29 Notes

Obit of the Day: The Oldest Living Major League Baseball Player
Conrado “Connie” Marrero played all of five seasons of major league baseball. Pitching for the woeful Washington Senators, Mr. Marrero compiled a 39-40 career won-loss record, but earned a spot on the 1951 American League All-Star team and even a 1952 MVP vote.
Unusual for baseball, Mr. Marrero was a 39-year-old rookie in 1950 having coming up from the Havana Cubans where he won the Florida International League MVP going 25-8 and pitching a league-record 44 scoreless innings.
He was proud of his rural upbringing and was nicknamed “El Guajiro de Laberinto,” “The Peasant from Leberinto” during his years playing in Cuban amateur and professional leagues. Squat, stading at only five feet, five inches tall and weighing 158 pounds, Mr. Marrero was known for his mix of sliders and curves.
Mr. Marrero’s major league career ended after the 1954 season when he was the oldest active player at age 43. He returned to Cuba where he managed the Havana Sugar Kings of the Cuban League. When Fidel Castro took control in 1959, Mr. Marrero remained in Cuba and lived out the remainder of his life there. 
In 1999 when the Baltimore Orioles came to Cuba for an exhibition series against the Cuban national team, Mr. Marrero threw out the first pitch. 
Conrado Marrero died on April 23, 2014 at the age of 102 - two days shy of his 103rd birthday. Upon Mr. Marrero’s death, veteran infielder Mike Sandlock is now the oldest living ex-major leaguer at 98.
Sources: CBSSports.com, Wikipedia, and Baseball-Reference.com
(Image 1953 Topps card of Conrado “Connie” Marrero is copyright of Topps, Inc. and courtesy of goldenagebaseballcards.com)

Obit of the Day: The Oldest Living Major League Baseball Player

Conrado “Connie” Marrero played all of five seasons of major league baseball. Pitching for the woeful Washington Senators, Mr. Marrero compiled a 39-40 career won-loss record, but earned a spot on the 1951 American League All-Star team and even a 1952 MVP vote.

Unusual for baseball, Mr. Marrero was a 39-year-old rookie in 1950 having coming up from the Havana Cubans where he won the Florida International League MVP going 25-8 and pitching a league-record 44 scoreless innings.

He was proud of his rural upbringing and was nicknamed “El Guajiro de Laberinto,” “The Peasant from Leberinto” during his years playing in Cuban amateur and professional leagues. Squat, stading at only five feet, five inches tall and weighing 158 pounds, Mr. Marrero was known for his mix of sliders and curves.

Mr. Marrero’s major league career ended after the 1954 season when he was the oldest active player at age 43. He returned to Cuba where he managed the Havana Sugar Kings of the Cuban League. When Fidel Castro took control in 1959, Mr. Marrero remained in Cuba and lived out the remainder of his life there. 

In 1999 when the Baltimore Orioles came to Cuba for an exhibition series against the Cuban national team, Mr. Marrero threw out the first pitch. 

Conrado Marrero died on April 23, 2014 at the age of 102 - two days shy of his 103rd birthday. Upon Mr. Marrero’s death, veteran infielder Mike Sandlock is now the oldest living ex-major leaguer at 98.

Sources: CBSSports.com, Wikipedia, and Baseball-Reference.com

(Image 1953 Topps card of Conrado “Connie” Marrero is copyright of Topps, Inc. and courtesy of goldenagebaseballcards.com)

196 Notes

obitoftheday:

Obit of the Day: Dead Together

April 23, 1616

Miguel de Cervantes - The author of Don Quixote wrote a total of five novels between 1585 and 1616. (His final novel Persiles was published posthumously.) Cervantes is considered the father of the modern European novel and is considered as influential on the Spanish language as his partner in death is on the English language. Interesting fact: Cervantes and his brother, Roderigo, were captured by Barbary pirates in 1575 and lived in slavery for five years.

