Liz Smith was a syndicated gossip columnist whose mixture of banter, barbs, and bon mots about the glitterati helped her climb the A-list as high as many of the celebrities she covered. She died Nov. 12 at her home in Manhattan. She was 94. Smith’s column was one of the most widely read in the world for more than a quarter-century. Her column was syndicated nationwide, drawing millions of readers. She ultimately wrote for nine New York newspapers — including columns for the New York Daily News, Newsday and The New York Post — and dozens of magazines.
Malcolm Young was rhythm guitarist and co-founder of hard rock band AC/DC. The band announced his death Nov. 18 on its official Facebook page and website. The posts did not say when or where he died, but said he had been suffering from dementia. He was 64. Young was the key writer and leader of the band, which has sold more than 200 million albums and created such head-banging anthems as “Highway to Hell,” “Hells Bells” and “Back in Black.” In 2014, the band released “Rock or Bust,” the first AC/DC album without Young.
Bobby Doerr was a Hall of Fame second baseman for the Boston Red Sox. He died Nov. 13 in Junction City, Ore. He was 99. Doerr played for the Red Sox during 1937-51. He had a .288 lifetime average with 2,042 hits, 223 home runs and 1,247 RBIs. He was a nine-time All-Star and helped the Red Sox reach the 1946 World Series. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986 by the Veterans Committee.
Fernando “Ferdie” Pacheco was known as “The Fight Doctor” and served as Muhammad Ali’s ringside physician. He died Nov. 16 at his Miami home after a prolonged illness, his daughter said. He was 89. Pacheco met Cassius Clay, who would later become Muhammad Ali, in 1960 when the fighter began training with Angelo Dundee at the 5th Street Gym in Miami Beach. He worked as Ali’s cornerman during 1962-1977. He went on to become a television boxing analyst, as well as a painter and author.
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Thomas Hudner Jr. was a former U.S. Navy captain and pilot who received the Medal of Honor for his heroics during the Korean War. He died Nov. 13 at his home in Concord, Mass. He was 93. Hudner was awarded the Medal of Honor during the Korean War in 1950 after his plane came under enemy fire and he crash-landed in an unsuccessful effort to save the life of his wingman and friend, Ensign Jesse Brown, the Navy’s first black combat pilot. He watched this year as the USS Thomas Hudner, a destroyer, was christened in Maine.
Naim Suleymanoglu was a Turkish weightlifter who won three Olympic gold medals and was known as “Pocket Hercules.” He died Nov. 18 at an Istanbul hospital. He had been in intensive care since Sept. 28 and received a liver transplant in October, according to Turkey’s official news agency. He was 50. Suleymanoglu, who was born in Bulgaria and defected to Turkey in 1986, won three straight Olympic gold medals between 1988 and 1996. He was only 4 feet 10 inches tall and weighed about 135 pounds, but could lift three times his weight.
Jeremy Hutchinson was a lawyer who helped liberalize British laws around sex and freedom of expression. He died Nov. 13 at his home in Lullington, England. He was 102. Hutchinson was part of the team in 1960 that successfully defended Penguin Books against obscenity charges for publishing D.H. Lawrence’s novel “Lady Chatterley’s Lover.” He went on to fight in court on behalf of the erotic novel “Fanny Hill” and the explicit movie “Last Tango in Paris.” Other clients included model Christine Keeler, a key figure in the 1963 “Profumo Affair” sex-and-espionage scandal; Soviet spy George Blake; and drug smuggler Howard Marks.
Steve Mostyn was a powerful Texas trial lawyer who was among the nation’s largest backers of liberal causes and candidates. He died Nov. 15 after what his wife, Amber, says was “a sudden onset and battle with a mental health issue.” He was 46. Mostyn’s fortune came largely from representing homeowners who sued insurance companies, especially after major hurricanes. As President Barack Obama was being re-elected in 2012, Mostyn, his wife and his Houston-based law firm contributed nearly $5 million to the Democratic Party and its candidates for federal office, making them the United States’ 10th-largest donors.
Paul Buckmaster was a Grammy winner who arranged and orchestrated some of the best-known songs of David Bowie, the Rolling Stones and Elton John among others in a career that spanned a half-century. He died Nov. 7 in Los Angeles, according to his assistant. He was 71. Buckmaster was known for punchy string arrangements that added emotional power to rock classics such as the Stones’ “Moonlight Mile” and Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer.” His credits also included Bowie’s “Space Oddity,” a 1972 album for Miles Davis, Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” and music for Guns N' Roses and Taylor Swift. He won a 2002 Grammy Award for his arrangement work on Train’s “Drops of Jupiter.”
Jim Rivera was an outfielder on the 1959 “Go-Go” White Sox pennant-winning team. He died Nov. 13 in Fort Wayne, Ind. He was 96. Rivera, known as “Jungle Jim,” spent most of his 10-year major-league career with the White Sox, leading the American League in triples in 1953 and steals in 1955. He began his career in 1952 with the St. Louis Browns and ended it with the Kansas City Athletics in 1961, batting .256 in his career.
Compiled from news service reports by Chris Carter, firstname.lastname@example.org.