LOCAL OBITUARIES

Quiz: Spirits of Christmas Past

One of them recorded an iconic pop song about Santa Claus, and then died on Christmas Day. Another made certain that Ralphie got his coveted Red Ryder BB gun in the movie “A Christmas Story.” Still another was a modern-day incarnation of Kris Kringle walking through skid row in Los Angeles and handing out money to startled down-and-outers.

A number of notable figures with strong ties to Christmas have been featured in Los Angeles Times news obituaries in recent years. And what could be more festive than a quiz to test your knowledge of newsmakers with Christmas legacies?

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James Stewart’s character of George Bailey in the 1946 classic “It’s a Wonderful Life” lived in which town:

(Associated Press)

A. Bedford Falls

B. Empire Falls

C. Niagara Falls

D. Little Falls

James Stewart’s character of George Bailey in the 1946 classic “It’s a Wonderful Life” lived in which town:

(Associated Press)

A. Bedford Falls

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Who routinely introduced the AP All-American college football team during his annual Christmas TV special:

A. Andy Williams

B. Bing Crosby

C. Perry Como

D. Bob Hope

Who routinely introduced the AP All-American college football team during his annual Christmas TV special:

Roy Rogers, Bob Hope and Jane Russell in "Son of Paleface."

D. Bob Hope

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Donald Yetter Gardner wrote a classic Yule tune about a whistle-challenged boy who wanted only this for Christmas.

A. A whip that cracks

B. An air rifle

C. A football

D. His two front teeth

Donald Yetter Gardner wrote a classic Yule tune about a whistle-challenged boy who wanted only this for Christmas.

D. His two front teeth

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Singer Mel Torme wrote the words to “The Christmas Song” whose familiar opening lyrics are:

Mel Torme in 1957 (Associated Press)

A. Sleigh bells ring, are you listening?

B. Chestnuts roasting on an open fire

C. Grandma got run over by a reindeer

D. City sidewalks, busy sidewalks dressed in holiday style.

Singer Mel Torme wrote the words to “The Christmas Song” whose familiar opening lyrics are:

B. Chestnuts roasting on an open fire.

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Eartha Kitt died on Christmas Day in 2008. We can only hope that the evening before she received a goodbye from the gentleman whom she referred to as:

(Los Angeles Times)

A. Jolly Old St. Nicholas

B. Good King Wenceslas

C. Santa Baby

D. Big Guy

Eartha Kitt died on Christmas Day in 2008. We can only hope that the evening before she received a goodbye from the gentleman whom she referred to as:

C. Santa Baby

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Which of these notable figures did not die on Christmas Day?

(Los Angeles Times, Associated Press)

A. James Brown

B. Gerald R. Ford

C. Dean Martin

D. Billy Martin

Which of these notable figures did not die on Christmas Day?

Gerald and Betty Ford with Pat and Richard Nixon on the day Nixon resigned. (Associated Press)

B. President Ford, who died Dec. 26, 2006.

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Ralphie’s mom was reluctant, but his dad ultimately popped for the BB gun in the 1983 movie “A Christmas Story.” Which actor played the curmudgeonly father?

A. Bruno Kirby

B. Darren McGavin

C. Steve McQueen

D. Leslie Nielsen

Ralphie’s mom was reluctant, but his dad ultimately popped for the BB gun in the 1983 movie “A Christmas Story.” Which actor played the curmudgeonly father?

(Reed Saxon / Associated Press)

B. Darren McGavin

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Rev. Maurice Chase, a Catholic priest, had a habit of handing out cash on Christmas. What was his nickname?

A. Father Christmas

B. Pastor Pushover

C. Rev. Refund

D. Father Dollar Bill

Rev. Maurice Chase, a Catholic priest, had a habit of handing out cash on Christmas. What was his nickname?

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

D. Father Dollar Bill

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Hugh Martin Jr. is the composer who co-wrote “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” It was featured in which movie that starred Judy Garland?

(Hugh Martin collection)

A. “Meet Me in St. Louis”

B. “The Wizard of Oz”

C. “Love Finds Andy Hardy”

D. “A Star is Born”

Hugh Martin Jr. is the composer who co-wrote “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” It was featured in which movie that starred Judy Garland?

A. “Meet Me in St. Louis”

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Animator Bill Melendez produced and directed the classic TV special “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and provided the voice for Snoopy. In what year did the show first air?

GK Communications

A. 1962

B. 1965

C. 1976

D. 1990

Animator Bill Melendez produced and directed the classic TV special “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and provided the voice for Snoopy. In what year did the show first air?

B. 1965

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Songwriter Johnny Marks wrote a number of popular Christmas tunes. Which of the following songs did he write?

A. “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”

B. "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree"

C. "A Holly Jolly Christmas"

D. All of the above.

Songwriter Johnny Marks wrote a number of popular Christmas tunes. Which of the following songs did he write?

Johnny Marks in 1956 (Associated Press)

D. All of the above

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He had a big hit with “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”:

A. Roy Rogers

B. Gene Autry

C. Sheriff John Rovick

D. Fred Rogers

He had a big hit with “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”:

Gene Autry with Virginia Grey in "Bells of Capistrano." (Autry Museum of Western Heritage)

B. Gene Autry

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Which Texas entrepreneur turned his family’s bakery into a specialized mail-order business that ships fruitcakes around the world?

A. Bert Sugar

B. Deron Cherry

C. Bill McNutt

D. Jack Lemmon

Which Texas entrepreneur turned his family’s bakery into a specialized mail-order business that ships fruitcakes around the world?

(Los Angeles Times)

C. Bill McNutt

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Who was the voice of Sam the Snowman in the 1962 animated Christmas TV special “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”:

A. Gabby Hayes

B. Burl Ives

C. Denver Pyle

D. Slim Pickens

Who was the voice of Sam the Snowman in the 1962 animated Christmas TV special “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”:

Burl Ives in 1993. (Marty Reichenthal / Associated Press)

B. Burl Ives

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Paul Ecke Sr., an Encinitas entrepreneur, perfected which plant that has become synonymous with Christmas?

A. Poinsettia

B. Blue spruce pine tree

C. Holly

D. Chestnuts

Paul Ecke Sr., an Encinitas entrepreneur, perfected which plant that has become synonymous with Christmas?

Paul Ecke Sr. in 1971. (Los Angeles Times)

A. Poinsettia

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