READ Famous People Who Died in 1997

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For one reason or another, we as human beings seem to be fascinated by celebrity deaths. Every year we mourn the loss of famous people who pass away, and 1997 was no exception. In fact, 1997 was one of the more infamous years for celebrity deaths. First there was Princess Diana's limousine crash, which shocked the entire world. In the hip hop community, the murder of Notorious BIG was considered one of the most high profile murder cases of all time, as the killer was never found.

Here's our list of the most notable people to die in 1997, ordered by how well-known they were. All walks of famous people are on this list, including actors, athletes, musicians, politicians and more.Although the rich and famous are just like the rest of us, it's alarming how many of them have their lives cut short because of drug overdoses or other accidents. Still others live out many long years only to succumb to diseases like cancer late in life.

Which celebrities died in 1997? Scroll down and see for yourself.

Diana, Princess of Wales is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Diana, Princess of Wales Traffic collision - Diana, Princess of Wales, was the first wife of Charles, Prince of Wales, who is the eldest child and heir apparent of Queen Elizabeth II. Diana was born into an aristocratic British family with ...more

Mother Teresa is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Mother Teresa Heart failure - Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, MC, commonly known as Mother Teresa, was a Roman Catholic religious sister and missionary who lived most of her life in India. She was born in today's Macedonia, with ...more

James Stewart is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
James Stewart Cardiac arrest, Myocardial infarction, Pulmonary embolism - James Maitland "Jimmy" Stewart was an American film and stage actor, known for his distinctive drawl voice and down-to-earth persona. Over the course of his career, he starred in many ...more

Chris Farley is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Chris Farley Drug overdose, Morphine, Heroin overdose - Christopher Crosby "Chris" Farley was an American comedian and actor. Farley was known for his loud, energetic comedic style, and was a member of Chicago's Second City Theatre and cast ...more

William S. Burroughs is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
William S. Burroughs Myocardial infarction - William Seward Burroughs II was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist, painter, and spoken word performer. A primary figure of the Beat Generation and a major postmodernist author, ...more

John Denver is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
John Denver Aviation accident or incident - Henry John Deutschendorf, Jr., known professionally as John Denver, was an American singer-songwriter, actor, activist and humanitarian, whose greatest commercial success was as a solo singer, ...more

Gianni Versace is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Gianni Versace Firearm, Murder - Gianni Versace was an Italian fashion designer and founder of Versace, an international fashion house, which produces accessories, fragrances, make-up and home furnishings as well as clothes. He ...more

Robert Mitchum is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Robert Mitchum Emphysema, Lung cancer - Robert Charles Durman Mitchum was an American film actor, author, composer and singer. Mitchum rose to prominence for his starring roles in several classic films noir, and is generally ...more

Allen Ginsberg is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Allen Ginsberg Liver cancer, Hepatitis - Irwin Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of both the Beat Generation of the 1950s and the counterculture that soon would follow. He vigorously opposed militarism, ...more

Mobutu Sese Seko is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Mobutu Sese Seko Prostate cancer - Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga was the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo from 1965 to 1997. Installed and supported in office primarily by Belgium and the United ...more

Red Skelton is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Red Skelton Pneumonia - Richard Bernard "Red" Skelton was an American entertainer best known for his national radio and television acts between 1937 and 1971 and as host of the television program The Red ...more

Burgess Meredith is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Burgess Meredith Melanoma, Alzheimer's disease, Skin cancer - Oliver Burgess Meredith, known professionally as Burgess Meredith, was an American actor and director in theater, film, and television. Active for more than six decades, Meredith has been called ...more

Marshall Applewhite is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Marshall Applewhite Suicide - Marshall Herff Applewhite, Jr., also known as "Bo" and "Do", among other names, was an American cult leader who founded what became known as the Heaven's Gate religious group ...more

The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
The Notorious B.I.G. Firearm, Murder, Gunshot - Christopher George Latore Wallace, better known by his stage names The Notorious B.I.G., Biggie or Biggie Smalls, was an American rapper. Wallace was raised in the Brooklyn borough of New York ...more

