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Dead Pool 1st March 2020

Somewhat surprisingly, we’re not dishing out any points this week. Even though the oldest man on the planet has died and the last film star of the silent era also passed away. I’m expecting the following weeks to be busy with hordes of stars dying of Coronavirus, any bets on Jon Snow? 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

In what can only be described as an amazing case of Darwinism in action, three people have been killed after dry ice was poured into a swimming pool during a birthday party in Moscow. The victims had been celebrating the 29th birthday of Instagram influencer Yekaterina Didenko at a pool complex in the Russian capital. About 25kg of dry ice was tipped into the pool with the intention of creating a “visual effect” to impress guests. But people inside the pool reportedly instantly began to choke and lose consciousness. Several people were injured during the stunt, including Ms Didenko’s husband, 32-year-old Valentin Didenko, who is reportedly among the dead. The mother-of-two had earlier posted a video message telling her one million followers he had been rushed to intensive care. Dry ice, which is frozen carbon dioxide, produces a heavy vapour when put into water. The cause of the deaths is not yet known, but the vapour can cause an elevated level of carbon dioxide in blood when released in an inadequately ventilated space.     

Britain’s oldest man is now the oldest man in the world following the death of the previous record holder in Japan – but it’s not an achievement he seems too enamoured with. Born on 29th March 1908, Bob Wighton has been the oldest man in the UK since last summer and took the global title after Chitetsu Watanabe died aged 112 on Sunday – days after receiving a Guinness World Record certificate. Mr Weighton, who turns 112 next month, can now expect to receive a certificate of his own, although he says he takes no satisfaction from the milestone. “Well, I don’t really feel satisfied because it means someone else has died,” said the former teacher and engineer. Mr Weighton, who still lives in his own flat in Alton, Hampshire, said living to such an age was “not something I ever intended, wanted or worked for – it’s just one of those facts of life”. “It’s good genes I guess – taking things as they come instead of worrying about them for months”. Upon celebrating his 111th birthday last year, Mr Weighton put his long life down to “avoiding dying”. He said: “I have had the usual scares, flu, influenza, malaria, two or three operations; I ought to be dead but I am a survivor, if you like.”    

Prison bosses are reportedly worried about how to handle Harvey Weinstein while he is in jail, fearing he may commit suicide, or as it’s now called, doing an Epstein. Weinstein was convicted of rape and sexual assault on Monday and officials at New York prisons are said to be concerned another high-profile inmate could take his own life. Billionaire Epstein hanged himself last August in his cell at Metropolitan Correctional Centre in Manhattan while awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges. Now it is feared Weinstein may have to be kept in a private section of Rikers Island’s North Infirmary Command, which is for high-risk inmates, for his own safety. However, according to his attorney, Weinstein is as happy as can be — despite the looming possibility of nearly 30 years in prison. While Weinstein’s hospitalised at the moment due to chest pains, his attorney also doesn’t think his client will need extra protection from other inmates. Nothing like a bit of optimism. 

On This Day

  • 1692 – Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne and Tituba are brought before local magistrates in Salem Village, Massachusetts, beginning what would become known as the Salem witch trials.
  • 1953 – Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin suffers a stroke and collapses; he dies four days later.
  • 1983 – First collection of twelve Swatch models was introduced in Zürich, Switzerland.

Deaths

Last Week’s Birthdays

John Turturro (62), Rae Dawn Chong (58), Mercedes Ruehl (71), Kate Mara (36), Adam Baldwin (57), Richard Coyle(47), Timothy Spall (62), Chase Masterson (56), Bill Duke (76), Michael Bolton (66), Téa Leoni (54), Jameela Jamil (34), Sean Astin (49), Lee Evans (56), Daniel Kaluuya (31), Edward James Olmos (73), and Dennis Waterman (72).

