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RIP
February 10, 2019

Rep. Walter Jones Jr. (R-N.C.), a one-time supporter of the Iraq War who regretted his vote after attending the 2003 funeral of a Marine killed in action, died Sunday, on his 76th birthday.

Jones broke his hip in a fall, and after suffering complications, entered hospice care in January. His congressional office did not release the cause of death. In November, he was re-elected to his 13th term in office.

Jones initially supported the Iraq War, and after France opposed the invasion, he was behind the push to have House cafeterias call French fries "Freedom Fries," NBC News reports. In 2003, he attended the funeral of a Marine killed in the war, Sgt. Michael Blitz, and he then regretted his vote, Jones told The Associated Press in 2017. Jones wrote a letter of apology to Blitz's family, and went on to write 11,000 more to the relatives of service members who died in the war.

A conservative Christian, he opposed abortion, same-sex marriage, and taxes, and in 2017, was the only Republican in the House to vote against the GOP tax bill, saying it would add too much to the national debt. "He was a public servant who was true to his convictions and who will be missed," Gov. Roy Cooper (D-N.C.) said in a statement. Catherine Garcia

February 7, 2019

Former Rep. John Dingell, the country's longest-serving congressman, died on Thursday, after battling cancer and heart issues. He was 92.

A Democrat from Michigan, the World War II veteran was first elected to Congress in 1955, taking over the seat his father held for two decades. He retired in January 2015 at age 88, after helping write major environmental, energy, civil rights, and health care legislation. He was also a champion of the automotive industry.

Once he announced his retirement, Dingell's wife, Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.), said she would run for his seat; she was elected in 2014. Over the last several years, Dingell was active on Twitter, commenting on politics and sports. In his last message, posted Wednesday, Dingell said his wife insisted he "rest and stay off here, but after long negotiations, we've worked out a deal where she'll keep up with Twitter for me as I dictate the messages. I want to thank you all for your incredibly kind words and prayers. You're not done with me just yet." Catherine Garcia

January 29, 2019

Grammy-winning R&B singer James Ingram has died, his friend Debbie Allen announced on Tuesday. He was 66.

"I have lost my dearest friend and creative partner James Ingram to the celestial choir," she tweeted. "He will always be cherished, loved, and remembered for his genius, his love of family, and his humanity. I am blessed to have been so close. We will forever speak his name." The cause of death has not been released.

While working as a session keyboard player and singer in the early 1980s, one of Ingram's demos got into the hands of Quincy Jones, who asked Ingram to sing several songs on his album, The Dude. Ingram's breakout hit was his 1982 duet with Patti Austin, "Baby, Come to Me," and he co-wrote Michael Jackson's "P.Y.T." with Jones and appeared in the "We Are the World" video. He was also known for his soundtrack work, which brought him two Oscar nominations; Ingram sang "Somewhere Out There" with Linda Ronstadt for the 1986 movie An American Tail, and composed songs for Beethoven's 2nd, Beverly Hills Cop II, and Junior. Catherine Garcia

January 16, 2019

Jack Bogle, the founder of The Vanguard Group and creator of the index fund, died Wednesday. He was 89.

Vanguard is the world's largest mutual fund organization, now managing $4.9 trillion in global assets. When he created what is now known as the Vanguard 500 Index Fund, he was ridiculed by Wall Street, with the fund dubbed "Bogle's Folly." In his letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders in February 2017, billionaire investor Warren Buffet praised Bogle, saying that he was "frequently mocked by the investment-management industry," but "he helped millions of investors realize far better returns on their savings than they otherwise would have earned. He is a hero to them and to me."

Bogle grew up during the Great Depression, and studied economics at Princeton. He founded Vanguard in 1975, and served as chairman and CEO until 1996. Bogle also wrote 13 books about investing, with his final tome, Stay the Course: The Story of Vanguard and the Index Revolution, published in December. He is survived by his wife, Eve, and six children. Catherine Garcia

January 2, 2019

Blake Nordstrom, the co-president of Nordstrom, died on Wednesday. He was 58.

