October 23, 2000 12:00 PM

Expecting

Actor Lorenzo Lamas, 42, and his fourth wife, Shauna, 29, a former model, are expecting their third child in March. Married since April 1996, they have two daughters, Alexandra, 3, and Victoria, 2. Lamas has three other children.

Deaths

Mary Francis, who was the wife of prolific author Dick Francis and was credited (often by her husband of 53 years) as the unbilled coauthor of his bestselling mysteries set in the world of horse racing, died in his arms on Sept. 30 shortly after having a heart attack at their home in the Cayman Islands. She was 76. Francis’s latest novel, Shattered, “will be my final thing, unless one of these days I write a book about her,” he says. “But I don’t think I could do her justice.”…

Composer Robert Allen, 73, who wrote the Johnny Mathis hits “Chances Are” and “It’s Not for Me to Say,” died on Oct. 1 of colon cancer in Quogue, N.Y….

Film, TV and stage actor David Dukes, 55, who had numerous roles on Broadway and played Mr. McPhee on The WB’s Dawson’s Creek, died on Oct. 9 in Lakewood, Wash., of causes related to cardiovascular disease.

Engaged

Suddenly Susan’s Kathy Griffin, 39, plans to tie the knot next February with boyfriend Matt Moline, a computer administrator. It will be the first marriage for both….

Former Baretta star Robert Blake, 67, and his longtime lady Leebonny Bakley, 44, reportedly plan to make it official by marrying on Nov. 15. The couple’s daughter Rose Lenore Sophia Blake was born June 2. It will be his second marriage.

Recuperating

Lethal Weapon actor Danny Glover, 54, is getting around on crutches following knee surgery on Sept. 12….

Country singer Chris LeDoux, 52, whose 30-odd albums have been cited by Garth Brooks as a major influence, received a liver transplant on Oct. 7 in Omaha. LeDoux had been suffering from a disease that blocks the bile ducts and can lead to cirrhosis.

Legal Matters

In late September a federal judge in Manhattan ruled that designer Giorgio Armani may have to stand trial later this month on sexual-harassment charges brought by his former advertising director Bonnie Solomon last March. She is seeking S10 million in damages from the 66-year-old couturier. Armani’s attorney did not respond to requests for comment.

Mishap

Actor Samuel L. Jackson, 51, accidentally whacked the head of a stuntman with a golf club while filming a fight scene for 51st State, a movie that Jackson is making in the U.K. Ray Nicholas suffered a gash and required stitches.

Wed

Oscar-winning actor Rod Steiger (In the Heat of the Night), 75, who in the past couple of years has been Elizabeth Taylor’s frequent squire at public events, and actress Joan Benedict (General Hospital), 59, became mister and missus on Oct. 10 in Malibu. It was his fifth trip down the aisle, her second.

Update

Though she had an operation on her hand on Sept. 5 to reconstruct a tendon (she accidentally sliced it while cutting the price tag off her son’s fishing pole), chat show hostess Rosie O’Donnell, 38, will go back for more surgery in mid-October in an effort to improve her condition.

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