Died in 2008

Jan 1 Oleg Tolmachev a Soviet ice hockey player and coach.
Jan 1 John Granville an American diplomat who worked in South Sudan. On January 1, 2008, he was assassinated in a shooting in Khartoum, Sudan at the age of 33
Jan 1 Salvatore Bonanno the son of Cosa Nostra boss Joseph Bonanno. Although his father never intended for him to be the underboss of the Bonanno crime family, his appointment to high positions in the syndicate precipitated a "mob war" which led to the Bonanno family's exile to Arizona. Later in life, he became a writer and produced films for television about his family
Jan 1 Harold Corsini an American photographer.
Jan 1 Pratap Chandra Chunder a union minister of India, educationist and author. He served in the Morarji Desai Ministry from 1977 to 1980 as a cabinet minister with education and social welfare portfolios
Jan 1 Peter Caffrey an Irish actor best known for playing Padraig O'Kelly on Series 1-4 of Ballykissangel and Bracken & also well regarded for his role as a transvestite in the film Night Train, and I Went Down. He was also known for playing the role of the judge in the Irish comedy Father Ted on the episode A Song For Europe
Jan 2 Galyani Vadhana a princess of Thailand and the elder sister of King Ananda Mahidol and King Bhumibol Adulyadej. She was also a direct granddaughter of King Chulalongkorn
Jan 2 Joyce Carlson an American artist and designer credited with creating the idyllic universe of singing children at "It's a Small World" rides at Walt Disney theme parks around the world. Carlson also worked as an ink artist in the Walt Disney Animation Studios, on such films as Cinderella, Peter Pan and Sleeping Beauty. She was the lead ink artist for the 1955 Disney classic Lady and the Tramp. She spent 56 years working on Disney's animated films and theme park attractions
Jan 2 Julio Martínez (journalist) a Chilean sports commentator specializing in football who had a long career in the written press, radio and television. He won the 1995 Premio Nacional de Periodismo de Chile , awarded by the Chilean Ministry of Education. He belongs to a generation of ever-lasting emblematic Chilean sports commentators, along with Sergio Livingstone, Pedro Carcuro, Alberto Fullioux, Nestor Isella and Milton Millas
Jan 2 Martinus Tels a Dutch physicist and chemical engineer. He was a professor of chemical engineering, dean of the department of chemical engineering and the ninth rector magnificus of the Eindhoven University of Technology
Jan 2 George MacDonald Fraser a Scottish author who wrote historical novels, non-fiction books and several screenplays. He is best known for a series of works that featured the character Flashman
Jan 2 Lee S. Dreyfus an American politician and member of the Republican Party who served as the 40th Governor of Wisconsin from January 4, 1979 to January 3, 1983.
Jan 3 Lisandro Otero a Cuban novelist and journalist.
Jan 3 Nikolay Puzanov a Soviet biathlete and the 4 × 7.5 km relay Gold medalist at the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France.
Jan 3 Natasha Collins an English actress and model, and the girlfriend of Mark Speight. She died of a drug overdose and severe scalds in January 2008
Jan 3 Aleksandr Abdulov a notable Soviet/Russian actor.
Jan 3 Choi Yo-sam a Korean world boxing champion. He was born in Jeongeup, Jeollabukdo, South Korea
Jan 3 Werner Dollinger a German politician and economist. Born in Neustadt an der Aisch, he helped found the Christian Socialist Union Party in 1946. Dollinger was a member of the Bundestag , minister for the Treasury , minister of postal services and telecommunication and minister of transport. He died at his home in Neustadt an der Aisch
Jan 4 Jimmy Nah a Singaporean comedian and actor known for his many roles in the comedy variety show Comedy Nite and other J Team Productions.
Jan 4 Mort Garson a Canadian-born composer, arranger, songwriter, and pioneer of electronic music. He is best known for his albums in the 1960s and 1970s that were among the first to feature Moog synthesizers. He also co-wrote several hit songs, including "Our Day Will Come", a hit for Ruby and the Romantics. According to Allmusic, "Mort Garson boasts one of the most unique and outright bizarre resumés in popular music, spanning from easy listening to occult-influenced space-age electronic pop."
Jan 4 Xavier Chamorro Cardenal editor of El Nuevo Diario, a Nicaraguan newspaper. He was born in Managua
Jan 4 Brandi Borr an American stand-up comedian.