In December, Nordstrom announced he had been diagnosed with lymphoma but was still planning on working. The department store's chairman, Brad Smith, said in a statement that "everyone who worked with Blake knew of his passion and deep commitment to employees, customers, and the communities we serve." Nordstrom served as co-president alongside his brothers, Pete Nordstrom and Erik Nordstrom.

Born on Oct. 4, 1960, Nordstrom was the eldest of three sons. He worked his way up the ranks at the family company, which was founded by his great-grandfather, Swedish immigrant John Nordstrom, in 1901. Nordstrom spent the last few years overseeing corporate functions and Nordstrom Rack stores, and in November, he said he was focused on making Nordstrom the "best fashion retailer in a digital world." Nordstrom is survived by his wife, Molly; a son and a daughter; his father, Bruce; and his brothers. Catherine Garcia

December 29, 2018

A terminally ill toddler named Abdullah Hassan died Friday at a hospital in California. He was just 2 years old.

Hassan's story came to national attention because his mother, Shaima Swileh, was denied a visa to travel from Yemen to visit him in his final days. The boy and his father, Ali Hassan, both held American citizenship, but the Yemeni Swileh was unable to join them in the States because Yemen is among the eight nations listed in the Trump administration's revised travel ban.

With help from the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Sacramento, the family sued the State Department for a waiver. It was granted Dec. 18, and Swileh was able to see her son.

"We are heartbroken. We had to say goodbye to our baby, the light of our lives," Ali Hassan said Friday of his son's death. "We want to thank everyone for your love and support at this difficult time. We ask you to kindly keep Abdullah and our family in your thoughts and prayers." Bonnie Kristian

December 26, 2018

Major League Soccer coach Sigi Schmid died Tuesday in Los Angeles. He was 65.

Schmid was in need of a heart transplant, and was hospitalized three weeks ago, the Los Angeles Times reports. Schmid coached three MLS teams — the Seattle Sounders, the L.A. Galaxy, and the Columbus Crew — and had the most wins of any league coach in history, with 266 regular and postseason victories over 18 seasons. In 2015, he was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame.

Born in Germany, Schmid moved to Southern California with his family when he was 4 years old. He earned a degree in economics from UCLA, and went on to coach the school's men's soccer team for 19 years, leading the Bruins to three NCAA championships. In September, he was fired from the Galaxy while the team was on a six-game losing streak, and at the time he said he was thinking about writing a book. "I know I've accomplished some things and I know I've won some titles, others have won more titles than me and that's fine," he said earlier this season. "What I'm the most proud of are players that I found or players that I've helped get to the next level. That's my greatest joy." He is survived by his wife, Valerie, four children, and several grandchildren. Catherine Garcia

December 18, 2018

Laverne & Shirley star Penny Marshall has died at 75, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

The actress played Laverne DeFazio on the Happy Days spinoff before going on to direct A League of Their Own and Big. Her family says she died "peacefully on Monday night in her Hollywood Hills home due to complications from diabetes," per the Times.

Marshall kicked off her career with guest starring roles on The Odd Couple, which her brother Garry Marshall executive produced, and other comedies. After starring on Laverne & Shirley alongside Cindy Williams, she occasionally made cameo spots and took other guest roles on TV. Most of her attention went to directing, becoming the second woman ever to direct an Best Picture nominee with Awakenings. Big was the first film directed by a woman to make more than $100 million in the U.S. box office, per The Hollywood Reporter.

Marshall also loved sports, especially the Los Angeles Lakers, the Times details. A League of Their Own was about a professional women's baseball team, and her most recent project was a still-forthcoming documentary about NBA star Dennis Rodman. Following the news of Marshall's death, friends and admirers tweeted their appreciation and memories. Kathryn Krawczyk

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