2011: In memoriam
Some of the people we lost in 2011.
December 28th, 2011
05:49 AM ET

2011: In memoriam

As 2011 draws to a close, we’d like to look back at some of the notable people who died this year. These videos highlight their achievements and honor their legacies.

Screen siren – Elizabeth Taylor is remembered not only as a strikingly beautiful Academy Award-winning actress, but also as a compassionate and devoted advocate for HIV/AIDS research.

Soulful songbird – Amy Winehouse enchanted many of us with her sultry voice and modern style of music. The Grammy Award-winning singer had notoriously battled substance abuse issues for years.

The visionary – Pioneer, innovator, creative genius - these are words peers used to describe iconic Apple co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs. Many first got word of his passing on one of the devices he helped create and popularize.

Witty journalist – Legendary commentator Andy Rooney was known for his dry wit and profound intelligence to audiences all over the globe. Rooney’s last televised commentary aired on “60 Minutes” on October 2, 2011.  He died about one month after leaving the show at age 92.

More notable faces – CNN looks back at some of the notable people who died in 2011.

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Filed under: 2011 Year in Review • Amy Winehouse • Apple • Celebrity • Elizabeth Taylor • Gotta Watch • Movies • Music • Steve Jobs • Technology
soundoff (203 Responses)
  1. I94

    Keith, his career may be dead, but he's not. You know who is dead? 4500 soldiers from a war Bush made up. Please be quiet.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Emigdio Alvarez

      no. that was last year.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Simply Amazing


      and 911 never happened. You must be a Ron Paul supporter.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
    • mike

      There are a lot of brain dead liberal idiots on this media also. I believe you are the biggest

      December 28, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  2. I94

    Boot, let me guess: you're someone who doesn't know any kind of humor unless it's racial. I've watched Patrice O'neal's attempts at humor for at least 10 years...I didn't have to listen to him on an overpriced radio service. The reason he was only starting to get recognition NOW is he wasn't funny. Sorry he's dead, but dead doesn't equal funny. I love it when someone can sat someone else is a stupid drugged out no talent, but say the same thing about a fat ass comedian and people have a fit! And no, not a Dane Cook fan; just a fan of actual comedy.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  3. Richicago

    @Keith; That may be perhaps the stupidest comment I have ever read. Completely off-topic and irrelevant to the article. We are all dumber for having read it.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  4. BOMBO

    I haven't died yet so I guess I can still claim to be immortal.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  5. Tiffer72

    Don't see the point of putting Amy Winehouse up there – especially next to people who accomplished so much in life. Her music was OK, but her life was a train wreck. People like that should be immediately dropped by their talent agencies, not glorified for glorifying a horrible lifestyle. Just let the memory of her pass on so we can start paying attention to talented people who actually work hard and don't drink and drug themselves to death.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • tk ellis

      I totally agree, but people want all types exposed so our children will see them and have a lif style like theirs. It is sad, like this guy Maher on his cooments about Tebow. It could be anyone that has strong Christian values/beliefs, but Maher being atheist thought he would get more exposure and he did. Fire Maher and all of the rest our country/society do not need people like this; why hire them they are not funny.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Boy are you right!

      I was thinking the SAME thing! Sorry she got herself into drugs and died but there is NO reason to be up there with the likes of Taylor, Jobs and Rooney. They made contributions to our society and it's perceptions for years. She sang a couple of songs for a few years in between drug lines. Far from the others.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  6. 4thesoldiers

    What we lost were a lot of US Soldiers lives, and there will be more to come as they come back and fail to adjust to civilian life and we lose more to drugs, alcohol, suicide and PTS. These celebrities were nothing compared to the "real" people we lost and will continue to lose in the "real" world.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Simply Amazing

      War is hell. Men paid the price of freedom. Sad to say, no victory this time.

      We owe our freedom to the fallen and the surviors.

      December 28, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  7. banasy©

    BOMBO: legend in his own mind!
    I like a person with that kind of confidence!

    December 28, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  8. banasy©

    Let's face it: nobody is going to agree who should be on this list; it a matter of what one personally thinks a notable *is*!

