. The new coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, is far from the only outbreak with bats behind it. Coronaviruses are a class, with seven strains known to infect humans. One of which is severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars), which killed 774 people during its 2004 outbreak. Mers and Ebola also fall into the same class. But why are bat viruses are so deadly? It’s all down to flying. The bat is thought to have evolved to release high amounts of the protein to “mop up” inflammatory damage caused by flying. The nocturnal creatures may therefore be “primed” to defend themselves against viruses. Viruses may then evolve to reproduce quickly within the animal before a defence response is initiated. “When you have a higher immune response, you get these cells that are protected from infection, so the virus can actually ramp up its replication rate without causing damage to its host,” said study author Cara Brook. While bats can tolerate this, if the virus moves into a creature without the same immune response, it can be deadly. “Our immune system would generate widespread inflammation if attempting this same antiviral strategy,” said Brook.  While little is known about exactly where the virus came from or how long it takes to cause symptoms, Chinese authorities have confirmed it spreads via droplets expelled while sneezing or coughing. It is unknown whether the virus “floats” in the air or survives on hard surfaces. Infected patients develop flu-like symptoms, such as fever and breathlessness. In the most severe cases, victims succumb to pneumonia. 

On This Day

  • 1923 – Howard Carter unseals the burial chamber of Pharaoh Tutankhamun.
  • 1937 – Wallace H. Carothers receives a United States patent for nylon.
  • 1998 – China Airlines Flight 676 crashes into a road and residential area near Chiang Kai-shek International Airport in Taiwan, killing all 196 aboard and seven more on the ground.
  • 2006 – The last Mobile army surgical hospital (MASH) is decommissioned by the United States Army.

Deaths

  • 1992 – Angela Carter, English novelist, short story writer (b. 1940)
  • 2015 – Lesley Gore, American singer-songwriter (b. 1946)
  • 2016 – Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Egyptian politician and diplomat, 6th Secretary-General of the United Nations (b. 1922)

Last Meals

Westley Allan Dodd was an American serial killer and convicted sex offender. In 1989, he sexually assaulted and murdered three young boys in Vancouver, Washington. 

At the age of 13, Dodd began exposing himself to children in his neighbourhood. His father eventually told an Oregon newspaper that he was aware of the boy’s behaviour but largely ignored it, since he felt his son was otherwise “a well-behaved child who never had problems with drugs, drinking, or smoking.” By the time he entered high school, Dodd had progressed to molestation, beginning with his younger cousins, and then neighbourhood children he offered to babysit, as well as the children of a woman his father was dating. The ongoing pattern din not stop and each time he was caught he was given a slap on the wrist and he just carried on. 

On September 4, 1989, Dodd went to Vancouver’s David Douglas Park, with a fish fillet knife and shoelaces, and sought out young boys to kill. He lured two brothers, 11- and 10-year-old Cole and William Neer, to a secluded area, where he forced them to undress, tied them to a tree and performed sex acts on them both. When he was done, he stabbed them repeatedly with a knife and fled the scene. The boys were soon discovered in the park. Cole was dead at the scene, while William died en-route to the hospital. 

After the murders of the two brothers, Dodd started a scrapbook with newspaper clippings and other facts about the murders. On October 29, Dodd drove to Portland, Oregon and there he encountered four-year-old Lee Iseli and his nine-year-old brother Justin at a local park. The younger boy was playing alone on a slide, and Dodd succeeded in convincing the boy to come with him. Justin had gone home, so Dodd told Lee that he “would drive him back to his house”. He managed to bring Lee to his apartment in Vancouver apparently unnoticed, and he ordered the boy to undress. Dodd then tied Lee to his bed and molested him, taking photographs of the abuse. Dodd kept Lee overnight while he continued to molest him, all the while jotting down every detail in his diary. The next morning, he strangled Lee to death with a rope and hung his body in the closet, photographing it as a macabre “trophy”. He would later confess to police that he had not originally planned to kill the boy, but eventually decided that it was necessary to keep him from telling anyone. Dodd stuffed Lee’s nude body in trash bags and threw it in some bushes near Vancouver Lake. He burned Lee’s clothing in a trash barrel except for the boy’s underwear, which he kept as a souvenir of the crime. One day later, Lee’s body was discovered, which sparked a manhunt for the killer. 

On November 13, 1989, Dodd attempted to abduct 6-year-old James Kirk II from the restroom of the New Liberty Theatre in Camas, Washington, but the child began fighting and crying as Dodd was leaving the theatre through the lobby, carrying the boy in his arms. Despite Dodd’s attempts to calm the boy, theatre employees became suspicious. Once outside, Dodd released his victim before getting into his car and driving away.  The boyfriend of the boy’s mother, William “Ray” Graves, came to the theatre lobby and was told that the boy had nearly been abducted. Graves went outside the theatre in the direction where Dodd was last seen. Dodd’s car had broken down a short distance away from the theatre and he was attempting to start the motor. In order not to raise Dodd’s suspicion and to stall for time, Graves offered to help him. He then put Dodd into a headlock and brought him back to the theatre, where employees called the police. 

