Despite the fact that Al had been ailing for months with lung cancer, his death came as a surprise. He'd been a staple of the literary landscape for so long—ever since The Cariboo Horses won the first of his two Governor General's Awards in 1965--that his constant stream of poetry appeared set to continue indefinitely.
But despite his lengthy career and widespread recognition, there was very little known about Al Purdy's medical history. We do know that he was diagnosed with cancer of the lungs in early 2001 and given six months to live. He apparently never recovered from this initial illness and was back on tour with his poetry collection In Trouble Again when he died on August 5th, 2003. At the time of his death, he was still working on a new collection of poems.
Al Purdy was a true Canadian poet. A native of Northern Ontario, he spent most of his life living in or around Toronto. For many years, he worked as a copy editor at the CBC radio network but he also wrote freelance articles and reviews for a number of publications including The Globe and Mail and The National Post. His work has been published in several collections over the course of his career and has won him several awards including the 2002 Rea Award for Literary Merit in Poetry from the Royal Society of Canada.
Edward Elgar died on February 23, 1934, as a result of colon cancer complications. He is recognized as one of the finest English composers of all time in English history. Many of his compositions are part of the international classical music repertory.
He was born on April 20, 1857, in London, the only child of Charles Elgar and Louisa Elgar (née Broadwood). His father was a well-to-do brewer who owned the famous Blackheath Proprietary brewery, and his mother was from a wealthy family of piano makers. When Edward was nine years old, his family moved to Worcester where his father had an opportunity to work with John Hill Billson, the principal organ builder at that time. This experience would help Edward develop a love for music that he never lost throughout his life.
As a young man, he wanted to become an artist so he could travel around Europe looking at architecture and music. But his father wanted him to go into business so he sent Edward to Cambridge University to study mathematics. While there, he also started taking piano lessons from a professor who encouraged him to pursue a career in music. After graduating in 1880, he went to Paris where he planned to live for several years to improve his art skills. However, due to illness, he was unable to leave France until 1884 when he traveled back to England.
Kidney cancer is fatal. He died on September 19, 2003, at the age of 76, at his home in St Ives, New South Wales, following a long fight with lung and kidney cancer.
Dusty's death was announced by his manager, Tony Mitchell, who also revealed that the singer had been diagnosed with kidney cancer two years earlier.
He said at the time: "Slim has died. This is probably why they call it life. It takes them from us very quickly."
Dusty was born on January 4, 1939, in Sydney, New South Wales, to Greek immigrant parents who ran a grocery store. He showed an interest in music from an early age and taught himself how to play the guitar. In order to pay for his bus fares to travel to music festivals, he worked as a roadie for various popular Australian artists of the time such as Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, and Buddy Holly.
His big break came when Johnny Cash heard him play at a concert and asked him to join him on tour. After the end of that tour, he started his own band with some friends and they played clubs around Sydney. They soon became popular and made several trips to London where they met with other musicians and singers and learned more about music.
Tork died of unknown causes, however he had been diagnosed with a rare form of tongue cancer in 2009. Adenoid cystic carcinoma is a kind of aggressive cancer that most usually affects the salivary glands. It is commonly found in people who are between 40 and 60 years old. Although it can occur elsewhere in the body, such as the lungs, breast, prostate, ovaries, brain, and colon, adenoid cystic carcinoma is more common in the head and neck region.
In addition to Tork, other Muppets who have died include Mary Jane Croft (1971), who worked on The Muppet Show and performed with the group until her death from stomach cancer, and Caroll Spinney (2011), who played Gonzo the Great and other Muppets.
Spinney passed away due to heart failure caused by pneumonia. He was 77 years old.
Tork's cancer was also responsible for his retirement from performing with the Muppets. After several months of treatment, he decided to quit performing because he didn't want to jeopardize the ability of the Muppets to continue without him. In February 2010, just over a year after his diagnosis, Tork announced his retirement from the Muppets to various media outlets.
Dunstan suffered from sickness in his latter years. He was diagnosed with throat cancer in 1993 before being diagnosed with incurable lung cancer on February 6, 1999. On February 9, a public memorial ceremony was conducted at the Adelaide Festival Centre to honor Dunstan's passion of the arts. Approximately 5,000 people attended the event which included performances by opera singers, musicians, dancers, and actors.
Don Dunstan was one of Australia's most beloved artists. He was an influential force in bringing contemporary art to South Australia and creating opportunities for young artists. At the time of his death, he was working on a new project called "The Natural Order" which aimed to demonstrate that beauty is found everywhere if you look hard enough.
He received many accolades for his work including two ARIA Music Awards, three Deadlys, a National Art Award, and a Prince Charles Prize. In 2001, he was made a Member of the Order of Australia for his contributions to music education in South Australia.
Don Dunstan was born on January 4, 1945 in Melbourne, Victoria. His parents were Greek immigrants who worked as cooks and servants to make a living. When he was nine years old, the family moved to Woodside, a south side suburb of Adelaide. There, he began taking piano lessons from Mrs. Mary McArthur who became a significant influence in his life. She taught him how to play jazz songs when he was only 11 years old.
Landon died of pancreatic cancer on July 1, 1991, at the age of 54, only months after being diagnosed. Doctors swiftly put Landon on a treatment plan that includes chemotherapy treatments after obtaining the diagnosis.
Pancreatic cancer is one of the most deadly forms of cancer due to its tendency to spread rapidly and be resistant to treatment. Effective treatments for this type of cancer have improved over the years, but the five-year survival rate remains below 8%.
Landon was born on March 24, 1949 in New York City. He received his early education in Greenwich, Connecticut before moving with his family to Pacific Palisades, California when he was 10 years old. It was there that he began modeling at the age of 12. Over the next few years, he appeared in more than 100 magazine covers including Vogue, Glamour, and Harper's Bazaar.
He started working with major fashion brands such as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, and Chanel before becoming one of the faces of American Apparel in the 1980s. In 1990, Landon co-founded LAXAR Media, a luxury goods company.
On May 5, 1969, Landon McCoart married Anne Marie Taylor in a Catholic ceremony in Los Angeles.