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Celebrity deaths in 2020: Caroline Flack, Kobe Bryant and others gone too soon – Liverpool Echo

Sadly every year we lose some big name celebrities – and 2020 is no exception, with many passing away far to soon.

From stars of stage and screen, to sporting legends, there are a number of celebrities who will be dearly missed.

One of the most shocking deaths of the year was Caroline Flack who died at the age of 40.

Thousands of messages were posted on social media following her tragic death, with many people calling for a change in people’s online attitudes.

Although these famous faces are gone, their legacies will live on through their achievements and work which will be remembered for years to come.

Here’s just some of the celebrities we’ve lost this year.


Derek Acorah

TV psychic Derek Acorah died at the age of 69 on January 3.

The self-styled medium, whose real name is Derek Johnson, appeared on Celebrity Big Brother in 2017 and launched the paranormal reality TV series Most Haunted in 2001.

His wife, Gwen Acorah, shared the news in a statement on his official Facebook page declaring I will “miss you forever”.

She said: “Farewell my love! I will miss you forever! I’m devastated to announce that my beloved husband Derek has passed away after a very brief illness.

“Thank you so much to everybody who has supported me – I can never thank you enough.”

Mr Acorah was born in Bootle in 1950, and was once on the books of Liverpool FC in the Bill Shankly era, but left without playing a first team game.

Derek Fowlds

Derek Fowlds on Heartbeat

Yes Minister and Heartbeat star Derek Fowlds died aged 82 on January 17.

The star is best known for playing Private Secretary Bernard Woolley in the hit BBC sitcom and police officer Oscar Blaketon in Heartbeat.

The actor died after suffering from pneumonia that led to heart failure caused by sepsis.

He has two sons, Jamie and Jeremy, and his family was at his bedside as he passed away

Helen Bennett, his personal assistant and friend of many years, said: “He was the most beloved man to everybody who ever met him, he never had a bad word to say about anybody and he was so well respected, adored by everyone.

“You couldn’t have met a nicer person ever, he was just a wonderful man and I will miss him terribly.”

Terry Jones

Terry Jones’ family have issued a statement

Monty Python star Terry Jones died at the age of 77, on January 21, following a battle with dementia.

A statement from the family said: “We are deeply saddened to have to announce the passing of beloved husband and father, Terry Jones.

“Terry passed away on the evening of 21 January 2020 at the age of 77 with his wife Anna Soderstrom by his side after a long, extremely brave but always good humoured battle with a rare form of dementia, FTD.

“Over the past few days his wife, children, extended family and many close friends have been constantly with Terry as he gently slipped away at his home in North London.

“We have all lost a kind, funny, warm, creative and truly loving man whose uncompromising individuality, relentless intellect and extraordinary humour has given pleasure to countless millions across six decades.

“His work with Monty Python, his books, films, television programmes, poems and other work will live on forever, a fitting legacy to a true polymath.

“We, his wife Anna, children Bill, Sally, Siri and extended family would like to thank Terry’s wonderful medical professionals and carers for making the past few years not only bearable but often joyful.

“We hope that this disease will one day be eradicated entirely. We ask that our privacy be respected at this sensitive time and give thanks that we lived in the presence of an extraordinarily talented, playful and happy man living a truly authentic life, in his words “Lovingly frosted with glucose.”

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant, LA Lakers

Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash on January 26, aged 41.

The LA Lakers legend was one of the nine victims of the tragic helicopter crash, travelling to the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks for a basketball game when it crashed into a mountainside in Calabasas.

Five-time NBA champion Bryant represented the LA Lakers for the entirety of his 20-year career and is considered one of the greatest basketball players to ever play the game.

Kobe’s daughter Gianna, 13, also died in the crash.

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Nicholas Parsons

Just a Minute host Nicholas Parsons has died aged 96 after a short illness,

Just a Minute host Nicholas Parsons died aged 96 after a short illness on January 28.

The British actor, who also found fame as a TV and radio presenter, died after hospital treatment.

Parsons had hosted Radio 4’s Just A Minute since its inception in 1967.

A statement issued by his agent Jean Diamond, on behalf of his family, said: “Nicholas passed away in the early hours of the 28th of January after a short illness at the age of 96.

“He was with his beloved family who will miss him enormously and who wish to thank the wonderful staff at the Stoke Mandeville Hospital.”


Kirk Douglas

Actor Kirk Douglas, left, and wife Anne Douglas arrive at the 2013 Vanity Fair Oscars Viewing and After Party, Sunday, Feb. 24 2013 at the Sunset Plaza Hotel in West Hollywood, Calif. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
Actor Kirk Douglas, left, and wife Anne Douglas arrive at the 2013 Vanity Fair Oscars Viewing and After Party, Sunday, Feb. 24 2013 at the Sunset Plaza Hotel in West Hollywood, Calif. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas died aged 103 on February 5.

The actor made his acting debut in the 1946 film The Strange Love of Martha Ivers and went on to star in nearly 100 movies, including the role he was most famous for, Spartacus.

Kirk was father to another film star Michael Douglas and his son paid tribute saying: “To the world, he was a legend, an actor from the golden age of movies who lived well into his golden years, a humanitarian whose commitment to justice and the causes he believed in set a standard for all of us to aspire to.”

Caroline Flack

Caroline Flack on Love Island

Caroline Flack died aged 40 on February 15.

The former Love Island host was found in her North London flat with a lawyer for her family confirming she took her own life.

Caroline worked on several big name shows as well as Love Island, including X Factor, Take me Out and I’m a Celebrity.

Her death led to an outpouring of grief, with many people urging others to be kinder on social media.

John Shrapnel

John Shrapnel has passed away

John Shrapnel died aged 77 in February.

The actor, famous for his roles in theatre and on screen passed away following a battle with cancer.

The star was best known for his stage work, often with the Royal Shakespeare Company or the National Theatre, and most recently appeared as Sir Oliver Surface in The School for Scandal at the Barbican Centre in 2011.

John’s last TV appearance came in 2017 in Mike Bartlett’s King Charles III, which was his friend Tim Pigott-Smith’s last TV appearance too.

He appeared in blockbuster films such as Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Gladiator, Notting Hill and 101 Dalmatians.

He also appeared in a variety of television shows including Elizabeth R, Z-Cars, Edward and Mrs. Simpson, Space: 1999, Inspector Morse, GBH, Coogan’s Run and Foyle’s War.


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