Dead Pool 23rd February 2020

I’m not going to lie to you, this one is going to take a little while to read; I blame Nickie for sending too many stories… Luckily none of you chose Britain’s Oldest Living Person as she died last year, so any points you would have scored would have been nullified. 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

 In Other News

A daredevil pilot who believed the Earth was flat has been killed after his homemade rocket crashed shortly after take-off in California. “Mad” Mike Hughes, who hoped to prove the Earth was flat by going into space, died on Saturday near Barstow, California, after attempting to launch his steam-powered rocket for a new television series called Homemade Astronauts on the US Science Channel. In a statement, the Science Channel said: “Our thoughts & prayers go out to his family & friends during this difficult time. It was always his dream to do this launch & Science Channel was there to chronicle his journey.” A video of the launch, posted by a witness on Twitter, shows a parachute trailing behind the rocket immediately after take-off. The rocket is then depicted hurtling down to earth before crashing into the desert. With the help of his partner Waldo Stakes, Hughes wanted to reach 5,000 feet (1524m) in his rocket, according to space.com. Obviously nobody told him that commercial flights fly at 35,000 feet…  

Dame Julie Walters has revealed that she was diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer 18 months ago. Walters said she had two primary tumours in her large intestine, and was so shocked when she was diagnosed that she thought doctors “must have made a mistake”. She was filming her new movie The Secret Garden when she was diagnosed. “I was still thinking, ‘That’s ridiculous, he must have made a mistake,’” she said. “I couldn’t believe it.” Walters described the reaction of her husband, Grant Roffey. “I’ll never forget his face,” she said. “Tears came into his eyes.” The actor said that while she had always been optimistic that she would recover, she worried about not coming round from anaesthetic after surgery. She said that she had “30cm taken out of my colon” in hospital. Walters had chemotherapy, which she said was “fine” and had not caused hair loss. She added: “I’ve just had a scan, and I know that I’m clear.”  

Larry Tesler, the mind behind cut, copy and paste has died aged 74. Tesler played a key role in the development of a range of Apple products, serving as VP of AppleNet and Apple’s Advanced Technology Group. Prior to this the computer scientist had a pioneering career in technology. After studying the subject at Stanford University he went on to work for the legendary R&D facility, Xerox PARC. However, Tesler’s crowning achievement was the invention of cut, copy and paste, a function that is now taken for granted in modern computers. Tesler is fondly regarded as an encapsulation of hippie and high-tech culture that helped create Apple as a company.  

Liverpool comedian, Jimmy Tarbuck, has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The veteran comedian, 80, said that he is going to “try and beat it”. He said men can be too “shy” to get tested as he urged viewers: “All men out there watching, and all wives, get your husbands to go for the tests. I think after 50, just have a test, let them have a look at you. “You will be relieved and be with your families for extra years.” He added: “I feel great. I’m on the telly and I’m having a good time. Tarbuck said Sir Tom Jones has been his “mentor”, and had advised him to see a doctor when he told him about his symptoms. “Tom told me what was going to happen, all the tests,” Tarbuck said. He added: “Boys, go. It is embarrassing. The fella said to me ‘We’re going to give you the thumbs up’. I said ‘I hope not’. He roared laughing.” Tarbuck, who said the cancer has not spread, added: “I’m having injections and taking tablets and then I take a yearly cycle.”   

The oldest person in Britain has died at the age of 111, it was announced last Wednesday. Hilda Clulow passed away peacefully on Christmas Eve with her family and friends by her side at the care home where she was staying in Redditch, Worcestershire. She was born on March 15, 1908, when a loaf of bread cost just 1p and London hosted its first Olympic Games. Hilda lived through 27 prime ministers, five monarchs, and survived both world wars. The retired dress worker celebrated her 111th birthday with a 1940s-themed party last March. Speaking of her longevity on her previous birthday, Hilda said: “When you get to my age, it’s just a number isn’t it? “I’ve had a lovely day and seen lots of old photos, my memory isn’t quite what it was, but I don’t do too bad! The oldest person in the UK now is believed to be 111-year-old Bob Weighton who was born in Hull on March 29, 1908.