During the search of Dodd’s home, police discovered a homemade torture rack, along with newspaper clippings about his crimes, a briefcase containing Lee Iseli’s underwear, a photo album containing pictures of Lee Iseli, and assorted photographs of children in newspaper and store catalogue underwear advertisements. They also discovered Dodd’s diary, in which he wrote in detail about the murders. Dodd was charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of the Neer brothers and Lee Iseli, plus attempted kidnapping of another child. He initially pleaded not guilty to all charges, but later changed his plea to guilty.

Less than four years elapsed between the murders and Dodd’s execution. He refused to appeal his case or the capital sentence. He insisted that he was uncontrollable and would kill again, stating in one court brief: “I must be executed before I have an opportunity to escape or kill someone else. If I do escape, I promise you I will kill and rape again, and I will enjoy every minute of it.” He also said in some interviews that death would give him relief from guilt over the  murders. During his trial, he wrote a pamphlet on how parents could protect children from child molesters such as himself. Washington state law gave Dodd the choice of either lethal injection or hanging for his execution. He chose hanging, later stating in interviews that he preferred that method “because that’s the way Lee Iseli [his final victim] died”. Dodd’s execution was witnessed by 12 members of local and regional media, prison officials, and family members of the three victims. Dodd ordered broiled salmon and fried potatoes for his last meal. His last words, spoken from the second floor of the indoor gallows, were recorded by the media witnesses as:  I was once asked by somebody, I don’t remember who, if there was any way sex offenders could be stopped. I said, ‘No.’ I was wrong. I was wrong when I said there was no hope, no peace. There is hope. There is peace. I found both in the Lord, Jesus Christ. Look to the Lord, and you will find peace.

Dodd was executed by hanging at 12:05 a.m. on January 5, 1993 at Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla. He was pronounced dead by the prison doctor and his body transported to Seattle for autopsy. The witnesses said that the King County Medical Examiner, Donald Reay, found that Dodd had died quickly, within two to three minutes, though not from a broken neck, which is the usual cause of death from hanging. Reay stated that Dodd’s death had likely not been very painful.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Christopher Eccleston (55), LeVar Burton (62), Amanda Holden (48), John McEnroe (60), Jane Seymour (69), Simon Pegg (50), Andrew Robinson (78), Mena Suvari (41), Neal McDonough (54), Kim Novak (87), Christina Ricci (40), Josh Brolin (52), Michael Ironside (70), Arsenio Hall (64), Jennifer Aniston (51), Natalie Dormer (38), Damian Lewis (49), Taylor Lautner (28), Sheryl Crow (58), Laura Dern (53), Chloë Grace Moretz (23), Elizabeth Banks (46), Keeley Hawes (44), Robert Wagner (90), Philip Glenister (57), and Holly Willoughby (39).

Dead Pool 9th February 2020

A very busy points week with the long anticipated death of Kirk Douglas! 21 of us have scored some points! I’ll not list you all, but take a quick look at the league table and you’ll see most have now scored some points already, well done everyone, especially those of you who listed him as a Cert. 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

 In Other News

Shannen Doherty has been diagnosed with stage four breast cancer. The Charmed and 90210 star revealed the diagnosis on Good Morning America on Tuesday morning. “It’s going to come out in a matter of days or a week that I have stage four [cancer],” she told host Amy Robach. “My cancer came back and… that’s why I’m here.” Doherty kept the diagnosis private for a year. She said she chose to discuss it now because the condition will soon be made public in court documents. “I don’t think that I’ve processed it,” she added of the diagnosis. “It’s a bitter pill to swallow in a lot of ways.” Doherty was originally diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015 and announced that the illness was in remission in April 2017.      

Infamous Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff has asked a judge to grant him a “compassionate release” from his 150-year prison sentence, saying he has terminal kidney failure and barely 18-months to live. In 2009, the financier was sent to jail after pleading guilty to more than 10 federal charges relating to a Ponzi scheme involving hundreds of his clients. But lawyers for the New York-born financial adviser have filed court papers to say the 81-year-old has end-stage kidney disease and other “chronic, serious medical conditions”. including hypertension and cardiovascular disease. “There’s no cure for my type of disease,” Madoff told the Washington Post in a phone interview, expressing remorse for orchestrating the largest Ponzi scheme in history. After spending more than a decade behind bars, Madoff said his dying wish was to salvage his relationships with his grandchildren. He said; “I’ve served 11 years already and, quite frankly, I’ve suffered through it.” Madoff pleaded guilty in 2009 to 11 federal counts in a fraudulent investment scheme involving billions of dollars, admitting he swindled thousands of clients over decades. The rich and famous were among his victims, as well as people of lesser means who had invested with him unknowingly through feeder funds. The Bureau of Prisons denied Madoff’s request for release last December, according to court papers, saying it would “minimise the severity of his offence”. The agency lists Madoff’s release date as November 14th 2139.   

