This year might not measure up to the number of celebrity deaths as 2016, but a lot of cultural lights went out in 2017, nonetheless.
One of the most shocking losses of the year was Tom Petty, who died in October. The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer had hits across five decades as a solo act, a member of supergroup the Traveling Wilburys and fronting his band the Heartbreakers. He was 66.
Other musicians we lost this year: Chuck Berry; Fats Domino; Chris Cornell of Soundgarden (who died in May a few days after appearing at Starlight Theatre) and Audioslave; Glen Campbell; Mel Tellis; Malcolm Young of AC/DC; Clyde Stubblefield; Joni Sledge of Sister Sledge; Gord Downie of the Tragically Hip; Don Williams; and Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks of the Allman Brothers.
Jim Nabors had big-selling albums in the 1960s and ’70s, but he was best known for his TV role as Gomer Pyle in “The Andy Griffith Show” and “Gomer Pyle USMC.” Della Reese starred in “Touched by an Angel.” Erin Moran played Joanie Cunningham on “Happy Days.” Chuck Barris brought us the best worst acts in entertainment on “The Gong Show.” And Adam West played the Caped Crusader on the 1960s megahit “Batman.”
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Mary Tyler Moore was a TV icon but she also was nominated for an Oscar for her role in “Ordinary People.” Sir Roger Moore played 007 in several James Bond movies in the 1970s and ’80s. Director George Romero birthed the zombie genre with “Night of the Living Dead.” Tobe Hooper made us scared of country cannibals with his terrifying “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”
And we lost two kings of comedy in 2017: Jerry Lewis and Don Rickles.
Take a look at our video and photo gallery for more.