What a shocking and sad day America experienced yesterday. Farrah Fawcett lost her battle with cancer and the King of Pop died suddenly and mysteriously from a suspected cardiac arrest.
While we typically stick to books here, the passing of such legends, along with the recent passing of Johnny Carson's Tonight Show sidekick Ed McMahon, cannot go unacknowledged.
While I was a bit young to watch the Tonight Show, everyone knew about Johnny Carson and the famous "H-e-r-r-r-r-r-e's Johnny!" line that McMahon delivered each night. McMahon had his own turn in the spotlight when he hosted Star Search in the 1980's, many years before American Idol and America's Got Talent made their way on the scene.
In the last few years of his life, McMahon had been plagued by health issues and financial woes, but I'm sure America will always remember the wonderful second fiddle who delivered his serious lines and still got laughs.
Farrah Fawcett became a household name when she starred in the first season of Charlie's Angels as Jill Munroe, one of the three crime-fighting beauties who worked for the mysterious and never seen Charlie, voiced by John Forsythe. Along with Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith, Farrah heated up the TV screen each week and became a sex symbol.
Leaving after one season, Farrah took on many dramatic roles after Charlie's Angels, the most famous of which was The Burning Bed, a movie about domestic violence.
Farrah's long and brave battle with cancer was recently highlighted in the documentary, Farrah's Story. Her longtime companion, Ryan O'Neal had intended to marry the actress as soon as she was up to it.
Farrah Fawcett was an amazing actress and an inspiration to those fighting life-threatening illnesses. While we rejoice that she no longer suffers the ravages of a dreaded disease, we mourn the loss of a brave and beautiful woman.
Perhaps the saddest news this week was the sudden and unexpected passing of Michael Jackson who was poised for a comeback when he died of an assumed cardiac arrest.
Even at a young age, you knew that Michael Jackson was destined to be a star. The Jackson 5, a group formed with Michael's four brothers, were a huge pop music phenomenon in the 70's, which led to solo careers for Jermaine and Michael.
Michael's solo career included huge hits like Thriller, Billie Jean, and Beat It. His unique fashion sense and ground-breaking videos inspired future generations of music artists. He crossed racial barriers, collaborating with Paul McCartney on Say, Say, Say and The Girl is Mine, and encouraged change with songs like Man in the Mirror.
While his personal life was plagued by many hardships the past several years, Michael was planning a comeback tour in London at the time of his death.
No one can deny his influence on the music industry or Jackson's level of talent. As Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman, CEO and President, Sony Corporation, said, "Michael Jackson was a brilliant troubadour for his generation, a genius whose music reflected the passion and creativity of an era. His artistry and magnetism changed the music landscape forever. We have been profoundly affected by his originality, creativity and amazing body of work..."
May all these icons of various generations rest in peace!