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Obituaries

Caroll Spinney, puppeteer who gave life to Big Bird of ‘Sesame Street,’ dies at 85

Caroll Spinney, the puppeteer who gave life to Big Bird, the towering, yellow avian of TV’s “Sesame Street” who accompanied generations of youngsters in the arduous, yet wondrous, work of growing up, died Sunday at his home in Connecticut. An Air Force veteran, he was 85.


George J. Laurer dies; WWII veteran was a creator of the universal bar code system

George Joseph Laurer, who revolutionized check-out lines across the world by creating the universal bar code, died earlier this month at his home in Wendell. He was 94.


Irving Burgie, songwriter of calypso hit ‘Day-O,’ dies at 95

Composer Irving Burgie, who helped popularize Caribbean music and co-wrote the enduring Harry Belafonte hit “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song),” has died at the age of 95.


Obituary

Decorated Ohio WWII veteran and paratrooper Don Jakeway dies

World War II Army Staff Sgt. Jakeway dropped behind enemy lines just prior to the Normandy invasion on June 6, 1944. Jakeway, one of Central Ohio's most decorated veterans, has died at the age of 96.


Retired Adm. James L. Holloway III, former chief of naval operations and ‘true Navy legend,’ dies at age 97

Trained as an aviator, Holloway holds the distinction of serving as a four-star admiral at the same time his father held the same rank — the only father and son in the history of the Navy to do so.


Ex-German sailor who joined US Army and served in Korea and Vietnam dies at 91

Kurt Dressler fought under Adolf Hitler during World War II, but went on to join the U.S. Army and serve in the Korean and Vietnam wars.


Obituary

'Black Hawk Down' veteran James McMahon dies at age 64

Delta Force sniper Sgt. 1st Class James P. McMahon, one of the survivors of the October 1993 battle in Mogadishu, Somalia that claimed the lives of 18 U.S. service members, died Nov. 5. He was 64.


‘Cajun Bob’ Thoms, Marine who led major assault during Vietnam War’s Battle of Hue, dies at 75

Robert L. Thoms — nicknamed “Cajun Bob” for his thick native Baton Rouge accent — was awarded the Silver Star medal for “conspicuous gallantry” during the assault on the Arch Tower on Feb. 15, 1968, during some of the most ferocious fighting of North Vietnam’s Tet Offensive.


With death of Lauren Bruner, 98, only three survivors of USS Arizona attack remain

During a news conference in 2014, Lauren Bruner announced he decided to have the urn that would hold his cremated ashes interred aboard the USS Arizona.


Obituary

Last living Doolittle Raider dies in Texas at 103

Retired Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole was one of 80 members of the first U.S. strike against Japanese mainland targets in World War II, credited for bringing optimism of winning the war to the American people.


With death of 98-year-old muleskinner, only nine Merrill’s Marauders remain

Sgt. Henry C. Smith was awarded a Silver Star for his efforts in leading an intelligence and reconnaissance patrol through the jungles of Burma in April 1944. He died Aug. 5 at the age of 98.


Obituary

Branko Lustig, Holocaust survivor and Oscar-winning producer of 'Schindler's List,' dies at 87

Holocaust survivor Branko Lustig's film career took him to movie sets across Europe and to Hollywood, where in 1994 he shared the Academy Award for best picture as a producer of "Schindler's List." Lustig died Nov. 14 in Croatia. He was 87.


Retired soldier who was wounded in 2009 search for Bowe Bergdahl has died

A soldier who was shot in the head while searching for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who had deserted his post and was captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan, died Saturday.


Francis Currey, one of the last living Medal of Honor recipients from World War II, dies at 94

Francis Currey's Medal of Honor — which he received on July 27, 1945, after the Allied victory in Europe and just before the defeat of Japan — was one of 472 awarded for service during World War II, according to the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.


Former Navy SEAL Rudy Boesch, an early fan favorite on ‘Survivor,’ dies at 91

Rudy Boesch, a retired, tough-as-nails Navy SEAL and fan favorite on the inaugural season of “Survivor,” has died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. He was 91.