78, who helped found tax preparation giant H&R; Block Inc., died of heart failure yesterday at his home in Kansas City, Mo.
Mr. Bloch founded the company in 1955 with his brother, Henry, to take advantage of the vacuum left as the Internal Revenue Service stopped providing free income tax returns service.
The Kansas City-based company became the world's largest tax preparer, serving 21 million clients in 11 countries.
Mr. Bloch's other main focus was cancer. He received a diagnosis of terminal lung cancer in 1978, but was found to be cured after two years of aggressive treatment.
Inspired by his experience, Mr. Bloch and his wife, Annette, founded the R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation in 1980 in Kansas City and donated heavily to programs for cancer patients and survivors of the disease. The foundation has helped develop 20 parks around the country dedicated to cancer survivors.
53, a jazz pianist and professor of music who recorded with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and in his own ensembles, died of liver cancer Tuesday in New York City.
Director of jazz studies at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., in recent years, Mr. Williams was a member of Blakey's band from 1977 to 1981, appearing on 10 albums. He also recorded others as frontman, including Alter Ego (1984) and Awesome! (2000), with the Magical Trio.