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Jeff Buckley is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Jeff Buckley Drowning - Jeffrey Scott "Jeff" Buckley, raised as Scott "Scottie" Moorhead, was an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. After a decade as a session guitarist in Los Angeles, ...more

Brian Pillman is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Brian Pillman Brian William Pillman was an American football player and professional wrestler best known for his appearances in World Championship Wrestling, Extreme Championship Wrestling and the World ...more

Brian Keith is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Brian Keith Suicide - Brian Keith was an American film, television, and stage actor who in his six decade-long career gained recognition for his work in movies such as the 1961 Disney family film The Parent Trap, the ...more

Deng Xiaoping is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Deng Xiaoping Parkinson's disease - Deng Xiaoping; 22 August 1904 – 19 February 1997 was a Chinese revolutionary and statesman. He was the leader of China from 1978 until his retirement in 1992. After Mao Zedong's death, Deng led ...more

Bridgette Andersen is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Bridgette Andersen Drug overdose, Heroin overdose - Bridgette Andersen was an American child actress best known for her part in the title role of the 1982 comedy Savannah Smiles.

Anton LaVey is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Anton LaVey Anton Szandor LaVey was an American author, occultist, and musician. He was the founder of the Church of Satan as well as the author of The Satanic Bible and the founder of LaVeyan Satanism, a ...more

Charles Brady is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Charles Brady Charles Brady was a painter who was born and trained in New York and spent most of his life in Ireland. Charles Brady was in the US Navy in World War II; he did mundane jobs after returning from ...more

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Fritz Von Erich is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Fritz Von Erich Lung cancer, Brain tumor - Jack Barton Adkisson was an American professional wrestler under the ring name Fritz Von Erich, better known today as a wrestling promoter and the patriarch of the Von Erich family. He was also ...more

James Robert Baker is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
James Robert Baker Suicide - James Robert Baker was an American author of sharply satirical, predominantly gay-themed transgressional fiction. A native Californian, his work is set almost entirely in Southern California. ...more

Linda Stirling is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Linda Stirling Cancer - Linda Stirling was an American showgirl, model and actress. In her later years, she had a second career as a college English professor for more than two decades. She is most famous for her roles ...more

Merle Pertile is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Merle Pertile Merle Pertile was an American model and actress. She was Playboy magazine's Playmate of the Month for its January 1962 issue. Pertile grew up in Indiana and Illinois. She attended and graduated ...more

James A. Michener is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
James A. Michener Renal failure - James Albert Michener was an American author of more than 40 books, the majority of which were fictional, lengthy family sagas covering the lives of many generations in particular geographic ...more

Toshiro Mifune is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Toshiro Mifune Multiple organ dysfunction syndrome - Toshiro Mifune was a Japanese actor who appeared in almost 170 feature films. He is best known for his 16-film collaboration with filmmaker Akira Kurosawa in such works as Rashomon, Seven ...more

Paul Tsongas is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Paul Tsongas Pneumonia - Paul Efthemios Tsongas was a United States Senator from Massachusetts from 1979 to 1985. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 1992 presidential election. He ...more

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Michael LeMoyne Kennedy is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Michael LeMoyne Kennedy Skiing accident, Skiing - Michael LeMoyne Kennedy was the sixth of eleven children of Robert F. Kennedy and Ethel Skakel.

