The DeathList 1997

On today, gone tomorrow

DeathList Forums | DeathList Merchandise

The DeathList 1997

9 / 50 dead

1997 marks the tenth anniversary of the Death List. It is painstakingly prepared annually by a team of experts who have accumulated vast experience in the death arena. The list is now proving to be quite stable with many familiar near-death celebrities reappearing year after year. The list is in order of celebs most likely to die in 1997. Potential assassins, please take a careful look.EMail us with your comments and suggestions for next years list at

The 1997 List

Rank Name Age Description
1 Deng Xiaoping 95 Chinese Premiere
2 Mother Theresa 87 Saint
3 Pope John Paul II 77 Pope
4 Boris Yeltsin 66 Tsar
5 Queen Mother 97 Entertainer
6 Frank Sinatra 78 Singer
7 James Earl Ray 68 Assassin
8 Ronald Reagan 86 (former) Idiot
9 General Pinochet 82 Dictator
10 Jacques Cousteau 87 Aqua man
11 President Mobutu 67 Dictator
12 Jimmy Stewart 89 Actor
13 John Gielgud 89 Actor
14 Dr Hastings Banda 95 Dictator
15 Gene Sarazan 91 Golfer
16 Billy Wilder 91 Director
17 Bob Hope 94 Entertainer
18 Alec Guiness 79 Actor
19 Helen Wills Moody 87 Tennis
20 Catherine Cookson 86 Writer
21 Willie Whitelaw 79 Politician
22 Anthony Quinn 78 Actor
23 Barbara Cartland 92 Literary Genius
24 Lord Denning 94 Judge
25 Norman Wisdom 82 Comedian
26 Mickey Rooney 77 Actor
27 Lord Longford 92 Judge
28 Burgess Meredith 89 Actor
29 Don Bradman 85 Cricketer
30 Fats Domino 69 Singer
31 Perry Como 81 Singer
32 Quentin Crisp 85 'Performer'
33 Jeffrey Bernard 65 Drunkard
34 Kurt Waldheim 79 Nazi
35 Prince Rainier 74 Prince
36 Gregory Peck 81 Actor
37 Victor Borge 84 Comedian
38 Arthur C Clarke 80 Scientist / Author
39 John Mills 89 Actor
40 Katharine Hepburn 90 Actress
41 Edward Heath 81 ex PM
42 Gerald Ford 84 ex US President
43 Kirk Douglas 81 Actor
44 Joe Di Maggio 79 Baseball
45 Marlon Brando 73 Actor: The Godfather of Method
46 Thora Hird 86 Actress
47 Alistair Cooke 89 Broadcaster
48 Clive Dunn 77 DeathList Favourite
49 William Burroughs 83 Drugs Guru
50 Red Adair 82 Fire Fighter

Latest News

  • 6th December 1997

    George Chisholm dies

    Tombstone 8224b42b00f8262867d91adccfe4ebe304770f39b190dfbad7da9307d656e1e4

    1 appearance: 1993 (40)
    Age: 82, Jazz man, Cause of death: Unknown
  • 1st December 1997

    Stefan Grappelli dies

    Tombstone 8224b42b00f8262867d91adccfe4ebe304770f39b190dfbad7da9307d656e1e4

    2 appearances: 1990 (40), 1989 (25)
    Age: 89, Jazz Violinist, Cause of death: Unknown
  • 27th November 1997

    Dr Hastings Banda

    41 c77d648fc5586ab1cdd38039c312f513

    Its number nine! Dr Hastings Banda former dictator of Malawi and number 14 on this years list has succumbed to pneumonia and the curse of the Death List. Dr B had been reported as being 100 years old recently but the obituaries report him as only 99 years old - to us he's just Number 9! Just one more now to tie the record of ten.

    4 appearances: 1997 (14), 1996 (17), 1995 (25), 1994 (13)
    9th Death
    Age: 95, Dictator, Cause of death: Pneumonia
  • 14th November 1997

    "Fan Mail"

    Tombstone 8224b42b00f8262867d91adccfe4ebe304770f39b190dfbad7da9307d656e1e4

    The deathlist occasionally recieves messages of appreciation however the following email was recently received at Deathlist HQ:
    Subject: current deathlist
    Date: Thu, 13 Nov 1997 01:33:20 +0000
    From: Steven J Walden <>


    I am currently working as a freelance production assistant, on a filmthat is to star Mr Norman Wisdom, and Sir John Mills.I can reliably inform you that both gentlemen are in fine health;I know them personally.If they were to be made aware of their inclusion on this sickening listof yours, they would be likely to take offence, or worse, be upset.I suggest that you remove their names forthwith and no further reference be made;and that you, whoever you are, find someting more worthwhile to dowith your life than indulge in morbid speculation.

    SJ Walden.