Jan 4 Jane Loevinger a developmental psychologist who developed a theory of personality which emphasized the gradual internalization of social rules and the maturing conscience for the origin of personal decisions. She also contributed to the theory of measurements by introducing the coefficient of test homogeneity. In the tradition of developmental stage models, Loevinger integrated several "frameworks of meaning-making" into a model of humans' constructive potentials that she called ego development. The essence of the ego is the striving to master, to integrate, and make sense of experience
Jan 4 Vyacheslav Ambartsumyan a Soviet footballer. A native of Moscow, he played midfielder and forward. He died in 2008 at the age of 67 after being hit by a car in Moscow
Jan 4 Yannis Tamtakos a Greek political activist, initially of Trotskyism and later of Anarchism. Due to his political activity, he was chased by the Greek state and Stalinists. For quite a few years before his death, he was the oldest survivor among the active participants of the great strike of 1936, in Thessaloniki
Jan 5 John Ashley (ice hockey) a referee in the National Hockey League. He was born in Galt, Ontario
Jan 5 Claus Bock a professor of German studies.
Jan 5 Clinton Grybas a leading Australian rules football and sports radio and television commentator. His death at only 32 years of age was thought to be as a result of falling whilst sleepwalking
Jan 5 Giovanni Rinaldo Coronas an Italian politician. He was born in Castelvetrano, western Sicily
Jan 6 P. K. Sethi an Indian orthopaedic surgeon. With Ram Chandra Sharma, he co-invented the "Jaipur foot", an inexpensive and flexible artificial limb, in 1969
Jan 6 Cy Leslie the founder of Pickwick Records, and the first president and founder of MGM/UA Home Entertainment Group. Pickwick Records aimed to make music more affordable, and carried such artists as Elvis Presley at various times. MGM Home Video was the first company to enter the home video business, which today has become the home entertainment industry including DVD and other sales. He began his career by founding Voco Records, producing record greeting cards, and later children's records
Jan 6 Valentin Matyashev a General Director of the Research Institute of Instrument Design from 1978 to 1998, Professor, Laureate of the Lenin and State awards, academician of the International Academy of Informatization.
Jan 7 Philip Agee a Central Intelligence Agency case officer and writer, best known as author of the 1975 book, Inside the Company: CIA Diary, detailing his experiences in the CIA. Agee joined the CIA in 1957, and over the following decade had postings in Washington, D.C., Ecuador, Uruguay and Mexico. After resigning from the Agency in 1968, he became a leading opponent of CIA practices. A co-founder of CovertAction Quarterly, he died in Cuba in January 2008
Jan 7 Alwyn Schlebusch the only holder of the title Vice State President of South Africa from 1 January 1981 to 14 September 1984. He was an Afrikaner with a surname of German origin. He was born in Lady Grey, Eastern Cape
Jan 7 Maryvonne Dupureur a French middle distance who specialized in the 800 metres.
Jan 7 Hans Monderman a Dutch road traffic engineer and innovator. He was recognized for radically challenging the criteria used to evaluate engineering solutions for street design. His work compelled transportation planners and highway engineers to look afresh at the way people and technology relate to each other
Jan 8 Moshe Levi an Israeli military commander and the 12th chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces. He served in this position from 1983 to 1987. He was the first chief of staff of Mizrahi origin
Jan 8 George Moore (jockey) an Australian jockey and Thoroughbred horse trainer. He began his career in racing in 1939 in Brisbane where he quickly became one of the top apprentice jockeys and where in 1943 he won the Senior Jockeys' Premiership. He then relocated to Sydney and in 1949 went to work for trainer Tommy Smith with whom he would have considerable success
Jan 8 Desmond MacNamara a sculptor, painter, stage and art designer and novelist. After graduating from University College Dublin and the National College of Art in Dublin in the early 1940s, he found a place as stage designer and prop maker for the Abbey Theatre and at the Gate Theatre in Dublin, working with the legendary duo Michael Macliammoir and Hilton Edwards. He was an uncredited art designer on Henry His sculptures are on display in the National Art Gallery of Ireland and at the Dublin Writers Museum. In the 1940s and early 1950s, he and his first wife ran what evolved into a literary salon on Dublin's Grafton Street, a posh thoroughfare today, where they hosted many figures in the Irish arts. The eminent traffic included Brendan Behan, Patrick Kavanagh, Flann O'Brien, Anthony Cronin, Valentine Iremonger, P. Donleavy, Gainor Crist , Edna O'Brien, actor Dan O'Herlihy, