James Whitmore, 87, died on February 6th at his Malibu, CA home. The actor was diagnosed with lung cancer in November 2008. Whitmore had a long list of movie and Broadway credits but also guested on TV shows like The Practice, The White Shadow, Gunsmoke, The Big Valley, and most recently, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. He was married several times, including a seven year marriage to actress Audra Lindley (Mrs. Roper on Three’s Company). Whitmore was also the grandfather of recent Survivor contestant, Matty Whitmore.
Phil Carey, 83, passed away on February 6th at his home in New York. The actor had also been battling lung cancer. He was best known for playing business tycoon Asa Buchanan on ABC’s One Life to Live soap opera for almost 30 years. A veteran of many movies, Carey also appeared on classic shows like All in the Family, Little House on the Prairie, The Bionic Woman, and Gunsmoke.
Blossom Dearie, 84, died of natural causes on February 9th at her Manhattan home. She was a classically trained pianist who became a jazz-singer, known for her unique baby-doll voice. She gained national attention by appearing on the Today Show in its early years but her voice became recognizable to Saturday morning viewers in the 1970s. Dearie’s voice can be heard on Schoolhouse Rock! shorts, most notably the “Mother Necessity,” “Figure Eight” and “Unpack Your Adjectives” installments.
Ed Cotter, an Emmy Award-winning film editor, passed away in Torrance, CA on February 16th. He was 80 years old. Cotter began his career as a theater actor and director and later apprenticed as an editor at Paramount. He edited Happy Days for more than nine years and also worked on shows like Laverne & Shirley, Dear John, and Family Matters. He later became a film librarian for Paramount and continued to work in theater.