1. Steve Jobs
On Oct. 5, the 56-year-old Apple co-founder and CEO died of a rare form of cancer on his pancreas. Following his passing, President Obama said "There may be no greater tribute to Steve's success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented."
2. Amy Winehouse
The British singer died of accidental alcohol poisoning July 23 at age 27. It was arguably an ending that had been telegraphed from the beginning of her fame.
3. Elizabeth Taylor
The American Film Institute "Female Legend," three-time Oscar winner, gay icon and AIDS activist died March 23 at the age of 79. Taylor, who died of congestive heart failure, was famed for her beauty, her eight marriages and her love of jewels.
4. Patrice O'Neal
The standup comedian died of complications from a stroke on Nov. 28 at the age of 41. Despite the fact that one of his last performances was on the "Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen," O'Neal, who had appeared on "The Office" and "Chappelle's Show," was beloved by other comedians.
5. Christopher Hitchens
The bon vivant and provocateur died Nov. 15 of complications from cancer. In his many articles, essays and books such as "God Is Not Great," Hitchens fearlessly opposed any force he saw as totalitarian and seemed to relish being contrarian, whether he was taking down Mother Teresa or backing the Iraq War.
6. Heavy D
A big man who styled himself as a Don Juan, the rapper and producer, 44, died Nov. 8 of unknown causes. Heavy D & the Boyz was the first to be signed to Uptown Records, one of the pioneers in bringing hip-hop and R&B together.
7. Ryan Dunn
Dunn, a star of "Jackass" and "Viva La Bam," died in a car crash June 20. He was 34 years old. Dunn had posted a photo of himself drinking hours before the accident, prompting film critic Roger Ebert to Tweet, "Friends don't let jackasses drink and drive." Alcohol and speed were factors in the accident.
8. Clarence Clemons
A saxophonist nonpareil, Clemons, 69, died June 18 of complications from a stroke. The joyous backbone of the E Street Band and Bruce Springsteen's platonic life partner (kidding!), he performed on songs such as "Born To Run" and "Dancing In The Dark" and was adored by fans.
9. Andy Whitfield
Whitfield died Sept. 11 at age 39 — 18 months after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He had starred in "Spartacus: Blood and Sand," a breakout production for the Starz network.
10. Andy Rooney
The crank from "60 Minutes" kept at it till he was almost 92; a month later, on Nov. 4, he died of complications from surgery. If there's an afterlife, he's found the little annoyances in it.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun