Died in 1978

Jan 1 Don Freeman an American painter, printmaker, cartoonist, and an illustrator and writer of children's books.
Jan 3 Rubén Morán a Uruguayan footballer, who played for C.A. Cerro
Jan 5 Wyatt Emory Cooper an American author and screenwriter.
Jan 5 Sally Eilers an American actress.
Jan 6 Burt Munro a New Zealand motorcycle racer, famous for setting an under-1,000 cc world record, at Bonneville, 26 August 1967. This record still stands today. Munro was 68 and was riding a 47-year-old machine when he set his last record
Jan 8 André François-Poncet a French politician and diplomat whose post as ambassador to Germany allowed him to witness first-hand the rise to power of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, and the Nazi regime's preparations for World War II.
Jan 9 Robert Daniel Murphy an American diplomat.
Jan 10 Pedro Joaquín Chamorro Cardenal a Nicaraguan journalist and publisher. He was the editor of La Prensa, the only significant opposition newspaper to the long rule of the Somoza family. He is a 1977 laureate of the Maria Moors Cabot Prize of the University of Columbia. He married Violeta Barrios de Chamorro who later went on to become President of Nicaragua
Jan 11 Ibn-e-Insha a Pakistani Leftist Urdu poet, humorist, travelogue writer and columnist. Along with his poetry, he was regarded one of the best humorists of Urdu. His poetry has a distinctive diction laced with language reminiscent of Amir Khusro in its use of words and construction that is usually heard in the more earthy dialects of the Hindi-Urdu complex of languages, and his forms and poetic style is an influence on generations of young poets
Jan 13 Hubert Humphrey an American politician who served as the 38th Vice President of the United States under President Lyndon Johnson, from 1965 to 1969. Humphrey twice served in the United States Senate, representing Minnesota from 1949 to 1964 and 1971 to 1978. He was the nominee of the Democratic Party in the 1968 presidential election, losing to the Republican nominee, Richard Nixon
Jan 13 Maurice Carême a Belgian francophone poet, best known for his simple writing style and children's poetry.
Jan 13 Joe McCarthy (manager) a manager in Major League Baseball, most renowned for his leadership of the "Bronx Bombers" teams of the New York Yankees from 1931 to 1946. The first manager to win pennants with both National and American League teams, he won nine league titles overall and seven World Series championships – a record tied only by Casey Stengel. McCarthy was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1957
Jan 14 Kurt Gödel an Austrian, and later American, logician, mathematician, and philosopher. Considered with Aristotle and Gottlob Frege to be one of the most significant logicians in history, Gödel made an immense impact upon scientific and philosophical thinking in the 20th century, a time when others such as Bertrand Russell, N. Whitehead, and David Hilbert were pioneering the use of logic and set theory to understand the foundations of mathematics
Jan 14 Harold Abrahams a British track and field athlete of Jewish origin. He was Olympic champion in 1924 in the 100 metres sprint, a feat depicted in the 1981 movie Chariots of Fire
Jan 14 Robert Heger a German conductor and composer from Strasbourg, Alsace-Lorraine.
Jan 14 Blossom Rock an American actress of stage and television. She was the middle sister of three. Her younger sister was screen actress and singer Jeanette MacDonald
Jan 15 Thein Pe Myint an influential Burmese politician, writer and journalist. A writer of several politically and socially prominent books and the founder of an influential newspaper The Botataung, Thein Pe Myint was a leading Marxist intellectual and was an important player in the Burmese independence movement and postwar politics
Jan 16 A. V. Kulasingham a Ceylon Tamil lawyer, politician, journalist and editor of the Ceylon Daily News and Hindu Organ.
Jan 17 Atanas Dalchev a Bulgarian poet, critic and translator. He is an author of poetry that brightly touches some philosophical problems. He translated poetry and fiction from French, Spanish, English, German and Russian authors. Recipient of the Herder Prize in 1972 and order "Znak Pocheta" in 1967
Jan 18 Carl Betz an American stage, film and television actor.
Jan 18 Walter H. Thompson best known as the bodyguard of Winston Churchill for eighteen years, between 1921 and 1935, and between 1939 and 1945 during World War Thompson reportedly saved Churchill's life on numerous occasions. When he finally retired after the war, he published a memoir that made him famous in the UK and in the US
Jan 19 Bijon Bhattacharya a prominent Indian theatre and film personality from Bengal.
Jan 21 Oleksa Hirnyk a Ukrainian Soviet dissident, an engineer by profession, who burned himself to death as an act of protest against Soviet suppression of the Ukrainian language, culture and history. The act was quickly covered up by the Soviet authorities and remained unknown to general populace for decades
Jan 21 Freda Utley an English scholar, political activist and best-selling author. After visiting the Soviet Union in 1927 as a trade union activist, she joined the Communist Party of Great Britain in 1928. Later, married and living in Moscow, she quickly became disillusioned with communism. When her Russian husband, Arcadi Berdichevsky, was arrested in 1936, she escaped to England with her young son. In 1939 they moved to the United States where she became a leading anti-Communist author and activist
Jan 22 Oliver Leese a British general during the Second World War.
