RIP: Moon River's Andy Williams, at 84

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RIP: Moon River's Andy Williams, at 84
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Andy Williams, one of America's top pop vocalists of the 1960s and best known for "Moon River," died Tuesday of bladder cancer. He was 84.

From the Los Angeles Times:

Williams said he never tired of singing "Moon River," whose melody he considered "beautiful" and whose lyrics he called "timeless."

"You wouldn't believe how 'Moon River' became a hit," he said in a 1989 interview with the Chicago Tribune. "I was having dinner with [songwriters] Henry Mancini and Johnny Mercer, who had just finished recording the movie Breakfast at Tiffany's, with Audrey Hepburn singing 'Moon River' out on the balcony with a guitar.

"So Mancini and Mercer played this song for me, which I thought was great. But my record company was really into singles then, and they said: 'I don't think phrases like 'my Huckleberry friend' will make it with the kids — they won't know what it means.'"

But about four weeks before the 1962 Academy Awards program, he recalled, "I was invited to sing 'Moon River' on the Oscars show, and Columbia Records decided we ought to rush a 'Moon River' album into the stores, because that tune looked like a shoo-in for the 'best song' Oscar.

"So they quickly put out an album, had it in the stores on the day of the Oscars, and the next morning it sold 500,000 copies."

NASA Remembers Neil Armstrong of the Day

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Neil Armstrong was laid to rest at sea today. The pics are amazing, as is this video tribute by NASA.

RIP, Neil.

[doobybrain]

RIP: Libya Ambassador Chris Stevens, at 52

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RIP: Libya Ambassador Chris Stevens, at 52
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U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens was killed late Tuesday -- September 11 -- along with three other embassy staff after armed militants stormed the U.S. consulate in Benghazi in retaliation for a California businessman's low-budget anti-Muslim film, Innocence of Muslims, that attacks Islam's prophet Muhammad.

President Obama condemned the attacks, which also occurred at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, and said that they will "not break the bonds" between the U.S. and Libya:

We will not waiver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. And make no mistake, justice will be done.

There was no threat of military action or economic sanctions -- the U.S. considers Libya a friendly state.

Mitt Romney called Obama's response to the attacks "disgraceful," while Republican Party Chair Reince Preibus dragged some disgusting politics into the tragedy: "Obama sympathizes with attackers in Egypt. Sad and pathetic."

Stevens, who was 52, served as envoy to the Libyan rebels in 2011 when NATO aircraft helped rebels overthrow the 40-year-old regime and eventually capture and kill Gaddafi.

In a video introduction released by the State Department shortly after he was appointed ambassador in May, Stevens said he "was thrilled to watch the Libyan people stand up and demand their rights."

[telegraph]

RIP: Michael Clarke Duncan, At 54

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RIP: Michael Clarke Duncan, At 54
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Michael Clarke Duncan, Academy Award-nominated actor for The Green Mile, died this morning due to complications of a prior heart attack. He was 54.

[washingtonpost]

RIP: Neil Armstrong, at 82 [UPDATED]

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RIP: Neil Armstrong, at 82 [UPDATED]
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Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, has died. He was 82.

Considered a hero to many the world over, Armstrong was granted honors from 17 countries, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

Born in Ohio in 1930, Armstrong served as a naval pilot at 19 -- the beginning of a long, impressive aerospace career that changed history as we know it. Upon his moon landing, he stated, "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."

A statement from Armstrong's family suggests his death was caused by complications of recent heart surgery. The family also left the world with this advice:

For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request. Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink.

[breakingnews / cbs]

RIP: Phyllis Diller, at 95

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RIP: Phyllis Diller, at 95
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By Unknown
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Legendary comic Phyllis Diller -- who Joan Rivers says "broke the way for every woman comedian" -- died today in her sleep. She was 95 and had been in a hospice care since a recent fall.

Diller rose to fame in the 1960s with guest spots on Laugh In and TV specials featuring Bob Hope. She later starred in her own shows, The Phyllis Diller Show and The Beautiful Phyllis Diller Show.

Watch her bring down the house on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1969.

[tmz]

RIP: Tony Scott, at 68

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RIP: Tony Scott, at 68
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ABC News is reporting that famed Top Gun director Tony Scott, who "shocked Hollywood and fans of his movies" on Sunday when he jumped to his death "without any hesitation" from a bridge in San Pedro, CA, was suffering from inoperable brain cancer.

Scott, brother of director Ridley Scott, reportedly left a note, though its contents have not been made public. An autopsy of Scott's body is planned, and his death is being investigated as a suicide.

Regardless of the way Scott died, British actor Simon Pegg tweeted what many are thinking: "So sad to hear about Tony Scott. A master of grand action, nail biting pace and atmosphere. A real loss to film making."

Scott also directed True Romance and Days of Thunder, and most recently produced Prometheus and The Good Wife.

[abc]