Former USC linebacker
Eric Scoggins, 49, an outside linebacker who helped USC beat Alabama in the teams' big 1978 matchup, died of Lou Gehrig's disease Saturday in Tracy, Calif., USC announced Tuesday.
Scoggins played three games for the San Francisco 49ers in 1982, then spent time in the United States Football League with the Los Angeles Express and Houston Gamblers.
He was a four-year letterman at USC (1977-80). He recorded 164 career tackles, including 11 as a sophomore in the 24-14 win at Alabama. That performance earned him the Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Week award. The Trojans finished the 1978 season 12-1 and won the United Press International voting for the national championship. Alabama, at 11-1, won the Associated Press national title.
Born Jan. 23, 1959, in Inglewood, Scoggins was a star quarterback at Inglewood High School. After he retired from football, he became a businessman and joined former 49er teammates Ronnie Lott and Keena Turner in auto dealerships.
A resident of Tracy, Scoggins was diagnosed in 2007 with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a degenerative disease often called Lou Gehrig's disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.
Veteran fought in both world wars
Bill Stone, 108, one of Britain's last surviving World War I veterans, died Saturday from a chest infection, the Ministry of Defense said Monday.
Stone is the last known veteran in Britain to have fought in both World War I and World War II. He was one of only three World War I survivors who took part in last year's services to mark the 90th anniversary of the end of World War I.
William Stone was born in Devon, in southwest England, on Sept. 23, 1900, the 10th of 14 children. He joined the Royal Navy on his 18th birthday. He joined the coal-fired battle cruiser HMS Tiger just weeks before the Allies declared victory. He stayed with the Royal Navy after the end of the first world war, sailing all over the world, including Cape Town and Jakarta.
He was working as chief stoker on the mine sweeper HMS Salamander when World War II broke out, and he took part in the evacuation of Dunkirk in 1940, making five trips to the beaches to rescue exhausted Allied soldiers.
He left the navy in 1945 and opened a tobacco and hairdressing shop in Devon.
Character actor played Ellen's dad
Steven Gilborn, 72, an actor best known for playing the father of Ellen DeGeneres' character on the 1990s sitcom "Ellen," died of cancer Jan. 2 at his home in North Chatham, N.Y.
His television roles included portraying the math teacher on "The Wonder Years" and recurring parts on such series as "The Practice," "Picket Fences" and "L.A. Law."
Among his film credits are "Nurse Betty" (2000) and "The Brady Bunch Movie" (1995).
Born July 15, 1936, in New Rochelle, N.Y., Gilborn earned a bachelor's degree in English from Swarthmore College in 1958 and a doctorate in dramatic literature from Stanford University in 1969.
He taught drama at UC Berkeley, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Columbia University before he decided to try to make it as a stage actor in 1970.
His stage roles included Prospero in "The Tempest" and Benedick in "Much Ado About Nothing" at the Folger Theatre in Washington, D.C.
For many years, Gilborn acted in and directed plays for the Interact Theatre Company in North Hollywood.
Robert F. Brunner
Composer wrote music for Disney
Robert Francis Brunner, 70, a staff composer for Walt Disney Studios who scored such films as "That Darn Cat!" and "The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes," died Jan. 5 in his sleep at his Moorpark home, said Barbara Singleterry, his niece. A cause of death was not disclosed.
While working for Disney from 1963 to 1980, Brunner also composed the scores for "Blackbeard's Ghost," "The Boatniks," "The Barefoot Executive" and about 15 other movies. He also wrote music for dozens of episodes of the "Walt Disney" TV anthology series.
In the 1984 book "How to Be Like Walt," Brunner credited Walt Disney with teaching him to "never settle for less" than the highest quality.
For 15 years, beginning in 1956, Brunner was the conductor and commanding officer of the state's 562nd Air National Guard Band. He often recruited studio musicians to serve in the reserve unit.
Born Jan. 9, 1938, in Pasadena, Brunner grew up in Brentwood and was leading his own 20-piece dance band at 11, his niece said. He studied music for a year at UCLA.
Wife of comedian Jonathan Winters
Eileen Winters, 84, comedian Jonathan Winters' wife of 60 years, died after a long battle with breast cancer Sunday evening at home in Montecito, said their son, Jay.
The couplemet at the Dayton Art Institute after World War II. In 1949, the year after they were married, Eileen encouraged her funny husband to enter an amateur talent show.
"The first time I heard him talk," she later recalled, "my jaw began hanging open. Did he make up all those things by himself?"
Peter H. Dominick Jr.
Architect designed Disney park hotels
Peter H. Dominick Jr., 67, a Denver architect whose designs included the Grand Californian Hotel in Anaheim and other Disney theme park hotels, died Jan. 1 of a heart attack during a cross-country ski outing in Aspen, Colo.
Dominick was president and chairman of 4240 Architecture, a firm based in Denver and Chicago. He had previously led the Urban Design Group, based in Denver.
Besides designing the Craftsman-style hotel at Disney's California Adventure theme park, Dominick was responsible for the Wilderness and Animal Kingdom lodges at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla.
He designed office buildings, shopping centers and homes, mainly in Colorado, as well as the Great Platte River Road Monument that spans Interstate 80 in Kearney, Neb.
With other developers, he was also involved in the revitalization of the downtown Denver neighborhood that was dubbed LoDo.
Dominick was born June 9, 1941, in New York City, one of four children of Nancy Parks and Peter Hoyt Dominick Sr. When he was 5, the family moved to Colorado. His father, a Republican, was elected to the U.S. Senate and represented the state from 1963 to 1975.
Dominick earned a bachelor's degree in 1963 from Yale University and later received a master's in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania.
-- Staff and Wire ReportsCopyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times