Danny Sims 1936 to four weeks ago Wednesday
In 1968, Sims heard the next Bob Dylan. He was down in Jamaica at a Rastafarian festival when he “was impressed by a young singer named Bob Marley.” He hired him to write songs for Johnny Nash but Reggae wasn’t in style (Nash would go on to record ‘I Can See Clearly Now’, without the help of Marley). Sims dropped Marley, but Island Records picked him up. There, Marley and his Wailers recorded Exodus, one of the all-time great albums. It’s been blasting out of sketchy freshman dormitories ever since. Sims leaves behind this immortal quote: “I discouraged Bob from doing the revolutionary stuff. I’m a commercial guy. I want to sell songs to 13-year-old girls, not to guys throwing spears.”
Carroll Frye Johnson 1913 to four weeks ago Monday
Johnson “was one of the first superintendents to voluntarily use busing to integrate” a school district. His teaching career started in 1941 when he taught U.S. Navy recruits to swim safely under burning fuel (see page 75)–one of the few practices more fraught than seeking racial equality in White Plains, New York in 1964. He leaves behind increased test scores for black students; the southern drawl that endeared him to the PTA; and, as one long-time White Plains resident put it, fairness, objectivity, considerable administrative competence, dignity and unmistakable humanity.
Keith Campbell 1954 to four weeks ago Friday
Campbell cloned Dolly and propelled her to most-famous-sheep-of-all-time status. He leaves behind jaw-dropped scientists who believed cloning lives cells was impossible and job security for the bioethicists who now must navigate dozens of unanticipated science-fiction-like dilemmas (e.g., “So, it’s cool if I clone myself to score some spare organs, right?”).
Lynn Hudson 1963 to 3 months ago Thursday
Haven’t heard of her? You must not be a fan of RHOBH–or, to the uninitiated, the Bravo television hit Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Lynn was a property manager by day but a blogger at night who tallied more than 10,000 daily hits on her chronicle of the five different editions of the Real Housewives shows (NY, NJ, BH, Atlanta and Miami for those of you keeping score at home). But hers was more than a blog–it was a community. Said her (jealous?) sister: “[Lynn] would know when [one of her hundreds of blog commenters] were sick, if they had a sick dog, if they lost a loved one. They were like her second family.” She leaves behind this second family of voyeurs.
Detroit Tigers Season 2012 to Saturday
Ouch. The Tigers leave behind a measly six runs in what was the least-watched World Series ever. Ouch.