William Shakespeare - Outside of the King James Bible, no one has added more to English idiom than William Shakespeare. Interesting fact: The plays performed during the time Don Quixote was published were Measure for MeasureOthelloKing Lear, and Macbeth.

Random note 1: April 23 is International Day of the Book in honor of the passing of Cervantes and Shakespeare by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). 

Random Note 2: Although the men both died on April 23, 1616, Miguel de Cervantes died eleven days before William Shakespeare. Spain, a Catholic country, had converted to the Gregorian calendar (introduced by Pope Gregory XIII) in September 1582. The solar calendar was much more accurate than the Julian calendar (named for Julius Caesar who introduced it to the Romans), a lunar calendar. However, England did not convert to the Gregorian system until 1752. And you think time zones are confusing.

Sources: www.shakespeare-online.com, manoflabook.com, and Wikipedia

Images:

Left, Portrait of Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra commonly said to be that which, according to the prologue to Cervantes’ Exemplary Novels was painted by Juan de Jáuregui. Scholars do not believe there are any portraits of Cervantes from his lifetime.

Right, This was long thought to be the only portrait of William Shakespeare that had any claim to have been painted from life, until another possible life portrait, the Cobbe portrait, was revealed in 2009. The portrait is known as the ‘Chandos portrait’ after a previous owner, James Brydges, 1st Duke of Chandos. It was the first portrait to be acquired by the National Portrait Gallery in 1856. Dated to 1610 the artist may have been John Taylor a member of the London Painters’-Stainers’ Company.

Courtesy of Wikimedia

More Dead Together

Just a reminder that it’s not only Shakespeare’s birthday (based on subtracting three days from his baptism on April 26, 1564) but it’s his death date as well. (And also Cervantes who I threw in for free.)

103 Notes

Obit of the Day (Historical): William Hartnell (1975)
When William Hartnell was approached by Verity Lambert, the first female producer for the BBC, to take on the role of an alient time traveler for a new science fiction show, he was wary. He considered himself a serious actor and the idea of taking on an unknown role in a show aimed at families and children could have ended his career. But the idea that his two granddaughters would watch him star in the new endeavor outweighed his concerns.
On November 23, 1963, Mr. Hartnell made his first television appearance as Doctor Who in an episode titled “An Unearthly Child.” The show was an immediate success and Mr. Hartnell starred as the Doctor for four seasons. During his tenure, Mr. Hartnell starred in 136 episodes.
It was a long road for Mr. Hartnell to travel. Born to a single mother in 1908, Mr. Hartnell never knew his father. Embarrassed by his upbringing and bullied constantly as a child for being “illegitimate,” he would later make up stories about a father he never knew. He grew up shuttled to different homes as his mother tried to find work, including traveling to Belgium to work as a nurse. Mr. Hartnell even took to shoplifting.
His life changed forever when he was taken in by Hugh Blakner, an artist and philanthropist, who paid for the young Hartnell’s education first as a jockey and then, more significantly, as an actor.
As a teenager he joined a Shakespearean company and worked his way up from stagehand to performer. By the 1930s Mr. Hartnell had found his way into the British film industry making his first on-screen appearance in the 1932 film Say It With Music.
For the next forty years, Mr. Hartnell made numerous appearances in film and television as a supporting player. He is best known, outside of The Doctor, for his role as CSM Bullisom in the BBC comedy The Army Game (1957-1960).But he was noticed for the first time by Ms. Lambert for his portrayal of a rugby coach in the film This Sporting Life (1963).
Mr. Hartnell’s health ended his career as the Doctor. He had developed ateriosclerosis which was effecting him performance physically and mentally. It was at this time that the producers created the idea of “regeneration” which allowed the character to change appearance and personality. This allows different actors to play the role while maintaining continuity. (How James Bond is a more traditional example of changing actors for a role.) Mr Hartnell himself recommended his replacement, Patrick Troughton. The transition from the first to the second Doctor took place on October 29, 1966.
Mr. Hartnell made a few television appearances after leaving Doctor Who but his health limited his performances. Even for The Three Doctors, a 10th anniversary reunion serial, the writers promised his wife Heather* that Mr. Hartnell would sit for most of his time on-screen and read his lines from cue cards.
William Hartnell, the first Doctor, died on April 23, 1975 at the age of 67.
Sources: The Daily Mirror, Wikipedia, and IMDB.com
(Image of Mr. Harnell as Doctor Who during filming in the 1965 serial The Web Planet. It is copyright of BBC and courtesy of neitshade5.wordpress.com)
* The Hartnells married in 1929. And Mr, Hartnell treated her terribly. As told in his biography Who’s There?: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, which was written by his grandddaughter Jessica Carney, Mr. Hartnell was a known womanizer and Mrs. Hartnell tried on several occasions to obtain a divorce. They never separated and were married until he died - 46 years.
Other Doctor Who posts on Obit of the Day:
Caroline John - played “Liz” Shaw, companion of the third Doctor
Raymond Cusick - Creator of the Daleks
Nicholas Courtney - Col. Lethbridge-Stewart
Elisabeth Sladen - Sarah Jane Smith

