Franca Sozzani dies in Milan at age 66

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MILAN — Longtime Vogue Italia editor in chief Franca Sozzani died on Thursday. She was 66.

Born in Mantua, Italy, in 1950, she headed the Italian magazine for 28 years, shaping it into one of the most influential magazines globally.

Sozzani touched on topics deemed taboos by others, dedicating whole issues to themes such as "Curvy," or "Black," the obsession with plastic surgery, the BP Gulf oil spill or domestic violence.

Earlier this month, Sozzani received the First Swarovski Award for Positive Change in London, and in September, a movie on her life directed by her son Francesco Carrozzini premiered in Venice at the city's Film Festival.

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Franca Sozzani, Vogue Italia editor in chief
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Franca Sozzani, Vogue Italia editor in chief
PARIS, FRANCE - DECEMBER 06: (L-R) Princess Caroline of Hanover, Franca Sozzani and Anna Wintour attend the 'Chanel Collection des Metiers d'Art 2016/17 : Paris Cosmopolite' show at the Ritz Hotel on December 6, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 13: Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Italia Franca Sozzani attends the 'Franca: Chaos and Creation' New York Screening at Metrograph on October 13, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Ben Gabbe/Getty Images)
Fashion editor Franca Sozzani poses before the Christian Dior 2017 Spring/Summer ready-to-wear collection fashion show, on September 30, 2016 in Paris. / AFP / PATRICK KOVARIK (Photo credit should read PATRICK KOVARIK/AFP/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 24: Anna Wintour and Franca Sozzani attend the dinner honouring Bottega Veneta's Tomas Maier 15th anniversary as Creative Director during Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2017 on September 24, 2016 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 22: Franca Sozzani attends the Prada show during Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2017 on September 22, 2016 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images for Prada)
VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Valentino Garavani and Franca Sozzani attend the premiere of 'Franca: Chaos And Creation' during the 73rd Venice Film Festival at Sala Giardino on September 2, 2016 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Elisabetta A. Villa/WireImage)
VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Francesco Carrozzini and Franca Sozzani attend the premiere of 'Franca: Chaos And Creation' during the 73rd Venice Film Festival at Sala Giardino on September 2, 2016 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Ernesto Ruscio/Getty Images)
VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 2 : Franca Sozzani attends the photocall FRANCA : Chaos and Creation during the 73rd Venice Film Festival on August 31, 2016 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Alessandra Benedetti - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Franca Sozzani arrives at Lido during the 73rd Venice Film Festival on September 2, 2016 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Venturelli/GC Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 07: Pierpaolo Piccoli, Franca Sozzani and Maria Grazia Chiuri attend the Fendi Roma 90 Years Anniversary Welcome Cocktail at Palazzo Carpegna on July 7, 2016 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Victor Boyko/Getty Images for FENDI)
MILAN, ITALY - JUNE 07: Franca Sozzani attends Convivio 2016 photocall on June 7, 2016 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - MAY 22: Franca Sozzani attends the 'La Traviata' Premiere at Teatro Dell'Opera on May 22, 2016 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Ernesto Ruscio/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 07: Soko and Franca Sozzani attend the Giambattista Valli show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2016/2017 on March 7, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - DECEMBER 10: Franca Sozzani, Afef Jnifen arrive at Vogue Christmas dinner on December 10, 2015 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Robino Salvatore/GC Images)
DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 30: Franca Sozzani attends the Gala event during the Vogue Fashion Dubai Experience 2015 at Armani Hotel Dubai on October 30, 2015 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Luca Teuchmann/Getty Images for Vogue and The Dubai Mall)
ROME, ITALY - DECEMBER 01: Karl Lagerfeld and Franca Sozzani attend the Chanel Metiers d'Art 2015/16 Fashion Show at Cinecitta on December 1, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Ernesto Ruscio/Getty Images)
DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 29: Italien Vogue editor-in-chief Franca Sozzani speaks on stage during a press conference to launch the Vogue Fashion Dubai Experience 2015 at Symphony Ballroom, The Address Downtown Hotel on October 29, 2015 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by John Phillips/Getty Images for Vogue and The Dubai Mall)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 28: Goodwill ambassador Franca Sozzani attends the Fashion 4 Development's 5th annual Official First Ladies luncheon at The Pierre Hotel on September 28, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for Fashion 4 Development)
