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Milestones, Dec. 27, 1971

3 minute read

Divorced. Jack Jones, 33, low-key nightclub and recording star (Wives and Lovers, The Impossible Dream); and Gretchen Roberts, 21, a former airline stewardess and Jones’ third wife, after Model Lee Larance and Actress Jill St. John; ending one year of marriage, no children; in Los Angeles.

Died. Dick Tiger, 42, the Ibo tribesman who punched his way to the world middleweight and light heavyweight boxing titles; of cancer of the liver; in Aba, Nigeria. Tiger, whose real name was Dick Ihetu, was taught to box by British army officers in Nigeria before he migrated to New York City in 1959. Three years later he knocked out Middleweight Champion Gene Fullmer. By 1966 he had moved up a class and took the light heavyweight title from José Torres. After losing the title in 1968 Tiger periodically visited his home to train soldiers for the rebel Biafran army. Briefly employed as a museum guard in Manhattan, Tiger returned to Africa for good last July.

Died. Robert Tyre (“Bobby”) Jones Jr., 69, only golf champion ever to take the sport’s Grand Slam by winning the British Amateur, British Open, U.S. Amateur and U.S. Open in one year; in Atlanta. The Jones family home was located on the grounds of a suburban Atlanta golf club, and young Bobby was weaned on putters and par. Playing as an amateur—he was a practicing attorney—Jones ruled the fairways during golf’s “Golden Age.” Between 1923 and 1930 he was thirteen times a winner in major tournaments. Though his Grand Slam in 1930 marked the official end of his career, he continued to play until a crippling spinal disorder forced him to leave the links for the last time in 1948.

Died. David Sarnoff, 80, the radio-TV pioneer who organized the National Broadcasting Company and became head of RCA Corp. (see BUSINESS).

Died. General Richard Mulcahy, 85, Irish soldier-politician and perennial foe of Eamon de Valera; in Dublin. Mulcahy dropped his medical studies to fight alongside De Valera during the 1916 Easter Rebellion. When the British recognized the Irish Free State as a dominion five years later, the austere teetotaler led the national forces that crushed De Valera’s still dissatisfied Irish Republican Army in a bloody civil war. Mulcahy served in several governments before and after Ireland gained full independence. After his old rival became President in 1932, Mulcahy took the reins of the opposition Fine Gael Party. In 1948 he succeeded in forming an improbable six-party coalition that temporarily ousted the old Taoiseach.

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