    December 28, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  9. BOMBO

    Trying to find out who the oldest living celebrity is. Kirk Douglas is probably the olderst A-lister at 95. Norman Lloyd (St Elsewhere) is 97. Apparently Harry Morgan died only a couple of weeks ago at 96, but as far as I know p0rn actor Hairy Organ is still going strong.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  10. banasy©

    I think Elizabeth Taylor most definitely qualifies as a notable, though.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  11. Simply Amazing

    How about listing all the abused children who will killed by murders and rapist and unrepented mothers.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
  12. flip

    Really CNN, no Cesaria Evora, no John Chamberlain, no Kim Jong-il (not that I liked him, but he was "notable"), no Patrick V. Murphy, and well there's more. So sad that CNN just "highlights" deaths of "notable" people without doing much research. Great news network you've become!

    Wikipedia did a better job than CNN at listing notable deaths in 2011: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deaths_in_2011

    December 28, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  13. Simply Amazing

    And list all the aborted babies. Caused by selfish women believing the lies of Plan Parenthood and women libs thinking you are not killing a human being. Seriously? Size and location has nothing to do with that decision. Babies have a right to LIFE. They have paid the price for a selfish society.

    Shame on all of us.

    Save lives. Don't celebrate people who are only stars in your feable minds.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
  14. Ken in MO

    Gore is right about Global Warming...but it is just an unfortunate name. Republicans have been wrong about so many things. If you remember, Bob Dole, when he ran for President still denied that smoking was addictive or harmful. They are wrong about almost every environmental issue. They are anit environment, anti science and anti common sense. Keith...you are wrong. If it were up to Republicans we would have dirty air, dirty water, etc.

    December 28, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Please shut up. Thanks.

      December 28, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • palintwit

      We would also have more of the baby jesus in our daily lives. And nascar, too. More jesus !! More nascar !! Yeeehhaawwwwwwwww !!!!!!

      December 28, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Simply Amazing

      Chris, I second the motion. You libs can just shut up. Put your heads back in the sand (or back up King O's a.s.s.)

      December 28, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • palintwit

      Simply Amazing... don't look now Cletus, but someone is trying to hotwire your tractor.

      December 28, 2011 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • LR

      And these political rants have WHAT to do with remembering people who died in 2011????? Geez.....

      December 28, 2011 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Simply Amazing

      Ken in MO and Palinwithoutwit

      You are so smart. Why doesn't Al Gore run again for president?

      He once was a great senator fron TN. I really liked him. Then he claimed to invent the internet. And before he could retrack that comment, he jumps head first and claims his SUV causes global warming. Last time I checked, our SUN creates the heat, and has flares that do more damage each day more than man can do in a million years. Of course, you would be just to support him. You voted in all his left wing radical friends into office. I like green approach to things. Sure, eat more lettuce. And stop eating beans, you are contributing to your global warming.

      December 28, 2011 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Nikdean

      you are right. this is no longer an idle comment...just look at their record for the past forty years. if it were up to republicans we would have a country that looked a lot more like Pottersville than Bailey Park

      December 28, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reason's Voice

      We lost 4 high profile Democratic voters in 2011, had Gore had just a few more in Florida, history would be different:
      * Saddam Hussein would still be alive, probably
      * We would pay at least twice as much for our energy, and BRIC countries would say, 'thanks very much!'
      * Everyone would have broadband internet and be able to post useless videos on YouTube
      * The rich would pay more in taxes, which Democrats agree, is a good thing
      * The capital gains tax would be much higher and the stock market would have sunk even lower in 2008-2009 and it probably would have occurred sooner because the government would have spent less to keep the bubble intact
      * the Arab Spring probably would not have occurred

      We can not know what the future would have been. Neither political party has THE answer. I am not particularly happy with any candidate for President in the last 11 years...choose the lesser of the two evils. Bellyaching about what happened 11 years ago is not constructive IMHO.

      December 28, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Fish

    "These videos highlight their achievements and honor their legacies." Maybe, but to show a commercial before the video is completely disgraceful. Especially the Verizon commercial before the Steve Jobs video.

    December 28, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
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