telegraphobits

115 Flips | 9 Magazines | 11 Followers | @telegraphobits | The lives and deaths, careers, crimes and foibles of the good, the bad, the famous and infamous from the Telegraph Obituaries desk

John Tyson - obituary

John Tyson was an explorer who mapped the Kanjiroba Himal, won an MC in Malaya and ran a school in Nepal<p>John Tyson, who has died aged 85, was a modest English schoolmaster who made it his personal mission to map the Kanjiroba Himal, a remote group of mountain peaks in north-west Nepal — among the …

Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman

Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman was a Tory MP who made a multifaceted career despite setbacks that would have crushed many others<p>Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman, who has died aged 90, crammed even more careers into her lifetime than her Oxford contemporary Margaret Thatcher, whom she supported with gusto …

Colonel Tresham Gregg - obituary

Colonel Tresham Gregg was a serial escaper who posed as a member of the Hitler Youth and led a brigade of Italian partisans<p>Colonel Tresham Gregg, who has died aged 94, had an adventurous Army career as a leader of wartime Italian partisans, having already acquired a reputation as a serial escaper …

L'Wren Scott - obituary

L’Wren Scott was a model, designer and girlfriend of Mick Jagger who was not always at ease in the celebrity world she inhabited<p>L’Wren Scott, who has been found dead aged 49, seemed almost predestined by her astonishing physique to be a model, fashion designer, stylist and, eventually, the longtime …

Nigel Groom - obituary

Nigel Groom was a spy-catcher, soldier and scent expert who faced assassination in Aden and smelt a rat in the RAF<p>Nigel Groom, who has died aged 89, was an Arabist, historian, author, soldier, spy-catcher and perfume connoisseur. These pursuits saw him fend off a tribal assassination attempt in …

Bob Millard - obituary

Bob Millard was a Member of Churchill’s secret British 'Resistance' which was primed for action when Hitler invaded<p>Bob Millard, who has died aged 91, was a teenager in the Home Guard in 1940 when he was approached by a friend and asked if he wanted to join “something a bit more interesting”; the …

Kate O'Mara - obituary

Kate O'Mara was an actress who delighted 'Dynasty' audiences with her glowering showdowns with Joan Collins<p>Kate O'Mara, who has died aged 74, was an actress whose cliff-high cheek bones, brooding glare and nifty line in tough talk fuelled a successful international television career. She first came …

Anthony Neil Wedgwood Benn - obituary

A boyish enthusiast recognisable by his pipe, tape recorder and outsized mug of tea, he aroused greater emotions than any contemporary bar Enoch Powell and Margaret Thatcher<p>Tony Benn who has died aged 88, was Labour’s most controversial late 20th-century figure, leading the Leftward drive that …

Marion Thorpe - obituary

Marion Thorpe was a concert pianist whose life was defined by her two marriages: one Royal, one to Jeremy Thorpe<p>Marion Thorpe, who has died aged 87, was a concert pianist and co-founder of the Leeds International Piano Competition, and destined for a brilliant career on the concert circuit; instead …

Bob Crow - obituary

Bob Crow was the belligerent RMT leader whose tough tactics were loved by union members but hated by commuters<p>Bob Crow, who has died aged 52, reportedly of a heart attack, was for more than a decade the uncompromisingly militant leader of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers …

Clarissa Dickson Wright - obituary

Clarissa Dickson Wright was a bombastic, outspoken lawyer brought to her knees by riches and alcoholism who rose again on the TV series Two Fat Ladies<p>Clarissa Dickson Wright, who has died aged 66, sprang to celebrity as the larger of the Two Fat Ladies in the astonishingly popular television series.<p>…

Maria von Trapp - obituary

Maria von Trapp, who was the last surviving member of the Trapp Family Singers, learnt to live with The Sound of Music<p>Maria von Trapp, who has died aged 99, was the last of the original Trapp Family Singers, whose story of musical success and subsequent flight from Austria during the Nazi regime in …

Sir Tom Finney - obituary

Sir Tom Finney was one of England's greatest footballers and won countless fans with his skill and sportsmanship<p>Sir Tom Finney, the footballer, who has died aged 91, was rivalled in the English game only by Sir Bobby Charlton and Sir Stanley Matthews; some, like Bill Shankly, rated him the greatest …

Alice Herz-Sommer - obituary

Alice Herz-Sommer was a concert pianist whose musical talent and cheery optimism saved her from death in the Holocaust<p>Alice Herz-Sommer, who has died aged 110, was a pianist whose unending optimism came to symbolise the triumph of good over evil. She survived two years in Terezín, the “model” …

Samantha Juste - obituary

Samantha Juste was a Top of the Pops hostess who swung the stylus with style and married a Monkee<p>Samantha Juste, who has died aged 69 following a stroke, will be remembered by readers of a certain age as the “disc girl” who applied needle to record on early broadcasts of Top of the Pops.<p>The first …

