Famous People Who Died In 2017
The world is mourning the deaths of so many legends. They will all be missed.
It’s hard to believe that 2017 is already coming to a close. As we look back on the year, we’re reminded of all of the well-known singers, actors and other celebrities who passed away in 2017. Here’s a list of four dozen famous people whose deaths we mourned in 2017.
– Additional reporting by Sarah Kuta and Augusta Statz.
1. Della Reese
“Touched By An Angel” star Della Reese passed away in her home on Nov. 19 at the age of 86. “She was an incredible wife, mother, grandmother, friend and pastor, as well as an award-winning actress and singer,” her costar Roma Downey said in a statement on behalf of the late actress’ family. “Through her life and work she touched and inspired the lives of millions of people.”
2. Tom Petty
3. Roy Halladay
Former MLB pitcher Roy Halladay was just 40 years old when he died in a plane crash off the Gulf of Mexico on Nov. 7. He left behind two children and his wife, Brandy.
4. Fats Domino
Rock ‘n’ roll pioneer Fats Domino passed away due to natural causes on Oct. 24 at the age of 89. He was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
5. Harry Dean Stanton
Known for his roles in “Twin Peaks,” “Alien” and “The Green Mile,” prolific character actor Harry Dean Stanton died at the age of 91 on Sept. 15. His career spanned more than six decades.
6. Jerry Lewis
Comedic legend Jerry Lewis passed away on Aug. 20 at the age of 91. In addition to his numerous contributions to the field of comedy, he was well known for his philanthropic efforts, including his annual “Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon,” which he hosted for 44 years to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
7. Chester Bennington
Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington took his own life on July 20. He was just 41, and left behind a wife and six children.
8. Stevie Ryan
9. Walter Becker
Steely Dan co-founder Walter Becker died on Sept. 3 at the age of 67. Becker started playing music with Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen in 1967, when the two met at Bard College.
10. Mary Tyler Moore
Sitcom star Mary Tyler Moore died from complications from pneumonia on Jan. 25 at the age of 80. The iconic actress was beloved for her comedic prowess, sunny disposition and pioneering role in changing the way women were represented on television.
11. Chuck Berry
Legendary rock ‘n’ roll musician Chuck Berry passed away on March 18 at the age of 90. Some of his hits include “Johnny B. Goode” and “Maybellene.”
12. Sam Shepherd
Multi-talented playwright, actor, screenwriter and director Sam Shepherd died of Lou Gehrig’s disease on July 27. He was 73.
Rapper Prodigy died on June 20 following a hospitalization for complications from sickle-cell anemia. He was 42. He was best known for his role as one half of the duo Mobb Deep.
14. Adam West
Actor Adam West died on June 9 at the age of 88 after a battle with leukemia. West was best known for his portrayal of the title character in the “Batman” television series in the 1960s.
15. Chris Cornell
Musician Chris Cornell committed suicide on May 18. He was 52. Cornell served as frontman for the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave.
16. Don Rickles
Legendary comedian Don Rickles died of kidney failure on April 6, just a month shy of his 90th birthday. Rickles was known for in his insult humor, but was known for being a kind and caring man underneath his tough persona.
17. Erin Moran
Best known as Joanie on “Happy Days,” Erin Moran died on April 22 at the age of 56 following a battle with cancer. Moran said she thought of her co-stars on the show as family. Here are five things you may not know about the star:
18. Dick Gregory
Comedian and social justice activist Dick Gregory died on Aug. 19 at the age of 84. Gregory used humor to raise awareness about racism and the civil rights movement.
19. Bill Paxton
Actor Bill Paxton died on Feb. 25 at the age of 61 following complications from surgery. Paxton had roles in a number of notable movies, including “The Terminator,” “Aliens” and “Titanic.”
20. David Cassidy
After suffering organ failure, former teen idol David Cassidy died on Nov. 21 at the age of 67. Cassidy played Keith Partridge on the iconic “The Partridge Family” TV show in the 1970s.
21. Don Williams
Country music star Don Williams died at the age of 78 on Sept. 8. He had 17 No. 1 country hits throughout his long career. He retired from performing in 2016.
22. Jim Nabors
Best known as Gomer Pyle on “The Andy Griffith Show” and its subsequent spin-offs, Jim Nabors died on Nov. 30 at the age of 87. Nabors was famous for his character’s catchphrase, “Goll-eee.”
23. Liz Smith
Famous gossip columnist Liz Smith died on Nov. 12 at the age of 94. Smith differentiated herself from others in her industry by her often kind treatment of the celebrities she wrote about.
24. Hugh Hefner
25. Monty Hall
Game show host Monty Hall died on Sept. 30 after suffering a heart attack following his wife’s death in June. He was 96. Hall also co-created “Let’s Make A Deal,” the popular game show that he also hosted.
