Saying Goodbye: Celebrities We Lost in 2013

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December 31, 2013

It’s the end of 2013 and, while many of us are looking forward to the new year, there are many who did not live to see what the future holds.  Of course, almost everyone has experienced a loss in their personal lives but we are still saddened by the loss of the familiar faces that brought joy and happiness to the hearts of people around the world.  As we prepare for 2014, we say goodbye to some of those in the entertainment world that we loss in 2013.

Conrad Bain – For long-time television fans, Bain will always be Mr. Drummond, the privileged white man who took in two African-American foster kids on Diff’rent Strokes.  Sadly, only Todd Bridges remains to carry on the legacy.

Mindy McCready – The country star had been troubled for a long time but her suicide still came as a shock to her many fans.  Her husband had died in a similar manner not long before she took her own life after killing the family dog.

Roger Ebert – The Chicago Sun-Times has not been the same since the loss of Roger Ebert, the film critic who set the standard for the industry.  His ability to review a film is unparalleled and many were terribly saddened by his death after battling cancer for many years.

Jean Stapleton – Stapleton had many successes but she will likely be remembered best for crooning along with Carol O’Connor during the All in the Family theme song.  During her time as Edith, the wife of the forever surly Archie Bunker, she brought comedy and levity to a show that often tackled serious topics.

James Gandolfini – it almost seemed like the earth stood still when the shocking news of Gandolfini’s sudden death was announced.  After his years as Tony Soprano on the hit HBO show, The Sopranos, it almost felt like he was a member of the family.  Sadly, he passed away of a heart attack while on vacation in Italy with his son.

Dennis Farina – Farina had an illustrious career and, after dropping off the radar for a little while, it seemed like he was making a comeback after being cast on Zooey Deschanel’s hit show, New Girl.  Unfortunately, the actor passed away and his death was written into the show.

Gia Allemand – the beautiful model first gained notoriety as a contestant on The Bachelor when Jake Pavelka left viewers confused and infuriated after he sent her home in favor of Vienna Girardi.  She then made an appearance on Bachelor Pad and many wanted her to be named the next Bachelorette.  Instead, she began dating NBA star, Ryan Anderson, but things clearly did not go as planned.  While on the telephone with her mother, Gia took her own life by hanging herself in her home.

Cory Monteith – Another unexpected shock was the death of this Glee star.  His squeaky clean, on-screen image made it even more unbelievable that he died of a drug overdose.  It seemed like his life was on the fast-track to happiness due to his television success and relationship with co-star, Lea Michelle.  Tragically, he was discovered dead in his hotel room during a visit to Vancouver.

Tom Clancy – There are few authors who will attain that type of success enjoyed by Tom Clancy.  His books were so popular that several were adapted into films (Clear and Present Danger, for example) and he created the extremely well-received franchise of Rainbow Six video games.  His death was surprising and no details were confirmed or released.

Sylvia Browne – She made a name for herself as a psychic, particularly as a frequent guest on Montel Williams’ talk show.  She sold millions of books foretelling the future and providing a glimpse into the afterlife and the mysteries of the earth.  Her accuracy and validity has been questioned over the years, particularly in relation to an instance where she told the mother of kidnap victim, Amanda Berry, that her daughter was dead (Berry, along with two other women, were found alive this year).  Still, she was loved by many who will feel her loss for years to come.

Paul Walker – The loss of this young, 40-year-old actor was absolutely devastating to fans and his co-stars from the Fast and Furious franchise.  The man who gained international fame for his skills behind the wheel ironically lost his life as a passenger in his friend’s Porsche.  He starred in many memorable films including Varsity Blues, The Skulls, Joy Ride and Eight Below.  His kind, generous nature and charity work, along with his daughter, Meadow, will be his enduring legacy.

A few other celebrities worth remembering include Marcia Wallace, Lou Reed, Richard Griffiths, Lee  Thompson Young and Lisa Robin Kelly.

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