The ever attention seeking Katie Price was forced to cancel a recent gig after coming down with a mystery illness, (cough, hangover, cough) and it’s claimed the former glamour model is worried it’s something serious. She is said to be concerned that it’s coronavirus, a contagious condition that has killed 565 people worldwide. According to The Scum, the mum-of-five has been texting her friends to ask what the symptoms are as she fears she picked it up from either her New Year’s break to Thailand or a recent trip to New York. A source told the paper: “Katie’s been feeling so bad she’s convinced it’s more than the flu. Yesterday Katie recorded a video from her bed saying she was feeling ill, but not too ill to take a selfie video. She lay in bed with no makeup on and her hair down and laying unbrushed around her, like us normal people do. “I’ve been really ill and I’ve been in bed all night and I’m staying in bed all day,” Katie said. No change there then… 

On This Day

  • 1959 – The R-7 Semyorka, the first intercontinental ballistic missile, becomes operational at Plesetsk, USSR.
  • 1964 – The Beatles make their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, performing before a “record-busting” audience of 73 million viewers across the USA.
  • 1996 – The Provisional Irish Republican Army declares the end to its 18-month ceasefire and explodes a large bomb in London’s Canary Wharf, killing two people.

Deaths

Last Meals

Coy Wayne “Elvis” Wesbrook was an American mass murderer, convicted for the killing of 5 people in Channelview, Texas on November 13, 1997. Wesbrook fatally shot his ex-wife Gloria Jean Coons, her female roommate, and three men during a party at Coons’ home in an apparent fit of jealous rage. Wesbrook was sentenced to death in 1998, and was executed by lethal injection in 2016. The case was controversial due to questions about Wesbrook’s intelligence being low enough that a death sentence was improper. According to his testimony, Wesbrook went to visit his ex-wife, Gloria Jean Coons, at her home in Channelview, Texas, in the Greater Houston area. He was invited to a party at Coons’ apartment along with other friends Diana Ruth Money, and three other males. Wesbrook had gone there with hopes of rebuilding the relationship with Coons, but went into a rage when the party’s attendees began to mock him because Coons had cheated on him in the bedroom. At some point in the evening, Wesbrook noticed that his ex-wife and two of the men had slipped away, and when he went into the bedroom, he found Coons having sex with both of the men. While they were mocking him they were playing “keep away” with his keys, tossing them back and forth to each other, preventing him from leaving. He was able to get his keys back and he left. A very short time later he returned in his truck and pulled out his .30-06 hunting rifle and returned to the residence, where he then fatally shot his ex-wife, all three of the males, and Money in the residence. At about 2 a.m., a neighbour heard the gunfire, grabbed a cell phone, went next door, saw the corpses, and called 911. Wesbrook was arrested at the scene. In 1998, Wesbrook’s trial began, and due to his low IQ the defence asked the jury to show mercy for Wesbrook. However, the prosecution said that Wesbrook had been fully aware that what he was doing was wrong and that made him fully responsible for his actions. The prosecution immediately sought the death penalty. The jury found Wesbrook guilty and fully responsible for his actions and recommended the death sentence, and on September 2, 1998, Wesbrook was sentenced to death, being placed on death row the same day. Despite his low IQ and the disputed testimony of Dr. George Denkowski, Wesbrook was not granted another trial. On March 9, 2016, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals rejected a last-minute appeal that had been filed because of concerns over Wesbrook’s  possible mental impairment. For his last meal, Wesbrook ate baked chicken, mashed potatoes, country gravy, green beans, black-eyed peas, sliced bread and mandarin orange cake. He was given a choice of water, tea or punch to drink. Wesbrook was executed by lethal injection that evening, and was pronounced dead at 8:04 PM.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Joe Pesci (76), Michael B. Jordan (32), Rose Leslie (32), Tom Hiddleston (38), Ciarán Hinds (66), Mia Farrow (74), Jim Parrack (38), Mary Steenburgen (66), Nick Nolte (78), Ethan Phillips (64), Seth Green (45), John Grisham (64), Tina Majorino (35), Ashton Kutcher (42), James Spader (60), Deborah Ann Woll (35), Chris Rock (55), Eddie Izzard (58), Mike Farrell (81), Kevin Whately (69),  Axl Rose (58), Jennifer Jason Leigh (58), Michael Sheen (51), Charlotte Rampling (74), Christopher Guest (72), Gabrielle Anwar (50), Jim Jefferies (43), Alice Cooper (72), Isla Fisher (44), Warwick Davis (50), and Morgan Fairchild (70).