    Obviously we were shocked to read this mail and have considered its contents very seriously. We had absolutely no idea that both gentlemen in question are in fine health. Had we have known this their inclusion on the deathlist would have been seriously in doubt. We can assure you Mr Walden that the situation will be reviewed at length in compiling the 1998 Deathlist. Of course if either of them, say, catches a cold please would you let us know and if there is any dangerous stunt work in the movie perhaps you could suggest the actors in question may wish to consider doing their own stunts. Many Thanks.

  • 10th September 1997

    Burgess Meredeath!

    24 ba246633e8ed5d6a4f54b6b83f3d61e7

    The Death List is on fire! Burgess Meredith, 89 year old actor who appeared in the Rocky movies and the Batman TV series, has died of Alzheimer's, Cancer and old age. An impressive collection of ailments from the number 28 selection. Its now 4 in a week, the 1995 record of 10 is a real possibility and we're starting to think we've created a monster. Keep watching those obituaries.

    1 appearance: 1997 (28)
    8th Death
    Age: 89, Actor, Cause of death: Alzheimers, Cancer and Old Age
  • 5th September 1997

    Tumble in the Jungle

    133 f8174fe0a593989620cae7d250385c10

    1 appearance: 1997 (11)
    7th Death
    Age: 67, Dictator, Cause of death: Cancer and stuff
  • 5th September 1997

    Jeffrey Bernard is (very) Unwell

    80 986be91c59a1dd9090fbb6057425b9b6

    It's non-stop action now!! Jeffrey bernard, the famous 65 year old Soho playwright and drinking guy, stopped his dialysis treatment for diabetes and died in his council flat. bernard always enjoyed a drink but perhaps his non-acceptance of Alcopops was the beginning of the end. He was a regular on the list was many years and was firmly in at number 33 this year. He was really very drunk.

    3 appearances: 1997 (33), 1995 (13), 1994 (47)
    6th Death
    Age: 65, Drunkard, Cause of death: General ill health
  • 4th September 1997

    T for Two!!

    123 399974d7771ae9cacf30a18b62037fd3

    Mother Theresa, number two on the 1997 death list, checks out with a badly timed demise! Mother T just put too much heart into the Princess Die tribute and soon after it just packed up. T has been a big favourite of the death list for the last few years and really wanted a piece of the Diana hype. Don't believe what you read in the media this IS the Mother of all Deaths.

    6 appearances: 1997 (2), 1995 (16), 1994 (5), 1992 (2), 1991 (2), 1990 (18)
    5th Death
    Age: 87, Saint, Cause of death: Heart Attack
  • 2nd August 1997

    Dead Beat!

    163 7dd7459bb3bf32fe0bea3b7f24147a77

    William Burroughs finally succumbed to years of bodily abuse today and keeled over with a fatal heart attack at the age of 83. Burroughs had been a strong candidate for many years but had dropped down to number 49 in this year's list after consistently failing to show any signs of death. Finally the 1997 Death List looks as though it could finish with a respectable score.

    2 appearances: 1997 (49), 1993 (52)
    4th Death
    Age: 83, Drugs Guru, Cause of death: Heart Attack
  • 1st July 1997

    It's a Wonderful Death!

    82 c64bbfda342469d802a9dfeb30fa5d1a

    When it rains, it pours! Jimmy Stewart, one of the veterans of the inaugural death list in 1987, had a heart attack and died today to take the Death List 97 score to three. Stewart had been suffering from severe oldness for some time it was really only a mater of time. Keep 'em coming!

    7 appearances: 1997 (12), 1996 (19), 1995 (30), 1994 (22), 1993 (17), 1990 (23), 1987 (5)
    3rd Death
    Age: 89, Actor, Cause of death: Heart Attack
  • 24th June 1997

    Jacques Joins the Fish!

    77 82b07a5ecdb43be90cf65b7610f24f26

    After a desperate few months the Death List chalks up Number 2. Jacques Cousteau has flipped his last flipper by expiring after 87 years of splashing around. No particular illness involved just that old favourite Old Age.

    8 appearances: 1997 (10), 1996 (31), 1995 (38), 1994 (37), 1993 (37), 1991 (36), 1990 (13), 1989 (6)
    2nd Death
    Age: 87, Aqua man, Cause of death: Old age and mysterious illness
  • 22nd April 1997

    Denis Compton dies

    Tombstone 8224b42b00f8262867d91adccfe4ebe304770f39b190dfbad7da9307d656e1e4

    1 appearance: 1991 (14)
    Age: 79, Cricketer, Cause of death: Unknown
  • 19th February 1997

    Deng Xiao Gone!!!!!

    35 7966d22ce906cebab0678d95a3113f80

    News has just filtered through (from the JLM newswire) that Deng Xiao Ping has finally expired. Apparently a (well overdue!) press conference has been held announcing the fact. Death List 1997 finally starts the ball rolling.

    7 appearances: 1997 (1), 1996 (3), 1995 (2), 1994 (7), 1993 (25), 1992 (13), 1991 (6)
    1st Death
    Age: 95, Chinese Premiere, Cause of death: Old age, stroke, pneumonia, chest infection, Parkinson's disease and Christ know