Former Glendale mayor and TV, radio host
Larry Zarian, 73, a former mayor of Glendale and the first Armenian American to be elected to the City Council, died of blood cancer Thursday at Glendale Adventist Medical Center.
Zarian also served as a board member for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and as a state transportation commissioner. He had his own local cable television show, "The Larry Zarian Forum," and also had hosted a talk-radio program on KIEV that focused on political issues.
In 1983, Zarian became the first Armenian American elected to the Glendale City Council and served for 16 years. He had four one-year terms in the ceremonial post of mayor of Glendale, whose statistics show at least 27% of the city's population is of Armenian descent.
Zarian, who was born in Tehran on Oct. 20, 1937, immigrated as a youth with his family to the United States. After graduating from high school in Massachusetts, he moved to Glendale.
He worked in the jewelry business, owned a chain of department stores and became a real estate investor.
Veteran actor co-founded Melrose Theatre
Paul Kent, 80, a veteran stage, film and television actor who co-founded the Melrose Theatre and served as its artistic director for many years, died Oct. 7 at his home in Los Angeles. He had multiple myeloma, according to publicist Dale Olson.
A New York native, Kent trained as an actor at the Pasadena Playhouse and with Sanford Meisner, eventually becoming an assistant to the noted acting coach.
He and a group of partners formed the Melrose Theatre in the mid-1960s, and over the decades it became known for its regional stage productions. Notable plays staged at the Melrose included "Tooth of the Lion," "Father's Day," " Boy Meets Girl," "Telemachus Clay," "Diary of a Madmen," "Witnesses" and others.
Besides acting in local theatrical productions, Kent worked steadily on television with appearances in such series as "Mod Squad," "Marcus Welby, M.D.," "Lou Grant," "T.J. Hooker," "Hotel," "Falcon Crest" and the soap opera "Port Charles." He had roles in two "Helter Skelter" TV movies playing two different parts in the 1976 and 2004 productions, and he also had a part in "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" (1982).
Pianist performed with jazz and pop greats
Marty Harris, 77, a pianist who performed with such jazz and pop greats as Benny Goodman and Diana Ross, died of colon cancer Thursday at his Toluca Lake home, said his wife, Bonnie.
Born Dec. 9, 1933, in New Jersey, Harris was reared in Florida and studied the piano in high school. He served in the Navy in the early 1950s and moved to the San Fernando Valley in 1961.
Since the 1950s, he had played with such jazz names as Woody Herman, Clark Terry, Bob Cooper and Anita O'Day. Harris also accompanied the singer Tom Jones and had frequently performed locally with trumpeter and singer Jack Sheldon.
Drawn to the rhythms of jazz from a young age, Harris told The Times in 1997: "I liked the beat; it just felt good. Then someone showed me how to play a little bit, and I got to be pretty good."
—Los Angeles Times staff and wire reportsCopyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun