By David Cobb Craig
September 20, 1999 12:00 PM


Producer and manager Charles Lowe, 87, who controlled the career of his wife, actress-singer Carol Channing, for 40 years, died on Sept. 2 in L.A. Shortly after his stroke in 1997, Channing filed for divorce, accusing Lowe of mismanaging her finances and abandoning her sexually (she said the couple made love no more than twice in 1956, the year of their marriage, and never again afterwards). Lowe denied the charges. At the time of his death, divorce proceedings were pending.

…Joan R. Braden, an early supermom who raised eight kids while juggling a varied career that ranged from State Department official to television interviewer, died of a heart attack on Aug. 29 in Alexandria, Va. She was 76. Braden’s husband, Tom, a retired newspaper columnist, chronicled her life in Eight Is Enough, a book that spawned the ABC series (1977 to ’81) of the same name.


Chronic recidivist Robert Downey Jr., 34, the Oscar-nominated actor (Chaplin) who went to prison to serve a three-year sentence on Aug. 5 for repeatedly violating his probation on drug charges, left North Kern State Prison in Delano, Calif., on Aug. 25 to join some 700 inmates at a lockdown substance abuse treatment facility in Corcoran, Calif.


Mono-monikered rock-and-roller Bono, 39, frontman for the Irish band U2, and Ali Hewson, late 30s, his teenage sweetheart and wife of 17 years, welcomed their third child and first son last month. The couple, who have yet to name the new lad, have two daughters, Jordan, 10, and Eve, 6.

Real-Life Drama

Melanie Vesey, who turns 28 on Sept. 16 and who has appeared on TV’s Law & Order and plays Andy Kaufman’s sister in Man on the Moon, the upcoming biopic about the late comic starring Jim Carrey, suffered an accidental gunshot wound on Aug. 30 in New York City. Vesey was with off-duty policewoman Alex Perez, a friend, when the officer’s weapon discharged and hit the actress in the leg. She was treated at a nearby hospital and released.

Behind Bars

Declaring that the performer is “killing himself,” a judge in Los Angeles sentenced Scott Weiland, 31, lead singer for the rock group Stone Temple Pilots, to one year in jail on Sept. 3 for violating probation from a 1997 arrest for drug possession. Last year the musician was busted for buying heroin.


Comic Jerry Lewis, 73, who has been hosting muscular dystrophy telethons for 34 years and who has lately been suffering from the effects of viral meningitis, missed much of his 21½-hour Labor Day show, though he did croon his trademark “You’ll Never Walk Alone” at the end. Happily, the event raised $53.1 million, more than it ever has before.

Legal Matters

Henry Cisneros, 52, a former Clinton Cabinet official with his own independent-counsel woes, pleaded guilty on Sept. 7 to one misdemeanor count of lying to the FBI. He has to pay a $10,000 fine but faces no jail time. Cisneros, who was mayor of San Antonio and Secretary of HUD, now heads Univision, a Spanish-language network.