Dead Pool 2nd February 2020

Surprisingly we only have one person who listed Nicholas Parsons this year, at one point it seemed like he was on everyones list! However, points are points and Ron has made 54 of them! Well done that man! Shall we get on with it? 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Olivia Newton-John says she is winning her third battle with breast cancer, thanks to medicinal cannabis. The 71-year-old told how the herbal treatment has helped contain the stage four disease, which returned three years ago in her lower back. Olivia looked fit and healthy as she appeared on the red carpet with Grease co-star John Travolta, 65, at the G’day USA gala in Beverly Hills on Saturday. The actress and singer said: “My tumours are receding or they’re going away or they’re staying the same. On a stage four metastatic breast cancer that’s pretty amazing. I don’t see it as a battle. I am winning.” Olivia is pushing for the wider use of cannabis as a medicine. She added: “For me the proof is in the pudding and I’m the pudding. “If I hadn’t had the experience I’m having with cannabis I wouldn’t be able to talk about it.” The mum-of-one’s Cancer & Wellness Centre in her native Australia is launching trials of cannabis as a medicine. She has also lobbied the ­government there to approve its use. The cannabis she uses is grown by husband John Easterling at their Santa Barbara home in ­California. She claimed doctors were supportive of the treatment. Olivia added: “It’s not a drug. It’s a herb and a plant.”     

Comedy legend Jimmy Tarbuck has revealed he is having a cancer test the day after he turns 80 this week – but best pal Sir Tom Jones will help keep him laughing. The star started to fear he might have prostate cancer after suffering some of the telltale symptoms. And he credits rocker Rod Stewart – who has survived the disease – with giving him the courage to finally go and get tested. But it’s The Voice star Tom, 79, who will support him through his ordeal. Jimmy, whose birthday is on Wednesday, said: “The day after, I am going in for an operation and I will be getting myself right again. “They need to do a biopsy to find out if I have got prostate cancer. He added: “The thought of having prostate cancer is scary but I am determined to face it head on – and that’s because of learning that Rod Stewart has gone through it too.” Jimmy saw the rocker at a charity event in November when Rod first publicly announced he had been diagnosed with the disease. At the time Jimmy was experiencing symptoms, including blood in his urine and the frequent need to urinate. Of this week’s test. He said: “It’s best to know now because I want to grab another few years. My health has been fine since I had the stents put in and, please God, I’m still here. “I will make a deal with Him. I want a few more years and a bit of fun. And then I will say, ‘Thanks very much you have given me a great life.’  

Madonna has cancelled two more shows in London, but said she was defying the orders of doctors who have told her she should be playing even fewer nights. The star, 61, said she has “multiple injuries”, meaning she has to do six hours’ of rehab every day she performs. She is currently doing a residency at the London Palladium, but has called off the shows on 4th and 11th February. That means she will not have three gigs in a row – but doctors told her two consecutive nights were still too much. She had previously cancelled her first London show on Monday after also calling off performances in Portugal. In a statement on Instagram on Friday, she wrote: “As you all know I have multiple injuries and have had to cancel shows to give me time to recover. “So as not to surprise you I want to let you know ahead of time that I will be cancelling 2 shows – on Feb 4th and Feb 11th at the Palladium in London because doing 3 shows in a row is too much on my body and in fact my doctors insist I take a day off after every show but I believe can manage if I do 2 shows then I rest! “It’s a miracle I have gotten this far but a lot has to do with the fact that I do 6 hours of rehab every day. 3 hours before show and 3 after with multiple therapies. “I have also switched to flat shoes and modified difficult parts of the show. This has helped enormously but I still need to be careful and of course rest is the best medicine. “Of course I never want to cancel any show and I’m determined that I will make it to the end if I pace myself. God Willing.” On Wednesday, she took to the Palladium stage wearing knee supports, but still performed high kicks, yoga poses and even the splits during a two-and-a-half-hour show.

On This Day

  • 1709 – Alexander Selkirk is rescued after being shipwrecked on a desert island, inspiring Daniel Defoe‘s adventure book Robinson Crusoe.
  • 1887 – In Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania the first Groundhog Day is observed.
  • 1887 – In Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania the first Groundhog Day is observed.
  • 1901 – Funeral of Queen Victoria.
  • 1959 – Nine experienced ski hikers in the northern Ural Mountains in the Soviet Union die under mysterious circumstances.