Andrew Stuart - obituary

Andrew Stuart was a diplomat who took on – and beat – the French in the 'Coconut War’ on Vanuatu in the South Pacific<p>Andrew Stuart, who has died aged 85, oversaw the fraught transfer to independence of the New Hebrides (now Vanuatu) during the so-called “Coconut War” with France; he also had long …

Ian McNaught-Davis - obituary

Ian McNaught-Davis was a mountaineer and BBC presenter whose greatest feat was explaining home computing in the 1980s<p>Ian McNaught-Davis, who has died aged 84, was a BBC presenter with a passion for climbing and computers.<p>He first came to public prominence in 1967 as one of the climbers on the BBC’s …

Susan Hillyard - obituary

Susan Hillyard was an oil executive’s wife whose make-do-and-mend optimism won over Abu Dhabi’s royal family<p>Susan Hillyard, who has died aged 87, was the “First Lady” of the lost world of Abu Dhabi’s expat community before oil changed the region for ever; when she arrived in 1954, most of the …

Maximilian Schell - obituary

Maximilian Schell was an Oscar-winning actor whose Teutonic intellect made him one of Hollywood’s best-loved foreign stars<p>Maximilian Schell, the actor, who has died aged 83, was – with Maurice Chevalier and Marcello Mastroianni – widely recognised as one of the most successful non-anglophone …

Major-General Logan Scott-Bowden - obituary

Major-General Logan Scott-Bowden was a sapper who carried out daring missions to ensure the Normandy beaches were ready for D-Day<p>Major-General Logan Scott-Bowden, who has died aged 93, carried out secret reconnaissance missions to the Normandy beaches which paved the way for the D-Day …

Shirley Temple - obituary

Shirley Temple was film's most popular child star, with ringlets and dimples that dazzled audiences and studios alike<p>Shirley Temple, who has died aged 85, was the screen’s most popular child star of the 1930s, receiving at the age of eight 135,000 birthday gifts from fans the world over.<p>Throughout …

Philip Seymour Hoffman - obituary

Philip Seymour Hoffman was an Academy Award winner considered by many to be the greatest character actor of his age<p><b>Philip Seymour Hoffman</b>, who has died aged 46, was an actor of immense range, whose bulky physique belied a cinematic presence infused with subtlety and grace.<p>In a little over two …

Stuart Hall - obituary

Stuart Hall was a cultural theorist who coined the term 'Thatcherism’ and profoundly influenced New Labour<p>Stuart Hall, who has died aged 82, came to Britain from his native Jamaica in 1951 and established himself as a leading cultural theorist and as a hero of the intellectual Left.<p>A trenchant …

Marina Ginestà - obituary

Marina Ginestà was a mysterious beauty photographed during the Spanish Civil War who was identified exactly 70 years later<p>Marina Ginestà, who has died aged 94, was believed to have been the last surviving French veteran of the Spanish Civil War. As a 17-year-old member of Spain’s Unified Socialist …

Claudio Abbado - obituary

Claudio Abbado was a shy but steely conductor who crafted some of the great performances of the last century<p>Claudio Abbado, the Italian conductor, who has died aged 80, held four of the top musical posts in Europe: La Scala Milan, the London Symphony Orchestra, Vienna State Opera and the Berlin …

Group Captain Ronnie Churcher - obituary

Group Captain Ronnie Churcher was deputy to Guy Gibson, hero of the Dam Buster raid, on the fateful mission in which Gibson was killed<p>Group Captain Ronnie Churcher, who has died aged 91, flew as deputy controller to Wing Commander Guy Gibson, VC, on the raid in which the hero of the Dam Busters’ …

The Deadline - obits podcast

This week on The Deadline, RAF Air Commodore Graham Pitchfork and acclaimed author Patrick Bishop discuss the astonishing, controversial life - and very mysterious death - of the Dam Busters hero Guy Gibson, VC, all through the eyes of Group Captain Ronnie Churcher, who was with Gibson on the …

Introducing the Telegraph Obits podcast

A word in your ear? More like a whole life. Welcome to the Telegraph Obits podcast. This week focussing on Claudio Abbado<p>Anyone who reads Telegraph obituaries will know the wonderful assortment of characters we write about – the military heroes, the musical maestros, the eccentric aristocrats, the …

Ariel Sharon - obituary

Ariel Sharon was an Israeli leader famed for bold, brash, ruthless manoeuvres both in politics and on the battlefield<p>Ariel Sharon, who has died aged 85, was Prime Minister of Israel from March 2001 and one of the Middle East’s most formidable politicians.<p>Always controversial, Sharon’s skill and …

Simon Hoggart - obituary

Simon Hoggart was a witty parliamentary sketchwriter and Spectator wine correspondent who chaired the BBC’s News Quiz<p>Simon Hoggart, the journalist who has died aged 67, wrote on politics, latterly as The Guardian’s acerbic and witty parliamentary sketchwriter, and on wine for The Spectator; for …