In the 1980s MacGyver was the coolest guy on television. A government spy and a genius of all trades, the TV character became a household name. Richard Dean Anderson played the original MacGyver. The TV series of the same name hit the airwaves on ABC in 1985 and ran until 1992.
Anderson began his career on the daytime soap “General Hospital”, and starred on the show from 1976 to 1981. In other work, he joined the Stargate franchise and played on three of its films. His charity work has focused on environmental causes like clean water. He’s also been an active supporter of Challengers Boys and Girls Club. He received an award for his help with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Jerry Lee Lewis (born 1935)
Legendary singer-songwriter Jerry Lee Lewis pioneered rock and roll and played a mean piano. With tunes like 'Great Balls of Fire', Lewis became a household name worldwide. His career was burning hot, until his third marriage, to his 13-year-old cousin, doused the flames. The marriage lasted 13 years, with one son who drowned at age three.
In 1968, Lewis made a comeback as a country singer. It didn’t help his alcohol-induced health issues. His last album was released in 2014, called 'Rock and Roll Time'. And, in 2010 he released 'Mean Old Man'. He sadly passes away in October 2022.
Beverly Cleary (born 1916)
American author Beverly Cleary created the beloved character, Ramona Quimby. 'Ramona and Beezus' is a film adaptation featuring the character that fills so many of Cleary’s books. The movie adaptation came out in 2010. The author was born in a small Oregon town more than a century ago! As a child, she struggled with reading, but when a librarian directed her toward books she liked, she embarked on a life as a book lover.
Cleary aspired to be, and became, a children’s librarian. She later began to write stories that resonate better with average kids who aren’t perfect and are sometimes mischievous. Her children’s books won many awards, including the Newbery Medal and the National Book Award. She ended up sadly passing away in 2021.
Betty White (born 1922)
Betty White has charmed audiences her whole life. Her sweet and innocent demeanor is inevitably sliced by a laser-tongue remark that leaves people in hysterics. With a career spanning over 80 years, White has been recognized by many awards, but she is also part of television history. In the early 1950s, she became one of the first women producers.
The smash-hit "Golden Girls" became the most successful show White has starred in. Known for saying, “Retirement is not in my vocabulary,” she sure lives up to it. In 2010, at 88 years old, she hosted "SNL" and brought in the best ratings of the season as the oldest person ever to host the show. Yet, in December of 2021, she took her last breath. She's the type of person we will never forget.
Sir Sean Connery (born 1930)
Sir Sean Connery had humble beginnings as the son of a cleaned and a lorry driver from Edinburgh, Scotland. At 12 years old, Connery quit school to get a job as a milkman. By age 23, he was set to become a professional footballer or an actor. Obviously, he chose the latter.
After a handful of minor roles on British TV and film, Connery scored his big break as James Bond. His James Bond movies grossed $2.2 billion and gained him other roles in different blockbusters. In 2000, he was knighted for Services to Film Drama. With a career spanning more than six decades, Connery ultimately retired in 2012 and passed away in 2020 at 90 years old.