Norman “Turkey” Stearnes

Posted in Lincoln Memorial Park with tags , , on November 14, 2022 by Cade

May 8, 1901 – September 4, 1979

“If they don’t put Turkey Stearnes in the Hall of Fame, they shouldn’t put anybody in!”James “Cool Papa” Bell

Norman Stearnes was a Hall of Fame baseball player who played the entirety of his 19-year career in the Negro Leagues. Nicknamed “Turkey” from the unconventional way he ran, he was a 5x All-Star and 2x league batting champion. He was predominantly a utility outfielder – playing mostly in left field – but was praised for his versatility and speed at other positions as well.

Continue reading

Elaine Stritch

Posted in Memorial Park Cemetery (IL) with tags , on November 7, 2022 by Cade

February 2, 1925 – July 17, 2014

Widely considered one of the greatest performers in Broadway history, Elaine Stritch spent more than six decades on stages all around the world. She appeared in early classics like Pal Joey and William Inge’s Bus Stop, but found a major breakthrough in 1961 with her groundbreaking performance in Sail Away by Noël Coward. In 1970, she appeared in the original production of Stephen Sondheim’s masterpiece Company, in which she originated the now-classic “The Ladies Who Lunch” which would become one of her signature songs. She was nominated for 5 Tony Awards throughout her career, winning once.

Continue reading

Uriel Jones

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , , , on October 31, 2022 by Cade

June 13, 1934 – March 24, 2009

As a drummer for the legendary house band, the Funk Brothers, Uriel Jones played on many of Motown Records’ biggest hits of the 1960s. From “Ain’t to Proud to Beg” and “I Can’t Get Next to You” by the Temptations, to Stevie Wonder’s “For Once in My Life”, Jones’ smooth and funky rhythm came to be a staple in the exploding R&B scene out of Detroit.

Continue reading

Ed Asner

Posted in Sheffield Cemetery with tags , , on October 24, 2022 by Cade

November 15, 1929 – August 29, 2021

For 12 years, American TV audiences tuned in by the millions to delight in and be entertained by the curmudgeonly but loveable character, Lou Grant. Grant first appeared in the all-time classic sitcom The Mary Tyler Moore Show and was then given his own spin-off fittingly entitled Lou Grant. Ed Asner became a household name with his portrayal of the gruff but ultimately caring Grant. He won 5 of his 7 Emmy awards for the role, spanning both series. And he is one of only two actors to win Emmys for the SAME role in both a comedy and a drama.

Continue reading

DeShaun “Proof” Holton

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , on October 17, 2022 by Cade

October 2, 1973 – April 11, 2006

DeShaun Holton was a Detroit-based rapper who grew to prominence in the 1990s and early 2000s. Under the performing name “Proof,” Holton formed a collective of local hip-hop artists in 1996 called D12. The group contained, at various times, other Detroit contemporaries like Eminem, Denaun and Bizarre among others. Proof and Eminem were close childhood friends and supported each other throughout their careers. Proof toured with Eminem and served as the latter’s hype man in concerts. He also appeared in Eminem’s critically-acclaimed 2002 motion picture, 8 Mile. D12 released two albums and a number of hit singles. As a solo artist, Proof released two EPs and two full-length studio albums spawning singles like “Trapped” and “Kurt Kobain”…which leaned heavily on prescient thoughts of his own death and legacy.

Continue reading

Susie Garrett

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , on October 10, 2022 by Cade

December 29, 1929 – May 24, 2002

Susie Garrett was an actress and singer who grew up singing in jazz clubs in Detroit. In addition to singing, she enjoyed acting and appeared in a number of plays. By the 1980’s Susie’s younger sister, Marla Gibbs, had forged a career in television and was co-starring on the hit CBS sitcom, The Jeffersons. Garrett made a couple of walk-on appearances on the show and, in 1984, was offered a featured role on the new NBC show Punky Brewster.

Continue reading

Pervis Jackson

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , , , on October 3, 2022 by Cade

May 17, 1938 – August 18, 2008

For more than half a century, Pervis Jackson was the swagger-filled bass voice of the hugely successful R&B group, the Spinners. Jackson was a founding member of the group along with fellow long-time Spinners Billy Henderson, Henry Fambrough and Bobbie Smith. Originally based in Detroit, the Spinners signed with Motown Records in 1963, but only found moderate success. Encouraged by another Detroit artist that was experiencing great success, Aretha Franklin, the group let their Motown contract end and signed with Atlantic Records.

Continue reading

Ronnie White

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , , , on September 26, 2022 by Cade

April 5, 1939 – August 26, 1995

As a founding member of the first successful group at Motown Records, Ronald “Ronnie” White’s place in American music history was solidified early on, even if he didn’t always get the recognition. In 1955, White – along with childhood friend, William “Smokey” Robinson – formed the vocal group that would eventually become the Miracles. When Berry Gordy was founding Tamla records in Detroit, the Miracles auditioned for him having found little interest from other labels. Gordy signed the group to the label that became Motown. The Miracles had their first hit with 1960’s “Shop Around.”

Continue reading

Harold Ramis

Posted in Shalom Memorial Park with tags , , , on September 19, 2022 by Cade

November 21, 1944 – February 24, 2014

Every so often, I come across a post that I dread writing. Usually it’s because it features the life – and death, naturally – of someone I regard very highly. This is one of those posts. At any given moment, if you ask me what my favorite movie is, somewhere north of 2/3 of the time my answer will be the 1984 classic Ghostbusters. The characters in that movie were giants to me as a kid and Egon Spengler was always, always my favorite. Egon was, of course, played by legendary actor/writer/director Harold Ramis…who also wrote the movie.

Continue reading

Rosa Parks

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (MI) with tags , on September 12, 2022 by Cade

parks2
February 4, 1913 – October 24, 2005

As a little girl in Jim Crow-era Alabama, Rosa McCauley had to walk to school while busses filled with White students in her community passed by. Busses, she later said, were one of the most visible ways she “realized there was a Black world and a White world.” Some years later, it was another bus that would make Rosa a quintessential symbol of the American Civil Rights movement.

Continue reading