Deaths

Last Meals

Donnie Cleveland Lance was executed by lethal injection at 7pm on Wednesday in Georgia, USA, having been convicted of the murders of Sabrina ‘Joy’ Lance and Dwight ‘Butch’ Wood Jr in November 1997. Having been convicted in 1999, the murderer went  on to exhaust his standard appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear his case last year. The bodies of Lance’s victims were found at Butch’s home in Jackson on November 9, 1997 – with the murders estimated to have taken place between midnight and 5am, a court summary details. Butch had been shot at least twice with a shotgun and Joy had been beaten to death by repeated blows to her face, while the front door had imprints matching Lance’s size 7-and-a-half work boots. A police officer saw Lance’s car leave the scene near midnight and Joy’s dad testified he told the convicted man she was not home when he called hoping to speak to her at 11.55pm. Associate Joe Moore assisted Lance in disposing of shotgun shells and the killer told him the pair were dead, adding Butch’s “daddy could buy him out of a bunch of places, but he can’t buy him out of Hell”.

Lance had a long history of abuse against his ex-wife, both during and after they were married, including kidnapping, beatings with his fist, a belt, and a handgun, strangulation, and electrocution or the threat of electrocution. He had also threatened to burn her with flammable liquid and kill her with a handgun and a chainsaw, as well firing a handgun at or near her, and other forms of physical abuse. Several witnesses also testified that Lance had repeatedly threatened to kill Joy if she tried to divorce him or became involved with Butch, and had threatened to kill Butch’s wife and other people related to his ex. So, the police were a bit a slow on the uptake here and maybe could have prevented the double murder.

Lance requested a last meal of two chilli steak burgers, French fries, onion rings, mustard, ketchup, and a soda. Lance said nothing when he was given a chance to make a final statement and declined to have a chaplain say a prayer. Strapped to a gurney, he lay mostly still but wiggled his feet. The warden left the execution chamber at 8:54 p.m. Records from previous executions show that the lethal drug generally begins flowing within a minute or two of the warden’s exit. Lance took about a dozen deep breaths and then became completely still about three minutes after the warden left and was pronounced dead at 9:05 p.m. thus becoming the first man to be executed in Georgia in 2020.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Gemma Arterton (33), Brent Spiner (70), Shakira (42), David Jason (79), Duane ‘Dog’ Chapman (66), Sherilyn Fenn (54), Harry Styles (25), Lisa Marie Presley (51), Dexter Fletcher (53), Minnie Driver (49), Jonathan Banks (72), Justin Timberlake (38), Christian Bale (46), Olivia Colman (46), Gene Hackman (90), Vanessa Redgrave (83), Phil Collins (69), Tom Selleck (75), Heather Graham (50), Katharine Ross (80), Marc Singer (72), Oprah Winfrey (66), Adam Lambert (38), Tim Healy (68), Ariel Winter (22), Will Poulter (27), Elijah Wood (39), Tom Hopper (35), Alan Alda (84), Frank Darabont (61), Frank Skinner (63), Rosamund Pike (41), Alan Cumming (55), Patton Oswalt (51), James Cromwell (80), and Bridget Fonda (56).

Dead Pool 26th January 2020

Welcome Poolers, to a slightly tardy edition this week, my apologies, I was away for the weekend at a school reunion. However, as we all know from the emails last week, there are points to be awarded. With the tragic demise of Terry Jones, I can fork out 73 points to Paul C, Abi FB, & Lee U, and a whopping 173 points to Neil G for listing him as his Cert. So! The game is certainly afoot! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

 In Other News

Nashville singer-songwriter David Olney has died during a performance on stage. The Americana artist, whose music was recorded by Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt, Steve Young and others, died of an apparent heart attack while performing at the 30A Songwriters Festival in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. According to fellow singer-songwriter Scott Miller, who was performing with Olney, the 71-year-old stopped in the middle of a song, said “I’m sorry”, and “put his chin to his chest”. “He never dropped his guitar or fell [off] his stool,” Miller wrote on Facebook. “It was as easy and gentle as he was.” Amy Rigby, who was also on stage with Olney at the time, wrote a separate Facebook post with her own moving account of what happened. “He was very still, sitting upright with his guitar on, wearing the coolest hat and a beautiful rust suede jacket… I just want the picture to be as graceful and dignified as it was, because it at first looked like he was just taking a moment,” she wrote. Olney became a key member of Nashville’s music scene after moving from his native Rhode Island in 1973. Regarded as an “Americana pioneer”, he produced more than 20 albums, including 2018’s This Side or the Other.  

