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In Memoriam – Remembering those we lost in 2015

The MeTV family pays tribute to those who died this year, from Leonard Nimoy to Yvonne Craig and beyond.

As the year draws to a close, it is time to look back and praise all those who sadly passed in 2015. We lost three cast members of Star Trek. We lost both the first Jimmy Olsen and the first Batgirl to appear on television. Memorable sitcom characters, Disney family members and horror movie icons died this year.

Let us remember these 35 actors, pop musicians and artists — and all those — who passed away over the last twelve months. Their legacies will live long and prosper.


In Memoriam - Remembering those we lost in 2015

Donna Douglas

September 26, 1932 – January 1, 2015

Best known as Elly May Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies, Douglas also appeared as the face of beauty in the classic Twilight Zone episode "Eye of the Beholder."

Lesley Gore

May 2, 1946 – February 16, 2015

At the age of 16, the Brooklyn-born pop singer hit number one with "It's My Party" (the first hit for producer Quincy Jones). More hits like "You Don't Own Me" followed. This year, "It's My Party" was sampled for another chart success, "Pity Party" by The Voice veteran Melanie Martinez.

Leonard Nimoy

March 26, 1931 – February 27, 2015

What else needs to be said about the legend who was Spock? He taught us all how to live long and prosper.

James Best

July 26, 1926 – April 6, 2015

Best appeared on just about every western you can name, from Gunsmoke to The Rebel, but became most widely known as Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane on The Dukes of Hazzard.

Jayne Meadows Allen

September 27, 1919 – April 26, 2015

The wife of Steve Allen was a formidable comedian in her own right, as proven in her many spots on I've Got a Secret. She and her husband made their finally appearance together onscreen with a Diagnosis: Murder episode in 1999.

Suzanne Crough

March 6, 1963 – April 27, 2015

Crough portrayed Tracy Partridge, the youngest of the singing siblings on The Partridge Family.

Grace Lee Whitney

April 1, 1930 – May 1, 2015

The actress entered the sci-fi hall of fame as Captain's yeoman Janice Rand of the Enterprise on the first season of Star Trek. She played a prominent role in classic episodes like "Charlie X" and "The Enemy Within," yet was cut from the show in the first season.

B.B. King

September 16, 1925 – May 14, 2015

The blues icon and rock & roll pioneer appeared on several television shows throughout his career, everything from Sanford and Son to Touched by an Angel.

Anne Meara

September 20, 1929 – May 23, 2015

Half of the comedy team Stiller and Meara with husband Jerry Stiller, and mother to Ben Stiller, Meara appeared regularly on Rhoda as flight attendant Sally Gallagher, close friend of the title character. Later, she appeared on sitcoms like Archie Bunker's Place and ALF, just to name a couple.

Christopher Lee

May 27, 1922 – June 7, 2015

The horror legend was Dracula, a Bond villain, Star Wars villain, Lord of the Rings wizard and much, much more. We loved him in the eerie Alfred Hitchcock Hour episode "The Sign of Satan," too.

Dick Van Patten

December 9, 1928 – June 23, 2015

The television veteran cut his teeth on series such as Naked City, The Doris Day ShowEmergency! and Happy Days before earning a place in the TV Dad Hall of Fame as Tom Bradford on Eight Is Enough.

Patrick Macnee

February 6, 1922 – June 25, 2015

The English gentleman became secret agent extraordinaire John Steed on The Avengers. Macnee also appeared in a Columbo mystery.

Omar Sharif

April 10, 1932 – July 9, 2015

The Egyptian icon became a Hollywood idol in classics like Lawrence of Arabia, Doctor Zhivago and Funny Girl.

Roger Rees

May 5, 1944 – July 10, 2015

The Welsh actor played Robin Colcord on Cheers, the rich rival of Sam Malone for the love of Rebecca. 

Frank Gifford

August 16, 1930 – August 9, 2015

The giant New York Giant was more than a football legend. He also appeared on several television shows, such as Hazel and What's My Line?.

Yvonne Craig

May 16, 1937 – August 17, 2015

The beautiful and cool Craig was pioneering superhero as the motorcycle-riding Batgirl on Batman. She is also part of Star Trek lore as the green-skinned Marta on "Whom Gods Destroy." Costar Adam West paid sweet tribute to his former sidekick after her death. You can catch her as part of MeTV's Super Sci-Fi Saturday Night.

Wes Craven

August 2, 1939 – August 30, 2015

The brilliant horror director made us keep the lights on with several of his landmark films.

Dean Jones

January 25, 1931 – September 1, 2015

Disney dad Dean Jones earned our love in The Love Bug. He was also great alongside both cats (That Darn Cat!) and dogs (Beethoven).

Judy Carne

April 27, 1939 – September 3, 2015

Carne, pictured on the left in a Saturday Evening Post spread alongside Goldie Hawn and Chelsea Brown, popularized the phrase "Sock it to me!" on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In.

