Top 8 Hollywood legends and Celebrity deaths that shocked us in 2014

December 29, 2014 5:40 pm

Here’s a look back at some of the stars we lost – and the legacy they left behind. From Hollywood legends to our own best loved “Westie” – 2014 saw us farewell a host of famous faces.

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1.         L’Wren Scott

In April 2014, the 49-year-old fashion designer and girlfriend of
Rolling Stone Mick Jagger was found dead by her assistant in her luxury
New York apartment, just days after cancelling her show at London
Fashion Week.

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Scott dressed some of the world’s most famous and fashionable women, including Nicole Kidman, Michelle Obama and Madonna.
Tributes
for Scott were led by Mick Jagger’s first wife Bianca, who remembered
the fondly, taking to Twitter to pen her condolences. “Heartbroken to
learn the loss of the lovely and talented L’Wren Scott. My thoughts and
prayers are with her family. May she rest in peace.”
Jagger was
left heartbroken by her death, writing in the days afterwards: “I am
still struggling to understand how my lover and best friend could end
her life in this tragic way. We spent many wonderful years together and
had made a great life for ourselves.
She had great presence and her talent was much admired, not least by me.”
 

2.   Charlotte Dawson

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On
22nd February, Kiwi television personality and model Charlotte Dawson
was found dead in her Woolloomooloo home in Sydney, Australia. Dawson
was found by a real estate agent just prior to her apartment being open
for inspection, ahead of a pending auction that afternoon.
Reports claim the former Australia’s Next Top Model
host had long battled depression. Dawson had relocated to Australia in
2007 claiming she could no longer work in New Zealand because her
reputation had been damaged by “nasty snipes”.
Speaking candidly in a final interview, the 47-year-old said her illness continued to plague her.
“I continue to fight my depression – it’s a bitch of a thing.”
Following Dawson’s death, there was an outpouring of tributes from key media and fashion industry players.
Designer Alex Perry said “we lost a beautiful, bright, shining girl today… rest in peace my sweetheart… I love you.”
Rachel Hunter tweeted “RIP Charlotte Dawson . I’m devastated such an amazing woman & kind soul. Heartbreaking.”
In
the wake of Dawson’s death there have been petitions calling for the
creation of Charlotte’s Law to implement tougher penalties against
online bullying.

3. Robin Williams

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In August of 2014, the world was left reeling as spread of Robin Williams death.
Despite
speculation about the actor’s public battle with drug and alcohol
addiction, the cause of death was officially ruled a suicide, with the
final autopsy report revealing neither drugs or alcohol were involved.
It did, however, show the 63-year-old had been suffering from increased
levels of paranoia from the degenerative illness, Lewy body dementia,
which is a type of dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease.
In
remembering Williams, his wife Susan Schneider said: “His greatest
legacy, besides his three children, is the joy and happiness he offered
to others, particularly those fighting personal battle.”

President Barack Obama said the actor made us laugh and made us cry.
“[Williams]
was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a
bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between”, President Obama said.
“He was one of a kind.”

4.   Joan Rivers

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Comedy’s
grand dame and clebrity-style commentator died in September 2014,
following complications from routine throat surgery. According to
reports the sprigtly 81-year-old was in good spirits before the
operation, travelling cross-country each week from New York to Los
Angeles, where her show Fashion Police was taped.
While Rivers will be remembered for her acid tongue, her love of plastic surgery made her face one that will never be forgottem.
In
a tribute to the star, writer Lena Dunham cheekily tweeted “Joan is
gone but a piece of her lives on: her nose, because it’s made of
polyurethane”.
Joan, no stranger to the art of the self-jibe,
once famously quipped “I’ve had so much plastic surgery, when I die,
they will donate by body to Tupperware.

5.  Ewen Gilmour

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The country went into mourning when New Zealand’s best-loved Westie, Ewen Gilmour, died peacefully in his sleep in October.
The
51-year-old comedy legend had been part of the standup circuit for two
decades, best known for his hard-case take on the world of the classic
Kiwi bogan.
But beyond the comedy was a man with civic leanings,
having sat as a councillor for Waitakere City from 2003-2006 and as an
official wedding celebrant.
Gilmour was remembered by the industry as “one of the nicest guys on the planet”.
Friend
and fellow comedienne Urzila Carlson said Gilmour’s death would leave a
massive hole. “He was just a really, really great guy”, she said. “And
the world’s greatest hugger.”
Among the outpouring of Twitter
tributes that followed were condolences from the Prime Minister John
Key, who took to the social media site to pay his respects.

6.    Rik Mayall

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The
death of British ‘comedy idol’ Rik Mayall also left the comedy world
reeling. The 56-year-old died suddenly from a heart attack after
returning home from a morning jog.
The comedian was best known for his slap-stick sense of humour and was made famous for his roles in The Young Ones, Black Adder, The New Statesman and Bottom.
Industry colleagues and friends remembered the star as a rambunctious character.
Tributes
flowed, recalling Mayall’s particular brand of comedy with fellow actor
Chris Evan’s tweeting: “RIP Rik Mayall. I’m off to hit the gasman with a
frying pan. It’s the least I can do.”

7.   Philip Seymour Hoffman

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Hollywood and fans alike were stunned when news spread of the death of Oscar-winner Philip Seymour Hoffman.
The
46-year-old actor died from an overdose of heroin and cocaine – a
combination known as ‘speedballing’ that had previously claimed the
lives of River Phoenix and John Belushi.
Hoffman had successfully spent 20 years in recovery for addiction issues before relapsing in 2012 and 2013.
The Talented Mr Ripley star left a legacy of major roles, from the offbeat boom operator in Boogie Nights, through to his Oscar winning turn as writer Truman Capote.
The New York Times remembered him as a true tour de force, declaring him “the most ambitious and widely admired American actor of his generation”.

8. Peaches Geldoff

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A drug overdose would also claim the life young Peaches Geldoff, the 25-year-old daughter of Sir Bob Geldoff and Paula Yates.
After
weeks of speculation, a post-mortem exam finally concluded the
mother-of-two had died from a heroin overdose – mirroring her own
mother’s death 14 years earlier.
Days prior to her death, Peaches
posted a photo to Twitter of herself as baby being held by her mother,
with the words, “Me and my mum”.
In remembering his daughter Sir
Bob said “she was the wildest, funniest, cleverest, wittiest and the
most bonkers of us. Writing ‘was’ destroys me afresh. What a beautiful
child.”
Husband, musician Tom Cohen said “my beloved wife Peaches
was adored by myself and her two sons, and I shall bring them up with
their mother in their hearts every day. We shall love her forever.”

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