Serial sock sex pest James Arthur has had to cancel another gig as his health has deteriorated due to an unknown illness. The 31-year-old singer is currently on his world tour, and has had to pull out of his Zurich gig tonight after dropping his Barcelona show on Wednesday. Middlesbrough-born James admitted he was “gutted” on Wednesday after doctors urgently advised him to rest, but his health has not improved since. The cause of James’ illness is unknown, but he told followers on social media “I’ve become really unwell”. An Instagram post on the singer’s account stated: “Unfortunately James’ health has not improved in the past couple of days and therefore we are sad to say that he will not be able to perform in Zurich this evening.” The post continued: “James is very sorry for any disappointment this may cause and really hopes to get to see you all again soon.” The star, who became famous from his X Factor appearance in 2012, is set to perform in Vienna on Monday and Czechia on Tuesday if his illness gets better or if it gets worse, our ears will be saved and he might die.  

Formula One legend Michael Schumacher is likely “very altered and deteriorated” six years on from suffering serious head injuries after a skiing accident in 2013 and will be a “very different person from who we remember”, according to a leading neurosurgeon. Schumacher, 51, has not been seen in public since suffering a traumatic brain injury while skiing off-piste in the French Alps. He was placed in a medically induced coma for six months until June 2014 and has since been treated privately at his home in Switzerland. Little is known about his recovery. However, leading surgeon Nicola Acciari, who is based in Bologna, has told an Italian newspaper that the seven-time Formula One world champion will now be a completely different man and is unlikely to truly recover from his injuries. “We must imagine a person very different from the one we remember on the track, with a very altered and deteriorated organic, muscular and skeletal structure,” she told Contro Copertina. “All as a result of the brain trauma he suffered.”  The neurosurgeon’s warning comes after Jean Todt, his former manager at Ferrari, last year assured fans that Schumacher was “still fighting”. “I’m always careful with such statements, but it’s true. Michael is in the best hands and is well looked after in his house. He does not give up and keeps fighting. His family is fighting just as much and of course our friendship cannot be the same as it once was just because there’s no longer the same communication as before.”    

On This Day

  • 1905 – The world’s largest diamond ever, the Cullinan weighing 3,106.75 carats, is found at the Premier Mine near Pretoria in South Africa.
  • 1926 – The first demonstration of the television by John Logie Baird.
  • 1972 – JAT Fight 367 is destroyed by a terrorist bomb, killing 27 of the 28 people on board the DC-9. Flight attendant Vesna Vulović survives with critical injuries.
  • 1998 – On American television, U.S. President Bill Clinton denies having had “sexual relations” with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

Deaths

Last Meals? No, Something Else… 

I thought we’d try something a little different this week, since we have Vesna Vulović mentioned above. As you saw, she’s quite a survivor, she holds the Guinness world record for surviving the highest fall without a parachute: 10,160m (33,330ft; 6.31mi)!!! 

Vulović was born in Belgrade on 3rd January 1950. Her father was a businessman and her mother was a fitness instructor. Driven by her love of the Beatles, Vulović travelled to the United Kingdom after completing her first year of university, hoping to improve her English-language skills. “I initially stayed with my parents’ friends in Newbury,” she recalled, “but wanted to move to London. It was there that I met up with a friend who suggested we go to Stockholm. When I told my parents I was living in the Swedish capital, they thought of the drugs and the sex and told me to come home at once.” Upon returning to Belgrade, Vulović decided to become a flight attendant after seeing one of her friends in a flight attendant’s uniform. “She looked so nice and had just been to London for the day,” Vulović recalled. “I thought, ‘Why shouldn’t I be an air hostess? I could go to London once a month’.” She joined JAT, Yugoslavia’s national flag carrier and largest airline, in 1971.

The fateful Flight 367 departed from Stockholm Arlanda Airport at 1:30p.m. on 26th January. The aircraft, a McDonnell Douglas DC-9, landed at Copenhagen Airport at 2:30p.m., whereupon Vulović and her colleagues boarded the plane. “As it was late, we were in the terminal and saw it park,” Vulović said. “I saw all the passengers and crew deplane. One man seemed terribly annoyed. It was not only me that noticed him either. Other crew members saw him, as did the station manager in Copenhagen. I think it was the man who put the bomb in the baggage. I think he had checked in a bag in Stockholm, got off in Copenhagen and never re-boarded the flight.”

Flight 367 departed from Copenhagen Airport at 3:15p.m. At 4:01p.m., an explosion tore through the DC-9’s baggage compartment. The explosion caused the aircraft to break apart over the Czechoslovak village of Srbská Kamenice.  Vulović was the only survivor of the 28 passengers and crew.  