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 25: Anna Wintour (L) and Franca Sozzani (R) attend the Versace show during the Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2016 on September 25, 2015 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 24: Franca Sozzani and Jonathan Newhouse attend the Max Mara show during the Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2016 on September 24, 2015 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images)
VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Franca Sozzani attends the opening ceremony and premiere of 'Everest' during the 72nd Venice Film Festival on September 2, 2015 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Venturelli/WireImage)
(LtoR) US singer Lana Del Rey, her partner Francesco Carrozzini and Italian journalist Franca Sozzani leave the Hotel Des Iles Borromees for the religious wedding ceremony of Pierre Casiraghi, Prince Albert II of Monaco's nephew, with Beatrice Borromeo on August 1, 2015, in Stresa, on the Lake Maggiore in northern Italy. Casiraghi and Borromeo had their civil wedding in Monaco on July 25. AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE (Photo credit should read GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 13: Franca Sozzani attends the Who Is On Next? fashion show, as a part of AltaRoma AltaModa Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2015/16 at Palazzo Delle Esposizioni on July 13, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Ernesto Ruscio/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 10: Franca Sozzani attends 'Couture / Sculpture' Vernissage Cocktail honoring Azzedine Alaia in the history of fashion as part of AltaRoma AltaModa Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2015/16 at Galleria Borghese on July 10, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 09: (L-R) Franca Sozzani, Giancarlo Giammetti, Gwyneth Paltrow and Valentino Garavani attend the Valentinos 'Mirabilia Romae' haute couture collection fall/winter 2015 2016 at Piazza Mignanelli on July 9, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 09: Franca Sozzani attends the Valentinos 'Mirabilia Romae' haute couture collection fall/winter 2015 2016 at Piazza Mignanelli on July 9, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images)
ROME, ITALY - JULY 13: (L-R) Silvia Venturini Fendi and Franca Sozzani attend the Who Is On Next? fashion show, as a part of AltaRoma AltaModa Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2015/16 at Palazzo Delle Esposizioni on July 13, 2015 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Ernesto Ruscio/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 08: Franca Sozzani attends the Fendi show as part of Paris Fashion Week Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2015/2016 on July 8, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images for Fendi)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 08: Franca Sozzani attends the Elie Saab show as part of Paris Fashion Week Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2015/2016. Held at Pavillon Cambon Capucines on July 8, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 05: Franca Sozzani attends the Versace show as part of Paris Fashion Week Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2015/2016 on July 5, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by Marc Piasecki/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 01: Maria Grazia Chiuri, Franca Sozzani, Pierpaolo Piccioli, and Valeria Golino attend the 2015 CFDA Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)
VIENNA, AUSTRIA - MAY 16: Franca Sozzani and Kelly Osbourne on stage during the Life Ball 2015 show at City Hall on May 16, 2015 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Mathias Kniepeiss/Life Ball 2015/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - MAY 03: Franca Sozzani attends the Fondazione Prada Opening on May 3, 2015 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images for Fondazione Prada)
VIENNA, AUSTRIA - MAY 16: Franca Sozzani and Bill Roedy attend the AIDS Solidarity Gala at Hofburg Vienna on May 16, 2015 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Thomas Niedermueller/Life Ball 2015/Getty Images)
TURIN, ITALY - MAY 02: Paola Manfrin, Warly Tomei Mantegazza, Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Franca Sozzani, Francesca Malgara and Umberta Gnutti Beretta attend Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Premio StellaRe at Sheikha Al Mayassa on May 2, 2015 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Venturelli/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 05: Franca Sozzani arrives at Balmain Fashion Show during Paris Fashion Week Fall Winter 2015/2016 on March 5, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 10: Editor-In-Chief of Vogue Italia Franca Sozzani attends the Valentino Sala Bianca 945 Event on December 10, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 19: Franca Sozzani (L) and Valentino Garavani attend The New York Ball: The 20th Anniversary Benefit For The European School Of Economics at Trump Tower on November 19, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Monica Schipper/FilmMagic)
DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 31: Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Italia Franca Sozzani during the 'New Generation In Fashion' Fashion Talks at the Vogue Fashion Dubai Experience on October 31, 2014 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for Vogue & The Dubai Mall)
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Designers and industry leaders have been posting tributes to the late editor on Instagram and Twitter.

American Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour wrote the following in a blogpost on Vogue.com. "In private, Franca was warm, clever, funny, and someone who could give the Sphinx a run for its money when it comes to keeping a confidence. She was also the hardest-working person I have known, and with an envy-inducing ease with multitasking. She made everything she worked on appear effortless, regardless of whether it was an event for several hundred; a whirlwind trip to Africa to support the continent's emerging designers, or the creation of yet another newsworthy, provocative and utterly spellbinding issue of Italian Vogue."

"Farewell to Franca Sozzani, a woman who believed fashion could be more. 'We can't always be writing about flowers,' she said,'" tweeted Vanessa Friedman of The New York Times.

Designer Donatella Versace posted an Instagram photo, captioned: "Ciao Franca, my dearest friend. You will be in my heart forever."

The screening of the documentary on Sozzani in September reflected her stature in the fashion industry, with guests ranging from Azzedine Alaïa and Miuccia Prada to Renzo Rosso, Diego Della Valle, Riccardo Tisci and Donatella Versace.

The screening was followed by a dinner held by Valentino in her honor, in the presence of Valentino Garavani, Giancarlo Giammetti and the brand's sole creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli as well as its chief executive officer Stefano Sassi.

The likes of Karl Lagerfeld, Bruce Weber, Marina Abramović, Jeff Koons and Baz Luhrmann appeared in the film, expressing their views on Sozzani's work and persona. Interviewed ahead of the screening, in her staple understated manner, she said the comments were more controversial than, as she put it, hagiographic.

"I didn't want a 'santino' [holy picture] of me, or anyone saying I am a genius. There are people I've had clashes with," Sozzani told WWD. To wit, Condé Nast chairman and chief executive officer Jonathan Newhouse's comments that he "thought she'd taken Vogue too far. I said, 'If you keep going in this direction, I might have to fire you.'"

To be sure, Sozzani courted controversy—and appeared unfazed by the commotion she often caused. Never afraid to speak her mind, Sozzani channeled her views on Vogue.it, and sharing her opinion on her blog, bonding with readers around the world. At the screening of the film in Venice, Sozzani received the red carpet treatment—just as much as any Hollywood A-listers, with young fans clamoring for selfies and screaming for autographs. While her looks conveyed a delicate image, with her petite frame and long, wavy blonde hair and azure eyes, Sozzani was determined and set on leaving her mark in the world, as she says in the film, not content with being a bourgeois housewife. In a WWD interview in 2011, Sozzani stated her views for Vogue Italia very simply, saying that what differentiates the magazine is that "it tells its own stores, it does it in a way that is sometimes stronger than other magazines. I would say the strength of Vogue Italia is its creativity and image." She wondered how to translate the magazine's photos and content online, which quickly became a success, driving sales at newsstands, too.

See More on Franca Sozzani:
Franca Sozzani Discusses Reasoning Behind Vogue Italia's February Issue by Mario Testino
Fashion at the Forefront in Venice
Fashion Designers Expected to Flock to Screening of Franca Sozzani Film at Venice Festival
Franca Sozzani Film Screening Draws Anna Wintour, Naomi Campbell and More

In memoriam: Everyone we've lost in 2016:

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Notable deaths in 2016
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Notable deaths in 2016

Dale Bumpers

The American politician who served as the 38th Governor of Arkansas and in the United States Senate died on January 1. He was 90. 

(Photo by Scott J. Ferrell/Congressional Quarterly/Getty Images)

Craig Strickland

A country singer, Craig Strickland was the frontman for Backroad Anthem. He was 29. 

