Famous faces we lost in 2016 – from Alan Rickman to Alan Thicke

By Tribute on December 26, 2016 | 14 Comments

This year has been fraught with several monumental moments and brilliant breakthroughs across all fields. But it has also been marred by the passing of many notable celebrities.

Here, we take a look back at the stars we lost in 2016.

Alan Rickman dead in early 2016


The early months of the year are always dreary, but in 2016 they were particularly rough with a number of major deaths. In January, singer David Bowie died at the age of 69, two days after the release of his 25th album Blackstar. In the same month, Alan Rickman, a.k.a. Severus Snape, passed away of cancer. He was also 69. In February, 91-year-old Oscar winner George Kennedy (Cool Hand Luke) died, and in March, actress-turned-First Lady Nancy Reagan and stand-up comedian Garry Shandling passed away.



Prince dies in April



Spring was unfortunately peppered with the passing of several big names. On April 18, five-time Emmy winner Doris Roberts (Everybody Loves Raymond) died at the age of 90. We also lost one of the biggest rock stars of the ’80s in April when Prince passed away at 57. In June, Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin died in a freak car accident at his home. He was only 27.



Actor Gene Wilder dies in August



The third quarter of the year brought with it the passing of legendary show business staple Garry Marshall. The Happy Days creator and Pretty Woman director died on July 19 at the age of 81. The following month, Willy Wonka himself passed away when comedic actor Gene Wilder died at the age of 83.




Florence Henderson dead in December

In November, iconic singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen passed away at the age of 82. In the same month, Brady Bunch mom Florence Henderson also died. She was the same age as Leonard. The final month of the year carried with it the passing of Growing Pains actor Alan Thicke (who was 69 when he died of a heart attack) and actress/Hollywood socialite Zsa Zsa Gabor (who died two months shy of her 100th birthday). Tragically, on Christmas Day, pop superstar George Michael died at the young age of 53, reportedly of heart failure. Two days later, on Dec. 27, Star Wars actress Carrie Fisher died after suffering a major heart attack. She was 60. One day after Carrie passed away, her iconic mother Debbie Reynolds died at 84. She was in the process of planning her daughter’s funeral when she had a stroke. ~Matthew Pariselli

Comments & Discussion

  1. Terri-Lynn Pammett • December 27, 2016 @ 11:16 AM

    I’d also like to add Glenn Fry in January, a music superstar. How can you forget him?

  2. Melodie • December 27, 2016 @ 1:18 PM

    And today we lost Carrie Fisher. My childhood is dying 🙁

  3. TJai • December 27, 2016 @ 1:52 PM

    Comedian Ricky Harris passed away on December 26th.

  4. Katherine • December 27, 2016 @ 5:28 PM

    Alan Rickman was one of my favorites and having him die in a very dreary month kind of killed me, he was an active feminist and an amazing actor, he is one of the reasons I love Harry Potter. Thank you to my role model Alan Rickman.

  5. Truth Speaker • December 27, 2016 @ 6:56 PM


    Muhammad Ali?????


  6. Pat • December 28, 2016 @ 3:47 AM

    We also lost the amazing Herschell Gordon Lewis this year.

  7. Little Bird • December 28, 2016 @ 2:59 PM

    We won’t ever recover from the sudden loss of Bowie.

  8. CrunchTime • December 28, 2016 @ 3:51 PM

    Prince, Bowie, and George Michael? What is this?

  9. Sara • December 28, 2016 @ 9:31 PM

    Today We lost Debbie Reynolds.RIP

  10. Tiffany • December 29, 2016 @ 12:35 AM

    Debbie Reynolds will forever be a legend !

  11. Vivacious V • December 29, 2016 @ 12:58 AM

    Something tells me there is a HUGE party in heaven and all of the celebs/notable figures whom have passed were on that guest list.
    Though the exceptional memories of our childhoods are fading, it’s up to those remaining to mold the future with laughs, love and creative passion so our children can look back on the legacy that was left to them. On the other hand, If the world is going to hell in a hand basket sooner than later, it would be nice to have a few great laughs along the way.. the show must go on.

  12. Liam • December 29, 2016 @ 9:45 AM

    Richard Adams died on the 24th!

    Has nobody ever read Watership Down? It was part of my childhood for goodness sake!!!

  13. Carolyn • December 29, 2016 @ 11:12 AM

    Let’s not forget Rick Parfitt of Status Quo, passed away Christmas Eve. RIP Rick, loved the music.

  14. kelly • April 23, 2017 @ 6:19 AM

    Alan Thicke did not die of a heart attack

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