Big Bank Hank, one third of pioneering rap group the Sugarhill Gang, has passed away from cancer at the age of 58. David Mallie, manager of the group’s other members Wonder Mike and Master Gee, confirmed the rapper’s death to Rolling Stone, saying the two surviving members were informed of his death on Tuesday morning.
Daniel B. Meltzer, a writer and teacher and perfervid New Yorker who led the successful fight to rescue one of the city’s most grandiose showplaces, the cavernous Beacon Theater, from transformation into a discothèque, died on Nov. 6 in Manhattan. He was 74.
On Saturday mornings, Tom’s restaurant in Brooklyn is so popular that people line up outside just to be served old-fashioned diner cuisine like chocolate egg creams and all manner of pancakes. It has been that way for years, and until the owner, Gus Vlahavas, died this month at 76, the patrons’ patience was rewarded with the free coffee, cookies, sausage bits and orange slices he handed out while they waited.
Bernard Spitzer, a prominent New York City real estate developer and philanthropist who supported his son Eliot’s political career and at times became entangled in it, died on Saturday at his home in Manhattan. He was 90.
In 1933, Robert J. Mangum arrived in New York as an orphan of 13. As he told the story, he held his little sister by one hand and carried a satchel with all his belongings in the other.
For more than a generation, Joe Bragg was a tireless journalist whose words and voice constantly kept us abreast of local and world happenings. Then, as the Rev. Dr. Joseph Lee Bragg, he chose to comfort our souls and lift our spirits with his sermons. The omnipresent journalist and pacifying minister is no longer with us. He joined the ancestors Sept. 1 at age 75.
Ernesto Butcher, a soft-spoken Panamanian immigrant who effectively took over management of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, as its most experienced surviving operations officer, died on May 15 in Maplewood, N.J. He was 69.
Paul Gibson Jr., a lawyer and an airline executive who in 1974 became New York City’s first black deputy mayor, died on July 11 at his home in Jamaica, Queens. He was 86.
Alexander Tanger was an announcer at a radio station in Brooklyn, N.Y., when a news bulletin arrived on Dec. 7, 1941, and he told his listeners about the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Morris A. Adelman, an energy economist who marshaled free-market principles and hard data in arguing that the world’s oil supply was not running out, died May 8 at his home in Newton, Mass. He was 96. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he taught and researched for 65 years, announced the death on May 15.