(Photo by David Becker/ACM2016/Getty Images for dcp)

David Bowie

A legendary English singer, songwriter and actor, David Bowie died on January 10. He was 69. 

(Photo credit RALPH GATTI/AFP/Getty Images)

Monte Irvin

The Baseball Hall of Fame outfielder died January 11. He was 96.

(Photo by Sporting News/Sporting News via Getty Images)

Rene Angelil

A Canadian musical producer, talent manager and singer, Rene Angelil was also the manager and husband of singer Celine Dion. He was 73. 

(Photo by Stephane Cardinale/Corbis via Getty Images)

Alan Rickman

An English actor and director, Rickman was known playing a variety of roles including Hans Gruber in "Die Hard" as well as Severus Snape in the Harry Potter series. He was 69. 

(Photo by Phil Dent/Redferns)

Glenn Frey

The singer, guitarist, Frey was a founding member of The Eagles. He was 67. 

(Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)

Abe Vigoda

The well-known actor, Vigoda was best known for roles in "The Godfather" and "Barney Miller." He was 94. 

(Photo by Charles Eshelman/FilmMagic)

Paul Kantner

The founding member of Jefferson Airplane died January 28. He was 74.

(Photo by Steve Snowden/Getty Images)

Maurice White

The founder of Earth, Wind, and Fire, died on February 3. He was 74.

(Photo by Steve Grayson/WireImage)

Edgar Mitchell

The Apollo 14 astronaut, who was the sixth man to walk on the moon, died on February 4. He was 85. 

(Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

Dave Mirra

The famed BMX biker host of an MTV reality show died Feb. 4. He was 41.

(Photo by Debra L Rothenberg/FilmMagic via Getty)

Antonin Scalia

The Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States died on February 13. He was 79.

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Harper Lee

The author of the literary classic "To Kill a Mockingbird," died on February 19. She was 89.

(Photo by Bettmann via Getty Images)

George Kennedy

Best Supporting Actor winner for "Cool Hand Luke" and also co-star in "The Dirty Dozen" died on February 28. He was 91.

(Photo by Art Zelin/Getty Images)

Ashley Guindon

Guindon was responding to a domestic violence call on her first day on the job on February 27 when she was fatally shot. Two other officers were injured. She was 28.

(Photo via REUTERS/Prince William Co PD/Handout via Reuters)

Joey Feek

An American country singer, Joey Feek performed with her husband Rory Feek before passing away after battling cancer. She was 40.

(Photo by Frederick Breedon IV/WireImage)

Pat Conroy

Author of several critically acclaimed novels, Pat Conroy penned "The Prince of Tides" and "The Great Santini." He was 70.

(Photo by Jeffrey Vock/Getty Images)

Nancy Reagan

The actress-turned-first lady died on March 6. She was 94.

(Photo courtesy of the Ronald Reagan Presidental Library/Getty Images)

George Martin

The producer for the Beatles, often called The Fifth Beatle, died on March 8. He was 90.

(Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)

Frank Sinatra, Jr. 

The singer and son of Ol' Blue Eyes, died on March 16. He was 72.

(Photo by Martin Mills/Getty Images)

Allen Jacobs

On March 18, Jacobs was shot by a 17-year-old boy he was interviewing about a weapons purchase. One other officer was injured. He was 28.

(Photo via REUTERS/Greenville Police Department/Handout via Reuters)

Rob Ford

The former mayor of Toronto died on March 22. He was 46.

(Photo credit GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/Getty Images)

Malik Taylor, a.k.a. Phife Dawg

The rapper and co-founder of the legendary hip-hop group A Tribe Called Quest died on March 23. He was 45.

(Photo by Isaiah Trickey/FilmMagic via Getty)

Garry Shandling

The legendary stand-up comedian died on March 24. He was 66.

(Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)

Patty Duke

The Oscar and Emmy-winning actress, former child star and mother of "Lord of the Rings" actor Sean Astin, died on March 29. She was 69.

(Photo by Bobby Bank/WireImage)

Chad Dermyer

During a training exercise at a Greyhound bus station on March 31, Trooper Dermyer was shot by a man who walked away from his luggage. The man was not a part of the exercise. He was 37.