She was discovered by villager Bruno Honke, who heard her screaming amid the wreckage. Her turquoise uniform was covered in blood and her 3-inch stiletto heels had been torn off by the force of the impact. Honke had been a medic during World War II and was able to keep her alive until rescuers arrived. Air safety investigators attributed Vulović’s survival to her being trapped by a food cart in the DC-9’s fuselage as it broke away from the rest of the aircraft and plummeted towards the ground. When the cabin depressurised, the passengers and other flight crew were blown out of the aircraft and fell to their deaths. Investigators believed that the fuselage, with Vulović pinned inside, landed at an angle in a heavily wooded and snow-covered mountainside, which cushioned the impact. Vulović’s physicians concluded that her history of low blood pressure caused her to pass out quickly after the cabin depressurised and kept her heart from bursting on impact. Vulović said that she was aware of her low blood pressure before applying to become a flight attendant and knew that it would result in her failing her medical examination, but she drank an excessive amount of coffee beforehand and was accepted. Following the crash, Vulović spent days in a coma, having fractured her skull which then haemorrhaged. She also suffered two broken legs and three broken vertebrae, one of which was crushed completely. Her pelvis was fractured and several ribs broken. Her injuries resulted in her being temporarily paralysed below the waist. She had total amnesia from the hour preceding her fall until one month afterwards. Vulović’s parents told her that she first learned of the crash about two weeks after it occurred. She fainted upon being shown a newspaper headline by her doctor and then had to be tranquillised. The last thing that Vulović could remember from before the crash was greeting passengers as they boarded. The next thing she remembered was seeing her parents in her hospital room about one month later. Within ten months of her fall, Vulović had regained the ability to walk, but limped for the rest of her life, her spine permanently twisted. In total, she spent 16 months recuperating. “Nobody ever expected me to live this long,” she recounted in 2008. Vulović attributed her recovery to her “Serbian stubbornness” and “a childhood diet that included chocolate, spinach, and fish oil”. Sadly she died in anonymity and rather poor in 2016.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Scott Glenn (80), Ellen DeGeneres (61), Eddie Van Halen (64), Kristen Schaal (41), Nastassja Kinski (58), Ade Edmondson (62), Neil Diamond (78), Gil Gerard (76), Linda Blair (61), Piper Laurie (88), Rainn Wilson (54), David Lynch (74), Tom Baker (86), Bill Maher (64), Katey Sagal (66), Dolly Parton (74), Tippi Hedren (90), and Michael Crawford (78).

Dead Pool 19th January 2020

As some of you who pay  attention to the emails may  have seen, I missed a death last  week!!! Yup, great start to the year from me! Just to officially state, Chrissy did get the first death of the year for Qaboos bin Said Al Said, 79, Omani royal, Sultan (since 1970) who died of colon cancer. And a massive 221 points too as she had him listed as her Cert and an extra 50 points for getting the first death of the year!!

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Let’s begin the news section with an award ceremony! Yes, for the first time in Dead Pool history I’ve managed to motivate myself enough to actually go out and get a trophy made. This of course would not have been possible without the kind donations that many of you have provided. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get a similar trophy made each year from now on, so there is actually something to play for!! 

Without further ado, let’s congratulate Paul C on his amazing win! He’s officially The Angel of Death 2019!!! Paul has been a  stalwart of the Pool for many years and has consistently been at the top end of the league table, so it’s only fitting he be the first recipient of a Dead Pool Trophy. I know he’s very pleased with his trophy and I would like to thank him and Liz C for providing a photo for us. 

Now you know the amazingness that you are playing for, I’ll have to reiterate that you are not allowed to skew the results of the Dead Pool by killing the people on your list. Luckily there’s no provision here for a blubbering speech, so we’ll just assume Paul would like to thank his parents, his wife and all the dead people, whilst crying and thanking the audience. Well done Paul, Angel of Death 2019!  

The world’s shortest man has died at the age of 27. Khagendra Thapa Magar, from Nepal, measured 67.08cm (2ft 2.41in) and weighed just 6kg and was recognised as the world’s shortest man who could walk by Guinness World Records. Magar had been suffering from heart problems, asthma and pneumonia. He was admitted to hospital in Nepal on Thursday and died on Friday. Sadly, not famous enough to be listed, but he’s worthy of a small footnote. The Guinness World Records recognises two categories for people of short stature: mobile and non-mobile. Magar’s height made him the shortest mobile man on the planet, at 7cm taller than Philipino Junrey Balawing, who measures 59.93cm (1ft 11.5in) and who is unable to walk or stand unaided due to the medical condition osteogenesis imperfecta. Magar was born in the Baglung district of Nepal on 14th October 1992, and was confirmed to be the shortest male teenager in early 2010. He was officially measured at Fewa City Hospital on his 18th birthday in 2010, when he became the world’s shortest mobile man. His father remembered: “He was so tiny when he was born that he could fit in the palm of your hand, and it was very hard to bathe him because he was so small.” As Magar became famous he was appointed as a Nepalese goodwill ambassador for tourism. The record for world’s shortest living mobile man has reverted back to Edward Hernandez, who measures 70.21cm (2ft 3.46in).  