26. Martin Landau
Actor Martin Landau died on July 15 at the age of 89. Before becoming an actor, Landau also worked as cartoonist.
27. Gregg Allman
Musician Gregg Allman died of complications from liver cancer on May 27 at the age of 69. Along with his late brother, Duane, Allman founded the Allman Brother Band in 1969.
28. John Heard
Actor John Heard died of a sudden heart attack on July 21 at the age of 71. Perhaps best known for his role as Peter McAllister, Kevin’s dad in “Home Alone,” Heard appeared in nearly 200 films throughout his career.
29. Troy Gentry
Country star Troy Gentry died on Sept. 8 following a helicopter crash in New Jersey. He was 50. Gentry was one half of the country duo known as Montgomery Gentry, and they had plans to release a new album before his tragic death.
30. Robert Guillaume
Actor Robert Guillaume died on Oct. 24 from complications due to prostate cancer. Some of Guillame’s most notable roles included the title character in the sitcom “Benson” as well as the voice of Rafiki in “The Lion King.”
31. Ralphie May
After suffering cardiac arrest, stand-up comedian Ralphie May died on Oct. 6 at the age of 45. May starred in a number of comedy specials, including “Ralphie May: Unruly,” which premiered on Netflix in 2015.
32. Chuck Low
Best known for his role as Morrie in 1990’s “Goodfellas,” actor Chuck Low died in a nursing home in New Jersey on Sept. 18 at the age of 89. Prior to success in Hollywood, Low spent 30 years as a U.S. Army Reserve and eight years in the National Guard.
33. Jimmy Snuka
WWE star Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka died on Jan. 15 at the age of 73 after a battle with stomach cancer. Murder charges in the 1983 death of his mistress were dropped shortly before his death.
34. Heather Menzies-Urich
Heather Menzies-Urich was best known for playing Louisa von Trapp in the 1965 movie “The Sound of Music.” She died at the age of 68 after a battle with brain cancer.
35. Charlie Murphy
Charlie Murphy died at the age of 57 from leukemia. In addition to being an accomplished comedian, Murphy was a star on “Chappelle’s Show” and the older brother of actor Eddie Murphy.
36. Sue Grafton
Accomplished author Sue Grafton died late in 2017 at the age of 77. Her detective novels were titled using letters from the alphabet—”A Is For Alibi” was the first book in the series.
37. Bruce McCandless
Astronaut Bruce McCandless became the first person to fly untethered in space in February 1984. He logged more than 300 hours in space during his long career. McCandless died at the age of 80.
38. June Foray
Though you may not recognize her face, you’d likely know her voice if you heard it. June Foray, an accomplished voice actress, died at the age of 99. Some of her most notable roles include Rocky the flying squirrel and Natasha Fatale in Rocky and Bullwinkle.
39. Ueli Steck
Ueli Steck was a celebrity in the climbing world. The Swiss mountaineer died at the age of 40 after a fall near Mount Everest.
40. Miguel Ferrer
Actor Miguel Ferrer was perhaps best known for his role in “NCIS: Los Angeles.” He also appeared in “RoboCop” and “Iron Man 3.” Ferrer died at the age of 61 of throat cancer.
41. John Hurt
Oscar-nominated British actor John Hurt appeared in “The Elephant Man,” “Midnight Express,” “Doctor Who” and three Harry Potter films. He died in London at the age of 77.
42. Glen Campbell
The world also lost country music star Glen Campbell in 2017. The singer, who died at the age of 81, was best known for the hit songs “Gentle on My Mind,” “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.”
43. Rose Marie
Actress Rose Marie was a star on the hit 1960s sitcom “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” She also appeared in other shows, including “The Love Boat” and “Murphy Brown.” She died at the age of 94.
44. Jay Thomas
Actor Jay Thomas died at the age of 69 after a battle with cancer. He was a two-time Emmy winner who appeared in “Murphy Brown,” “Cheers” and other shows.
45. Robert Hardy
Harry Potter fans will remember British actor Robert Hardy for playing Cornelius Fudge, the “Minister of Magic.” His acting career spanned 70 years and included roles in theatre, film and television. He died at the age of 91.
46. Nelsan Ellis
Actor Nelsan Ellis was best known for his role on HBO’s hit vampire series “True Blood.” He died of complications from heart failure at the age of 39.
47. Roger Moore
British actor Roger Moore, who appeared in seven films as James Bond, died at the age of 89 after a short battle with cancer. He played the role of James Bond in more movies than any other actor and was also known for his humanitarian efforts.
48. Michael Bond
If you were a fan of Paddington Bear, you have Michael Bond to thank for creating the lovable character. The British author published “A Bear Called Paddington” in 1958. Bond died at the age of 91.