The obstreperous, autocratic former owner of baseball’s Oakland Athletics, Charles O. Finley, 77, died of heart and vascular disease on Feb. 19 in Chicago. An insurance executive, Finley bought the Kansas City Athletics in 1960 and eight years later moved the team to Oakland, where the A’s won three consecutive World Series: 1972, 73 and ’74. Finley championed several unorthodox ideas intended to popularize the game, among them brightly colored uniforms, orange baseballs and a mule mascot….
Regarded as the last survivor of the sinking of the Titanic still able to recall the event, Eva Hart, 91, died of cancer on Feb. 14 in London. Hart was 7 when the liner carrying more than 1,500 other passengers sank the night of April 14-15, 1912, after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic. One of only 705 survivors, Hart, who never married, published her autobiography, In the Shadow of the Titanic, in 1994….
Writer Eleanor Clark, 82, died on Feb. 16 in Boston after a battle with emphysema and pneumonia. Clark, who was married to novelist and poet Robert Penn Warren from 1952 until his death in 1989, is remembered for her account of harvesting bivalves in Brittany, The Oysters of Locmariaquer, which won a 1964 National Book Award….
Former California Gov. Edmund G. (Pat) Brown, 90, who served from 1959 until losing a third term to Ronald Reagan in 1966, died of a heart attack at his L.A. home on Feb. 16. His son Jerry held California’s highest office from 1975 to 1983, but daughter Kathleen lost her 1994 bid.
Black Entertainment Television news host Janet Langhart (age unavailable) and Maine Sen. William Cohen, 55, wed in Washington on Valentine’s Day. It was the second marriage for both. Among the guests were Gen. Colin Powell and his wife, Alma, CBS’s Dan Rather and Attorney General Janet Reno.
Rapper Snoop Doggy Dogg (born Calvin Broadus), 24, and his former bodyguard McKinley Lee, 25, were acquitted on Feb. 20 in L.A. superior court of murder charges in the death of Philip Woldemariam, 20. The jury deadlocked on a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter against both men, and Judge Paul G. Flynn declared a mistrial on those charges. Woldemariam was fatally shot in the back by someone in a Jeep driven by the rapper on Aug. 25, 1993. The armed victim had had an earlier confrontation with Sean Abrams, a childhood friend of Broadus’s, outside the performer’s apartment….
Harry Thomas Perzigian, 40, the drug dealer who sold cocaine to Carroll O’Connor’s son Hugh, was sentenced to a year in jail on Feb. 15 in a Santa Monica court. O’Connor’s son, a regular on his father’s CBS series In the Heat of the Night, committed suicide in March 1995 at the age of 32.
Boxer Mike Tyson, 29, and his girlfriend Monica Turner, 29, had a daughter, Rayna (8 lbs., 10 ozs.), on Feb. 14 at a Maryland hospital. Turner, a graduate of Georgetown University’s medical school, and Tyson, who served three years for rape, each have one daughter from other relationships.
After a whirlwind courtship and five months of marriage, actor Charlie Sheen, 30, has announced he is filing for divorce from his wife, model Donna Peele, 25. Of the split, Sheen said, “You buy a car, it breaks down, what are you gonna do?”