Jan 22 Léon Damas a French poet and politician. He was one of the founders of the Négritude movement. He also used the pseudonym Lionel Georges André Cabassou
Jan 22 Herbert Sutcliffe an English professional cricketer who represented Yorkshire and England as an opening batsman. Apart from one match in 1945, his first-class career spanned the period between the two world wars. His first-class debut was delayed by the First World War until 1919 and his career was effectively terminated in August 1939 when he was called up for military service in the imminent Second World War
Jan 22 Austin Trevor a Belfast born actor who had a long career in British films and television.
Jan 23 Terry Kath an American musician and songwriter, best known as the original guitarist, co-lead singer and founding member of the rock band Chicago. He has been praised by the band for his guitar skills and Ray Charles-influenced vocal style
Jan 23 Jack Oakie an American actor, starring mostly in films, but also working on stage, radio and television.
Jan 23 Carmen Mondragón a Mexican artist's model, painter and poet.
Jan 24 William Barclay (theologian) a Scottish author, radio and television presenter, Church of Scotland minister and Professor of Divinity and Biblical Criticism at the University of Glasgow.
Jan 24 Herta Oberheuser a Nazi physician at the Auschwitz and Ravensbrück concentration camps from 1940 until 1943.
Jan 25 Skender Kulenović a Bosnian poet, novelist and dramatist.
Jan 25 Mirtemir an Uzbek poet and literary translator. In addition to writing his own poetry, Mirtemir translated the works of many famous foreign poets, such as Abai Qunanbaiuli, Aleksandr Pushkin, Heinrich Heine, Magtymguly Pyragy, Maxim Gorky, Mikhail Lermontov, Nâzım Hikmet, Nikolay Nekrasov, Pablo Neruda, Samad Vurgun, and Shota Rustaveli into the Uzbek language
Jan 27 Oskar Homolka an Austrian film and theatre actor. Homolka's strong accent when speaking English, his stocky appearance, bushy eyebrows and Slavic name led many to believe he was Eastern European or Russian, but he was born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary
Jan 28 Arnold Hauser (art historian) a Hungarian art historian who was perhaps the leading Marxist in the field. He wrote on the influence of change in social structures on art. His The Social History of Art argued that art—which began as "flat, symbolic, formalized, abstract and concerned with spiritual beings"—became more realistic and naturalistic as societies became less hierarchical and authoritarian, and more mercantile and bourgeois
Jan 28 Jerzy Kuryłowicz a Polish linguist who studied Indo-European languages. He was the brother of the microbiologist Włodzimierz Kuryłowicz and his son is also called Jerzy Kuryłowicz
Jan 28 Ward Moore the working name of American author Joseph Ward Moore. Moore grew up in New York City, and later moved to Chicago, and then to California
Jan 30 László Nagy (poet) a Hungarian poet and translator. He started as a populist poet and in his early youth was a believer in socialist ideology. His oeuvre comprises more than 400 poems and many volumes of translations. He was also a prose writer and graphic artist
Jan 30 Mindru Katz a Romanian-Israeli classical pianist.
Feb 2 G. Sankara Kurup the first winner of the Jnanpith Award, India's highest literary award. He won the prize in 1965 for his collection of poems in Malayalam Odakkuzhal. With part of the prize money he established the literary award Odakkuzhal in 1968. He was also the recipient of the Soviet Land Nehru Award, in 1967, and the Padma Bhushan in 1968. His poetry collection Viswadarshanam won the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award in 1961 and Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award in 1963
Feb 2 Wendy Barrie an English actress who worked in British and American films.
Feb 3 Zuzana Ondrouchová a Czechoslovak actress born in Prague into the family of a medical doctor. The actor Petr Svárovský was her husband
Feb 3 Adolf Berman a Polish-Israeli activist and communist politician.
Feb 4 Arkadi Kuleshov a poet and translator from Belarus. He was best known for his poems, Brigade Flag and Cymbalon, as well as his translations of poetry into Belarusian
Feb 7 Dimitrie Cuclin a Romanian classical music composer, musicologist, philosopher, translator, and writer.
Feb 9 Julio Jaramillo a notable Ecuadorian singer and recording artist who performed throughout Latin America, achieving great fame for his renditions of boleros, valses, pasillos, tangos, and rancheras.
Feb 9 Hans Stuck a German motor racing driver. Both his son Hans-Joachim Stuck and his grandsons Johannes and Ferdinand Stuck became race drivers
Feb 9 Costante Girardengo an Italian professional road bicycle racer, considered by many to be one of the finest riders in the history of the sport. He was the first rider to be declared a "Campionissimo" or "champion of champions" by the Italian media and fans. At the height of his popularity in the 1920s he was said to be more popular than Mussolini and it was decreed that all express trains should stop in his home town Novi Ligure, an honour only normally awarded to heads of state