Tuesday, August 30, 2016


2016 will go down in history as the year we've lost too many great celebrities.

Seriously, it's only the end of August and we've mourned David Bowie, Prince, Muhammad Ali, Patty Duke, and now Gene Wilder.

David Bowie's death affected me, since I loved his music in the 1980s, especially his dues with Bing Crosby (The Little Drummer Boy); Queen (Under Pressure); and Mick Jaggar (Dancing in the Streets).  While I never saw Labrynth, in which he played Jareth the Goblin King, my daughter loves that movie.

I fell in love with Prince when Little Red Corvette and Purple Rain were released.  At college, my first RA (Jenny) loved him so much, she dyed her hair purple for his concerts.

Muhammad Ali:  I was saddened when he was diagnosed with Parkinsons, and was thrilled when he lit the torch at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta.

Patty Duke, I only knew from watching TV movies and trivia questions.

But Gene Wilder.....

I first 'met' him in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, then as 'Young Frankenstein', which, I admit, gave me nightmares the first time I saw it.  Now it's one of my favorite movies.

When I was 10, Dad took me to see Silver Streak at least twice, and I loved his scenes with Richard Pryor, esp the one where he's trying to 'act black'.

In high school, I suffered through Stir Crazy twice, during finals week.

I loved his devotion to Gilda Radner, whom I'd enjoyed on Saturday Night Live.

I'm not looking forward to losing any more of my favorites, so will the rest of my childhood celebrities please live healthy lives?  John Denver died too soon, as did Michael Jackson.

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