On This Day

  • 1455 – Traditional date for the publication of the Gutenberg Bible, the first Western book printed with movable type.
  • 1739 – At York Castle, the outlaw Dick Turpin is identified by his former schoolteacher. Turpin had been using the name Richard Palmer.
  • 1927 – German theoretical physicist Werner Heisenberg writes a letter to fellow physicist Wolfgang Pauli, in which he describes his uncertainty principle for the first time.

Deaths

Last Meals 

The final words of a death row inmate who was executed for stabbing a child rapist to death in prison have been revealed. Nicholas Todd Sutton was given a death sentence after being convicted of murdering fellow inmate Carl Estep in 1985. The 58-year-old had eaten his last meal– fried pork chops, mashed potatoes with gravy, biscuits and peach pie with vanilla ice cream, saying in his last words that he hopes he does better in his next time.

Sutton – who choose to die by electric chair rather than lethal injection – also paid tribute to his faith in God. Supporters had been attempting to overturn his death sentence, arguing he was a changed man.  

He was originally locked up for killing his grandma, and later confessed to two more murders before stabbing Estep to death while in jail. In a statement, Sutton said: “I have made a lot of friends along the way and a lot of people have enriched my life. “They have reached out to me and pulled me up and I am grateful for that. “I have had the privilege of being married to the finest woman, who is a great servant to God. “Without her, I would not have made the progress that I have made. I hope I do a much better job in the next life than I did in this one. “If I could leave one thing with all of you, it is, don’t ever give up on the ability of Jesus Christ to fix someone or a problem. “He can fix anything. Don’t ever underestimate His ability. He has made my life meaningful and fruitful through my relationships with family and friends. “So, even in my death, I am  coming out a winner. God has provided it all to me.” 

Sutton is the fourth inmate the US to executed in 2020, and the first in Tennessee. He was in prison when he killed child rapist Estep back in 1985 and was sentenced to death in 1986 – serving 34 years on death row. During a guard shift change, Sutton and his accomplice Thomas Street entered Estep’s cell and stabbed him 38 times in the chest and neck with homemade knives. Inmates said Estep was a drug dealer behind bars and had sold the men “bad merchandise”. It is claimed the paedophile refused to refund their money, so the men stole his watch. But then he threatened to kill Sutton, leading to the murder in which four inmates saw the men enter his cell and heard screams. 

Sutton killed his grandmother Dorothy by knocking out and throwing her into a river in Tennessee’s Hamblen County. He was convicted of murder and then confessed to beating to death his high school friend John Large, 19, and fatally shooting Charles Almon, 46. Such a nice man! 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Emily Blunt (36), Dakota Fanning (25), Josh Gad (38), Kelly Macdonald (43), Aziz Ansari (36), Jeri Ryan (51), Drew Barrymore (44), Thomas Jane (50), Kyle MacLachlan (60), Julie Walters (69), Nigel Planer (66), Sophie Turner (23), Ellen Page (32), Tuppence Middleton (32), Kelsey Grammer (64), Tyne Daly (73), Anthony Daniels (73), Charlotte Church (33), Anthony Head (66), Brenda Blethyn (74), Sidney Poitier (93), Rihanna (32), Cindy Crawford (54), Trevor Noah (36), Millie Bobby Brown (16), Ophelia Lovibond (34), Benicio Del Toro (53), Jeff Daniels (65), Ray Winstone (63), Seal (57), John Travolta (66), Molly Ringwald (52), Matt Dillon (56), Cybill Shepherd (70), Greta Scacchi (60), Joseph Gordon-Levitt (39), Rene Russo (66), Lou Diamond Phillips (58), Bonnie Wright (29), Dominic Purcell (50), Rory Kinnear (44), Paris Hilton (39), Michael Jordan (57), Patricia Routledge (91), Ed Sheeran (29), Brenda Fricker (75), and Barry Humphries (86).

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).