Andrew Cunanan is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Andrew Cunanan Suicide - Andrew Phillip Cunanan was an American serial killer who murdered at least five people, including fashion designer Gianni Versace, during a three-month period in 1997. On June 12, 1997, Cunanan ...more

Michael Hutchence is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Michael Hutchence Suicide - Michael Kelland John Hutchence was an Australian musician and actor. He was a founding member, lead singer and lyricist of rock band INXS from 1977 until his death in 1997. Hutchence was a ...more

Denver Pyle is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Denver Pyle Lung cancer - Denver Dell Pyle was an American film and television actor. He was best known for portraying Briscoe Darling, Jr. in several episodes of The Andy Griffith Show and Uncle Jesse in The Dukes of ...more

Debbie Linden is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Debbie Linden Heroin overdose - Debbie Linden was a British glamour model and actress best known for her role as old Mr Grace's secretary in the sitcom Are You Being Served?. Born in Glasgow, she played roles in various other ...more

Don Messick is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Don Messick Stroke - Donald Earl "Don" Messick was an American actor, best known for his voice over roles for Hanna-Barbera. His best-remembered vocal creations include Scooby-Doo, Bamm-Bamm Rubble and ...more

Robert C. Weaver is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Robert C. Weaver Robert Clifton Weaver served as the first United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development from 1966 to 1968. He was the first African American to hold a cabinet-level position in the ...more

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David Doyle is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
David Doyle Myocardial infarction - David Fitzgerald Doyle was an American actor.

Charles Kuralt is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Charles Kuralt Systemic lupus erythematosus - Charles Kuralt was an American journalist. He was most widely known for his long career with CBS, first for his "On the Road" segments on The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite, and ...more

A. L. Rowse is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
A. L. Rowse Dr. Alfred Leslie Rowse CH FBA, known publicly as A. L. Rowse but to friends and family as Leslie, was a British author and historian from Cornwall, England, UK. Rowse is best known for his work ...more

Al Blanche is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Al Blanche Prosper Albert Blanche is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He played three seasons with the Boston Braves / Bees from 1935 to 1936.

Sheldon Leonard is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Sheldon Leonard Natural causes - Sheldon Leonard was a pioneering American film and television producer, director, writer, and actor.

Sydney Newman is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Sydney Newman Myocardial infarction - Sydney Cecil Newman, OC was a Canadian film and television producer, who played a pioneering role in British television drama from the late 1950s to the late 1960s. After his return to Canada in ...more

Melvin Calvin is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Melvin Calvin Melvin Ellis Calvin was an American chemist most famed for discovering the Calvin cycle along with Andrew Benson and James Bassham, for which he was awarded the 1961 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He ...more

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Alexander R. Todd, Baron Todd is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Alexander R. Todd, Baron Todd Alexander Robertus Todd, Baron Todd, OM, PRS FRSE was a British biochemist whose research on the structure and synthesis of nucleotides, nucleosides, and nucleotide coenzymes gained him the ...more

H. C. Coombs is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
H. C. Coombs Herbert Cole H.C. "Nugget" Coombs was an Australian economist and public servant.

Jean-Dominique Bauby is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Jean-Dominique Bauby Heart failure, Pneumonia - Jean-Dominique Bauby was a well-known French journalist, author and editor of the French fashion magazine ELLE. He had two children with Sylvie de la Rochefoucauld, a son named Théophile ...more

Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Sviatoslav Richter Sviatoslav Teofilovich Richter was a Soviet pianist known for the depth of his interpretations, virtuoso technique, and vast repertoire. He is considered one of the greatest pianists of the 20th ...more

Audra Lindley is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Audra Lindley Leukemia - Audra Marie Lindley was an American actress, most famous for her role as landlady Helen Roper on the sitcom Three's Company and its spin-off, The Ropers.

James Dickey is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
James Dickey James Lafayette Dickey was an American poet and novelist. He was appointed the eighteenth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress in 1966. He also received the Order of the ...more

Daniel Farson is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Daniel Farson Daniel Negley Farson was a British writer and broadcaster, strongly identified with the early days of commercial television in the UK, when his sharp, investigative style contrasted with the ...more

Eugene Merle Shoemaker is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous People Who Died in 1997
Eugene Merle Shoemaker Traffic collision - Eugene Merle Shoemaker, also known as Gene Shoemaker, was an American geologist and one of the founders of the field of planetary science. He is best known for co-discovering the Comet ...more