Obit of the Day (Historical): William Hartnell (1975)

When William Hartnell was approached by Verity Lambert, the first female producer for the BBC, to take on the role of an alient time traveler for a new science fiction show, he was wary. He considered himself a serious actor and the idea of taking on an unknown role in a show aimed at families and children could have ended his career. But the idea that his two granddaughters would watch him star in the new endeavor outweighed his concerns.

On November 23, 1963, Mr. Hartnell made his first television appearance as Doctor Who in an episode titled “An Unearthly Child.” The show was an immediate success and Mr. Hartnell starred as the Doctor for four seasons. During his tenure, Mr. Hartnell starred in 136 episodes.

It was a long road for Mr. Hartnell to travel. Born to a single mother in 1908, Mr. Hartnell never knew his father. Embarrassed by his upbringing and bullied constantly as a child for being “illegitimate,” he would later make up stories about a father he never knew. He grew up shuttled to different homes as his mother tried to find work, including traveling to Belgium to work as a nurse. Mr. Hartnell even took to shoplifting.

His life changed forever when he was taken in by Hugh Blakner, an artist and philanthropist, who paid for the young Hartnell’s education first as a jockey and then, more significantly, as an actor.

As a teenager he joined a Shakespearean company and worked his way up from stagehand to performer. By the 1930s Mr. Hartnell had found his way into the British film industry making his first on-screen appearance in the 1932 film Say It With Music.

For the next forty years, Mr. Hartnell made numerous appearances in film and television as a supporting player. He is best known, outside of The Doctor, for his role as CSM Bullisom in the BBC comedy The Army Game (1957-1960).But he was noticed for the first time by Ms. Lambert for his portrayal of a rugby coach in the film This Sporting Life (1963).

Mr. Hartnell’s health ended his career as the Doctor. He had developed ateriosclerosis which was effecting him performance physically and mentally. It was at this time that the producers created the idea of “regeneration” which allowed the character to change appearance and personality. This allows different actors to play the role while maintaining continuity. (How James Bond is a more traditional example of changing actors for a role.) Mr Hartnell himself recommended his replacement, Patrick Troughton. The transition from the first to the second Doctor took place on October 29, 1966.

Mr. Hartnell made a few television appearances after leaving Doctor Who but his health limited his performances. Even for The Three Doctors, a 10th anniversary reunion serial, the writers promised his wife Heather* that Mr. Hartnell would sit for most of his time on-screen and read his lines from cue cards.

William Hartnell, the first Doctor, died on April 23, 1975 at the age of 67.

