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Famous People Who Died in 2002

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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 2002 was no exception. Many beloved actors died in 2002, including legendary comedian Milton Berle. Here's our list of the most notable people to die in 2002, 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 2002? Scroll down and see for yourself.
  • Milton Berle

    Milton Berle

    Colorectal cancer
    Milton Berle (born Mendel Berlinger; Yiddish: ‏מענדעל בערלינגער‎; July 12, 1908 – March 27,...  more
  • James Coburn

    James Coburn

    Myocardial infarction
    James Harrison Coburn III (August 31, 1928 – November 18, 2002) was an American actor. He...  more
  • Dudley Moore

    Dudley Moore

    Progressive supranuclear palsy, Pneumonia
    Dudley Stuart John Moore, CBE (19 April 1935 – 27 March 2002) was an English actor, comedian,...  more
  • Billy Wilder

    Billy Wilder

    Billy Wilder (; German: [ˈvɪldɐ]; born Samuel Wilder, June 22, 1906 – March 27, 2002) was an...  more
  • Joe Strummer

    Joe Strummer

    Congenital heart defect
    John Graham Mellor (21 August 1952 – 22 December 2002), known by his name from May of 1975,...  more
  • Aileen Wuornos

    Aileen Wuornos

    Lethal injection, Capital punishment
    Aileen Carol Wuornos Pralle (; born Aileen Carol Pittman; February 29, 1956 – October 9, 2002)...  more
  • Rod Steiger

    Rod Steiger

    Rodney Stephen Steiger (April 14, 1925 – July 9, 2002) was an American actor, noted for his...  more
  • Richard Harris

    Richard Harris

    Hodgkin's lymphoma
    Richard St. John Harris (1 October 1930 – 25 October 2002) was an Irish actor and singer. He...  more
  • Dee Dee Ramone

    Dee Dee Ramone

    Heroin overdose
    Douglas Glenn Colvin (September 18, 1951 – June 5, 2002), known professionally as Dee Dee...  more
  • Myra Hindley

    Myra Hindley

    Myocardial infarction
  • John Entwistle

    John Entwistle

    Drug overdose, Myocardial infarction
    John Alec Entwistle (9 October 1944 – 27 June 2002) was an English bass guitarist, singer,...  more
  • Katy Jurado

    Katy Jurado

    Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Renal failure
    María Cristina Estela Marcela Jurado García (16 January 1924 – 5 July 2002), better known as...  more
  • Nobu McCarthy

    Nobu McCarthy

    Aortic aneurysm
    Nobu McCarthy (née Atsumi; November 13, 1934 – April 6, 2002) was a Japanese Canadian actress,...  more
  • Stephen Jay Gould

    Stephen Jay Gould

    Cancer, Lung cancer
    Stephen Jay Gould (; September 10, 1941 – May 20, 2002) was an American paleontologist,...  more
  • Dave Thomas

    Dave Thomas

    Liver tumour
    Rex David Thomas (July 2, 1932 – January 8, 2002) was an American businessman, philanthropist,...  more
  • Lionel Hampton

    Lionel Hampton

    Cardiovascular disease
    Lionel Leo Hampton (April 20, 1908 – August 31, 2002) was an American jazz vibraphonist,...  more
  • Ted Williams

    Ted Williams

    Cardiovascular disease
    Theodore Samuel "Ted" Williams was an American Major League Baseball left fielder, and later...  more
  • Chuck Jones

    Chuck Jones

    Heart failure
    Charles Martin Jones (September 21, 1912 – February 22, 2002) was an American animator,...  more
  • Peggy Lee

    Peggy Lee

    Cardiovascular disease, Myocardial infarction
    Norma Deloris Egstrom (May 26, 1920 – January 21, 2002), known professionally as Peggy Lee,...  more
  • Lou Thesz

    Lou Thesz

    Surgical complications
    Aloysius Martin "Lou" Thesz (April 24, 1916 – April 28, 2002) was an American professional...  more
  • John Gotti

    John Gotti

    Cancer of the larynx
  • Davey Boy Smith

    Davey Boy Smith

    Myocardial infarction
    David Smith (27 November 1962 – 18 May 2002) was a British professional wrestler. Born in...  more
  • Layne Staley

    Layne Staley

    Heroin overdose
    Layne Thomas Staley (born Layne Rutherford Staley, August 22, 1967 – April 5, 2002) was an...  more
  • Herb Ritts

    Herb Ritts

    Herbert "Herb" Ritts Jr. (August 13, 1952 – December 26, 2002) was an American fashion...  more
  • Josh Ryan Evans

    Josh Ryan Evans

    Heart failure, Surgical complications
    Joshua Ryan Evans (January 10, 1982 – August 5, 2002) was an American actor who became known...  more