Martin Milner

December 28, 1931 – September 6, 2015

The Route 66 star went on to be the lead in the gripping police drama Adam-12. His portrayal of Pete Malloy meant so much to the LAPD, that the force honored him with a touching tribute after his death.

Jack Larson

February 8, 1928 – September 20, 2015

Larson helped define the character of Superman pal Jimmy Olsen on The Adventures of Superman. Read more about his life and career in our tribute.

Pat Woodell

July 12, 1944 – September 29, 2015

Pat Woodell was best known as Bobbie Jo Bradley — the first Bobbie Jo — on Petticoat Junction. Read our obituary.

Kevin Corcoran

June 10, 1949 – October 6, 2015

Disney kid Corcoran appeared in canine classics Old Yeller and The Shaggy Dog.

Paul Prudhomme

July 13, 1940 – October 8, 2015

One of the first celebrity chefs, the Cajun cook introduced the turducken to the world. Read more here.

Bruce Hyde

September 14, 1941 – October 13, 2015

After playing Lt. Kevin Riley on Star Trek, where he memorably sang an Irish ballad, Hyde went on to become a professor emeritus of communication studies at St. Cloud State in Minnesota. Read more about his life.

Cory Wells

February 5, 1941 – October 20, 2015

As one of the three lead vocalists in Three Dog Night, Wells appeared frequently on the radio and pop charts in the 1970s. He also had a career on television, appearing on The Beverly Hillbillies and being the first cohost of Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve.

Marty Ingels

March 9, 1936 – October 21, 2015

Ingels starred alongside John Astin on the sitcom I'm Dickens, He's Fenster. Oh, and he was the voice of Pac-Man!

Maureen O'Hara

August 17, 1920 – October 25, 2015

The Hollywood beauty starred in several films with John Wayne and became part of Christmas tradition as a lead in Miracle on 34th Street. Read more here.

Al Molinaro

June 24, 1919 – October 30, 2015

The character actor crafted two memorable characters as both Al Delvecchio on Happy Days and Murray Greshler on The Odd Couple. Read more about his life and career.

Fred Thompson

August 19, 1942 – November 1, 2015

Thompson was the perfect military man and authority figure in movies like The Hunt for Red October and on shows like Law & Order. It's no wonder he was a Senator for the state of Tennessee. 

George Barris

November 20, 1920 – November 5, 2015

The "Kustom Car King" designed the Batmobile on Batman and other gorgeous hot rods of the screen. He was even laid to rest in a Batmobile-inspired casket.

David Canary

August 25, 1938 – November 16, 2015

After playing Candy on Bonanza, Canary became a soap opera icon as Adam Chandler (and his twin, Stuart) on All My Children. Read more about Canary.

Jim Perry

November 9, 1933 – November 20, 2015

The game show hall of famer hosted Card Sharks and $ale of the Century. Read more about the presenter.

Marjorie Lord

July 26, 1918 – November 28, 2015

Lord was best known as Kathy O'Hara, Danny Thomas' second wife on Make Room for Daddy.

Robert Loggia

January 3, 1930 – December 4, 2015

The seasoned veteran made for a great gangster or father figure on the big screen. Loggia also logged several notable television roles. Check out 13 of his most memorable TV appearances.

  • Donna Douglas
  • Lesley Gore
  • Leonard Nimoy
  • James Best
  • Jayne Meadows Allen
  • Suzanne Crough
  • Grace Lee Whitney
  • B.B. King
  • Anne Meara
  • Christopher Lee
  • Dick Van Patten
  • Patrick Macnee
  • Omar Sharif
  • Roger Rees
  • Frank Gifford
  • Yvonne Craig
  • Wes Craven
  • Dean Jones
  • Judy Carne
  • Martin Milner
  • Jack Larson
  • Pat Woodell
  • Kevin Corcoran
  • Paul Prudhomme
  • Bruce Hyde
  • Cory Wells
  • Marty Ingels
  • Maureen O'Hara
  • Al Molinaro
  • Fred Thompson
  • George Barris
  • David Canary
  • Jim Perry
  • Marjorie Lord
  • Robert Loggia
  • Donna Douglas
  • Lesley Gore
  • Leonard Nimoy
  • James Best
  • Jayne Meadows Allen
  • Suzanne Crough
  • Grace Lee Whitney
  • B.B. King
  • Anne Meara
  • Christopher Lee
  • Dick Van Patten
  • Patrick Macnee
  • Omar Sharif
  • Roger Rees
  • Frank Gifford
  • Yvonne Craig
  • Wes Craven
  • Dean Jones
  • Judy Carne
  • Martin Milner
  • Jack Larson
  • Pat Woodell
  • Kevin Corcoran
  • Paul Prudhomme
  • Bruce Hyde
  • Cory Wells
  • Marty Ingels
  • Maureen O'Hara
  • Al Molinaro
  • Fred Thompson
  • George Barris
  • David Canary
  • Jim Perry
  • Marjorie Lord
  • Robert Loggia

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