Sources: The Daily Mirror, Wikipedia, and IMDB.com

(Image of Mr. Harnell as Doctor Who during filming in the 1965 serial The Web Planet. It is copyright of BBC and courtesy of neitshade5.wordpress.com)

* The Hartnells married in 1929. And Mr, Hartnell treated her terribly. As told in his biography Who’s There?: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, which was written by his grandddaughter Jessica Carney, Mr. Hartnell was a known womanizer and Mrs. Hartnell tried on several occasions to obtain a divorce. They never separated and were married until he died - 46 years.

Other Doctor Who posts on Obit of the Day:

Caroline John - played “Liz” Shaw, companion of the third Doctor

Raymond Cusick - Creator of the Daleks

Nicholas Courtney - Col. Lethbridge-Stewart

Elisabeth Sladen - Sarah Jane Smith

325 Notes

Obit of the Day: Married 70 Years, Died 15 Hours Apart
Kenny and Helen Felumlee were introduced when they were teenagers - by Kenny’s ex-girlfried. After dating for two years, the couple decided to get married. Immediately. Even though Kenny was only two days shy of his 21st birthday - the legal age for men in Ohio at the time - the pair drove to Kentucky to elope. They married on February 20, 1944, and spent the next 70 years together.
The couple raised eight children with Helen staying at home while Kenny worked for the railroad as a car inspector, ran a automobile repair place, and even carried mail for the town of Nashport. Helen was known for sending personalized greeting cards for any and every event, causing her family to joke that she “kept Hallmark in business.”
Once all their children had left the house, the Felumlees travelled. They visited all fifty United States by bus. They preferred that mode of transportation so they could see everything along the way.
According to their children Kenny and Helen never spent a night apart even preferring to share a bunk bed rather than sleeping in separate beds on a trip. When Kenny became too ill to sleep in the bedroom, Helen slept on the floor nearby so they could stay together.
Helen Felumlee died on April 12, 2014 at the age of 92. Kenny Felumlee died 15 hours later on April 13, 2014 at the age of 93.
Sources: Zanesville Times Recorder and ABC News
(Image Helen and Kenny Felumlee, in the 1940s, is a family photo and courtesy of the Zanesville Times Recorder)
More marriage-related posts on Obit of the Day:
The DeCaros - Married 81 years
The Pawlaks - Died holding hands 
The Direnzos - Married 78 years
The Wrubels - Married 83 years, 129 days 

Obit of the Day: Married 70 Years, Died 15 Hours Apart

Kenny and Helen Felumlee were introduced when they were teenagers - by Kenny’s ex-girlfried. After dating for two years, the couple decided to get married. Immediately. Even though Kenny was only two days shy of his 21st birthday - the legal age for men in Ohio at the time - the pair drove to Kentucky to elope. They married on February 20, 1944, and spent the next 70 years together.

The couple raised eight children with Helen staying at home while Kenny worked for the railroad as a car inspector, ran a automobile repair place, and even carried mail for the town of Nashport. Helen was known for sending personalized greeting cards for any and every event, causing her family to joke that she “kept Hallmark in business.”

Once all their children had left the house, the Felumlees travelled. They visited all fifty United States by bus. They preferred that mode of transportation so they could see everything along the way.

According to their children Kenny and Helen never spent a night apart even preferring to share a bunk bed rather than sleeping in separate beds on a trip. When Kenny became too ill to sleep in the bedroom, Helen slept on the floor nearby so they could stay together.

Helen Felumlee died on April 12, 2014 at the age of 92. Kenny Felumlee died 15 hours later on April 13, 2014 at the age of 93.

Sources: Zanesville Times Recorder and ABC News

(Image Helen and Kenny Felumlee, in the 1940s, is a family photo and courtesy of the Zanesville Times Recorder)

More marriage-related posts on Obit of the Day:

The DeCaros - Married 81 years

The Pawlaks - Died holding hands 

The Direnzos - Married 78 years

The Wrubels - Married 83 years, 129 days