(Photo via REUTERS/Virginia State Police/Handout)

Merle Haggard

Country music legend Merle Haggard died on his 79th birthday of complications from pneumonia.

(Photo by Paul Natkin/Getty Images)

Will Smith

The former first-round NFL draft pick who played for the New Orlens Saints' Super Bowl-winning team, was shot to death after a traffic accident. He was 34.

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Doris Roberts

The actress, best known for her role as Marie Barone on the sitcom "Everybody Loves Raymond," died on April 17 at the age of 90.

(Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

Michelle McNamara

The crime writer who founded the website TrueCrimeStory.com died on April 21 at the age of 46. She was the wife of comedian Patton Oswalt. No cause of death was provided.

(Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)

Prince

The incredibly talented and influential musician was found dead in his Minnesota home on April 21 from an accidental overdose of the opioid fentanyl. He was 57-years-old.

(Photo by Richard E. Aaron/Redferns)

Charles Keating IV

The former student-athlete, grandson of a banker and U.S. NAVY Seal was the third American service member to be killed in direct combat since the fight against ISIS began in 2014. He was 31.

(Photo courtesy U.S. Navy/Handout photo via Reuters)

William Schallert

The actor, who played roles in "Star Trek" and "The Patty Duke Show," among many others, died on May 8 at the age of 93.

(Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)

Susannah Mushatt Jones

Ms. Jones was a "supercentenarian," meaning she was the world's oldest living person and last living American born in the 1800's. At the time of her death she was living in East New York, Brooklyn, and had more than 100 nieces and nephews. She was 116.

(Photo By: Debbie Egan-Chin/NY Daily News via Getty Images)

Guy Clark

The Grammy-winning songwriter died after a long illness on May 17 at the age of 74.

(Photo by Ebet Roberts/Redferns via Getty Images)

Morley Safer

The CBS News legend, who hosted "60 Minutes," died at the age of 84 on May 19.

(Photo via REUTERS/Stephen Chernin/File)

Alan Young

The actor died on May 19 at the age of 96. He was best known for his role as Wilbur Post in the TV series "Mr. Ed."

(Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

John Berry (second from right)

One of the original members of the Beastie Boys died on May 19 at the age of 52, following a long battle with dementia.

(Photo via Wikipedia)

Harambe

After a 3-year-old boy climbed down into an enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, Harambe the gorilla started to drag and hover over the child. Fearing for the boy's life, a zoo worker shot and killed Harambe. He was 17.

(Photo via REUTERS/Cincinnati Zoo/Handout via Reuters)

Muhammad Ali

The American boxing legend, widely revered as "The Greatest," is an icon in sports and activism. Ali, born Cassius Clay, died on June 3 at age 74 after a long battle with Parkinson's disease.

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Newsmakers)

Kimbo Slice

Professional mixed martial artist Kevin Ferguson, better known as Kimbo Slice, rose to internet fame for backyard fights before fighting professional. The Bahamian-born American was reportedly diagnosed with heart failure and informed he needed a heart transplant days before his death in Margate, Florida. He died at age 42 on June 6.

(Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images)

Gordie Howe

The NHL legend, known as "Mr. Hockey," scored 801 goals during his professional career and won four Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings. He died on June 10 at the age of 88.

(Photo by Bettmann via Getty Images)

Christina Grimmie

The 22-year-old singer rose to fame following her third place finish on NBC's sixth season of "The Voice," The young star was shot and killed while signing autographs after an Orlando concert on June 11.

(Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting victims

On June 12, 29-year-old Omar Mateen killed 49 people and wounded 53 others in a terrorist attack/hate crime inside Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Click here to see a full gallery of those victims. 

(Al Diaz/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)

Michu Meszaros

The actor who played "Alf" in the popular '80s sitcom died at the age of 77 on June 12.

(Photo via IMDB)

Lane Graves

While at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Matt and Melissa watched their son get attacked and dragged under water by an alligator. After 17 hours, officials found Lane's body and found traumatic injuries and drowning as the causes of death. He was 2.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Anton Yelchin

The 27-year-old actor, who played Pavel Chekov in the most recent "Star Trek" films, died from a freak car accident outside his home on June 19.

(Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Pat Summitt

The head coach of the University of Tennessee's women's basketball team turned the program around during her 38 years at the university and ultimately became the winningest coach in NCAA history with 1,098 career wins. The coaching icon died on June 28at the age of 64, just five years after being diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

(Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

Alton Sterling

Alton Sterling's name made national headlines after he was shot several times at point blank range by two Baton Rouge Police Department officers in Louisiana, prompting nationwide protests from the Black Lives Matter movement. He was 37.

(Photo via East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office/Handout via Reuters)

Philando Castile

Philando Castile was fatally shot by a Minnesota police officer after being pulled over in a St. Paul suburb. According to his girlfriend who was in the car with him during the shooting, Castile was reaching for his identification after telling the officer he was armed. He was 32.

(Photo via REUTERS/Eric Miller)

Dallas Police Officers

Five Dallas police officers -- Senior Cpl. Lorne Ahrens, Officer Michael Krol, Sgt. Michael Smith, Officer Brent Thompson, and Officer Patrick Zamarripa -- were shot and killed by a gunman during a protest on July 7. The gunman had expressed desire to kill white people and white police officers out of anger for the Black Lives Matter movement.

(Photo by Gary Miller/WireImage)

Brad Garafola

Three Baton Rouge police officers -- Sheriff's Deputy Brad Garafola, Officer Matthew Gerald, and Cpl. Montrell Jackson -- were shot and killed on July 17 by a gunman in the aftermath of the police shooting of Baton Rouge resident Alton Sterling and related protests.

(East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office/Handout via REUTERS)

Montrell Jackson

Three Baton Rouge police officers -- Sheriff's Deputy Brad Garafola, Officer Matthew Gerald, and Cpl. Montrell Jackson -- were shot and killed on July 17 by a gunman in the aftermath of the police shooting of Baton Rouge resident Alton Sterling and related protests.

(Baton Rouge Police Department/Handout via REUTERS)

Matthew Gerald

Three Baton Rouge police officers -- Sheriff's Deputy Brad Garafola, Officer Matthew Gerald, and Cpl. Montrell Jackson -- were shot and killed on July 17 by a gunman in the aftermath of the police shooting of Baton Rouge resident Alton Sterling and related protests.

(Baton Rouge Police Department/Handout via REUTERS)

Garry Marshall

The multitalented Hollywood legend was credited with creating the hit television series, "Happy Days," creating "The Odd Couple" and directing "Pretty Woman." He was 81.

(Photo by Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images)

Youree Dell Harris

Commonly referred to as "Miss Cleo," Dell was the iconic face of psychic hotline commercials in the late 1990s. She was 53.

(Video via YouTube)

David Huddleston

Huddleston had a prolific acting career in both television and film, most famously recognized for his role as the Big Lebowski in "The Big Lebowski." He was 85.

(Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images)

Vanessa Marcotte

Google employee Vanessa Marcotte's body was found after she went for a jog while home visiting her mother in Princeton, Mass. She was 27.

(Photo by David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

John Saunders

Saunders was a longtime ESPN broadcaster and Sportscenter anchor. He was 61.

(Photo by Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)

Kenny Baker

The English actor was best known for portraying the character R2-D2 in the Star Wars series. He was 81.

(Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)

Lou Pearlman

The American record producer and fraudster was best known for managing hit boy bands Backstreet Boys and NSYNC. He was 62.

(Photo by Ron Davis/Getty Images)

Gene Wilder

Born Jerome Silberman, the film and theater comic actor famously brought joy to movie lovers everywhere with his roles as Willy Wonka and Dr. Frankenstein. He was 82.

(Photo by robbie jack/Corbis via Getty Images)

Jon Polito

In his 35-year television and film career, Jon Polito amassed over 200 credits -- known best for his roles in "Barton Fink" and "The Big Lebowski." He was 65.

(Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)

Alexis Arquette

The transgender actress and activist was most widely known for her Boy George-inspired character in "The Wedding Singer."

(Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)

Edward Albee

An American playwright, Albee was best known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning play, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" He was 88.

(Photo by Wendell Teodoro/WireImage)

Charmian Carr

The actress and singer was best known for her role as eldest Von Trapp daughter, Liesl, in the 1965 film version of The Sound of Music. She was 73.

(Photo by Dick Darrell/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Shawty Lo

Born Carlos Rico Walker, the hip hop artist was a founding member of the group "D4L" and best known for his single debut album, "Dey Know." He was 40.

(Photo by Marcus Ingram/Getty Images)

Bill Nunn

Nunn was a character actor best known for his portrayal of Radio Raheem in Spike Lee's 1989 film "Do the Right Thing." He was 62.

(Photo by: Matt Dinerstein/USA Network/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Jose Fernandez

A Cuban-born MLB pitcher, Jose Fernandez was headed for a career Fernandez tragically died this year in a fatal boating accident off the coast of Miami. He was 24.

(Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

Arnold Palmer

Seen by many as the greatest golfer in the sport's history, Palmer was known for his down-to-earth persona and ability to transform the once exclusive recreation into a common pastime. He was 87.

(Photo via REUTERS/Robert Galbraith/File Photo)

Lesley Zerebny and Jose Vega

Zerebny, 27, and Vega, 63, were both shot and killed on October 8 when responding to a domestic disturbance in Palm Springs, California.

(Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

Dylan Rieder

Both a model and skateboarder, Dylan Rieder passed away after battling Leukemia. He was 28.

(Photo by Ray Tamarra/Getty Images)

Tommy Ford

Best known for his role as Tommy Strawn in the sitcom Martin, Tommy Ford died in October. He was 52.

(Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images)

Bhumibol Adulyadej

Known as King Bhumibol the Great, Bhumibol Adulyadej was the longest-serving monarch in the world at the time of his death, having been the Thai king since 1946. He was 88.

(Photo via REUTERS/Damir Sagolj/File Photo)

Tom Hayden 

An anti-war and civil rights activist in the 1960s, Tom Hayden married fellow liberal Jane Fonda and eventually served as a lawmaker in the California legislature. He was 76.

(Photo by Paul Warner/Getty Images)

Benjamin Marconi

Detective Benjamin Marconi, 50, was shot while sitting in his patrol car outside of his police station in Texas on November 20.

(Courtesy of San Antonio Police Deparment/Handout via REUTERS)

Florence Henderson

One of the most famous TV moms in American history, Henderson was known by most as character "Carol Brady" from "Brady Bunch"

(Photo by Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Fidel Castro

A famous Cuban politician and revolutionary figure, Fidel Castro ruled Cuba for nearly 50 years as prime minister and president until his retirement in 2009. He was 90.

(Photo by Sven Creutzmann/Mambo Photography/Getty Images)

Peter Vaughan

The British actor died at age 93. He is most known for his role as Maester Aemon in the HBO hit series "Game of Thrones" from 2011-2015.

(Photo by Antony Jones/UK Press via Getty Images)

Greg Lake

A member of the XXX band Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Greg Lake died after “a long and stubborn battle with cancer." He was 69.

(Photo by Roberto Serra - Iguana Press/Redferns via Getty Images)

John Glenn

A member of NASA's "Mercury Seven," John Glenn was the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth and eventually became a politician, serving as a U.S. senator from Ohio. He was 95.

(Courtesy NASA/Handout via REUTERS)

Alan Thicke

The actor, known best for his role in 'Growing Pains,' died on December 13 at age 69. 

(Photo via REUTERS/Danny Moloshok)

Craig Sager

The legendary NBA reporter passed away after a battle with cancer. 

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Zsa Zsa Gabor

The Hungarian-American actress and socialite died on December 18.

(Photo by Ron Davis/Getty Images)

George Michael

The singer and LGBT advocate passed away on Christmas Day. 

(Photo via REUTERS/Dylan Martinez/Files)

Carrie Fisher

The actress, best known for her portrayal of Princess Leia in the 'Star Wars' movies, suffered a heart attack and died at age 60. 

(Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)

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