The husband of TV’s Dame Barbara Windsor today reveals his heartache at her decline – and the treasured moments which keep them going. Devoted Scott Mitchell tells the us that the actress’s Alzheimer’s has worsened to the point where she doesn’t recognise her own home. Scott says Barbara, 82, forgets who he is, regularly asks for her long-departed mum Rose and at times thinks she is living in her parents’ house. But the Carry On and EastEnders legend retains a “wonderful” humour, they still share a laugh – and watching her old shows stirs happy memories. Scott, 56, says: “I’ve definitely seen a progression in the last year. Barbara’s symptoms have deepened, especially where her confusion is concerned. “Constantly, she does not realise where we are, even in the house. She will ask me, ‘When are we going home?’ “Sometimes she will ask me about people who have already passed away, as if they are still here. That is something she does regularly about her own parents. It is a very difficult one. “Barbara will often say to me, ‘Do you know how to get in touch with my mum? I’d like to have a chat with her. I haven’t seen her for ages, I need to see her.’ “It’s heartbreaking. They are very difficult situations to be faced with. Short-term memory is the hardest, so Barbara won’t remember if she had dinner 20 minutes ago. If I say someone is popping in, she will forget that instantly. “The things she remembers are more long-term memories, so things about her childhood and early career.” 

On This Day

  • 1764 – Bolle Willum Luxdorph records in his diary that a mail bomb, possibly the world’s first, has severely injured the Danish Colonel Poulsen, residing at Børglum Abbey.
  • 1883 – The first electric lighting system employing overhead wires, built by Thomas Edison, begins service at Roselle, New Jersey.
  • 1983 – The Apple Lisa, the first commercial personal computer from Apple Inc. to have a graphical user interface and a computer mouse, is announced.
  • 1986 – The first IBM PC computer virus is released into the wild. A boot sector virus dubbed (c)Brain, it was created by the Farooq Alvi Brothers in Lahore, Pakistan, reportedly to deter unauthorised copying of the software they had written.

Deaths

  • 2000 – Hedy Lamarr, Austrian-American actress, singer, and mathematician (b. 1913)
  • 2006 – Wilson Pickett, American singer-songwriter (b. 1941)
  • 2017 – Miguel Ferrer, American actor (b. 1955)

Last Meals

A Texas inmate with a history of violence against women was executed on Wednesday evening for fatally shooting his wife, who had feared she would never get out of her marriage alive. John Gardner, 64, received a lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville for the January 2005 slaying of Tammy Gardner. Prosecutors said the couple was getting divorced when Gardner broke into his wife’s North Texas home and shot her in the head as she was sitting in bed. She died two days later at a hospital. Asked by the warden if he had a final statement, Gardner, strapped to the death chamber gurney, turned his head and apologised several times to his wife’s son, daughter and mother, who watched through a window a few feet away. ‘I would like to say sorry for your grief,’ he said. ‘I hope what I’m doing today will give you peace, joy, closure, whatever it takes to forgive. I am sorry. I know you cannot forgive me, but I hope one day you will.’ After telling several friends watching through an adjacent window that he loved them, he apologised again, adding that he didn’t want to talk a lot and would ask the warden to go forward with his punishment because ‘I want to see the Lord Jesus so bad.’  

Shortly after the lethal dose of the powerful sedative pentobarbital began, Gardner took three deep breaths and then began snoring. Within seconds, all movement stopped. He was pronounced dead 16 minutes later. Texas has abolished the practice of allowing death row inmates a final meal request prior to execution, and Gardner would have eaten whatever was being served to the inmate population as his last meal. Gardner became the first inmate put to death this year in the U.S. Seven other executions are scheduled in the next few months in Texas, the nations busiest capital punishment state. Last year, 22 inmates were executed in the U.S., with nine inmates being put to death in Texas, the most of any state. Sadly for Laura, who listed Gardner, he hasn’t got his own Wiki page! Although she correctly guessed his timely death, she’ll not score any points. This is the risk of listing Death Row inmates, most of the time they will not have their own listing outside of the crime they have committed. 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Katey Sagal (65), Dolly Parton (73), Rob Delaney (42), Tippi Hedren (89), Michael Crawford (77), Kevin Costner (64), Dave Bautista (50), Jason Segel (39), Mark Rylance (59), Jane Horrocks (55), Samantha Mumba (36), Jim Carrey (57), Zooey Deschanel (39), Kelly Marie Tran (30), James Earl Jones (88), Betty White (97), James May (56), Kate Moss (45), James Nesbitt (55), Claudia Winkleman (48), DJ Jazzy Jeff (55), Jason Bateman (51), Carl Weathers (72), Kevin Durand (46), Mark Addy (56), Faye Dunaway (79), Dave Grohl (51), Ruth Wilson (38), Orlando Bloom (43), Liam Hemsworth (30), Michael Peña (44), Bill Bailey (55), and William B. Davis (82).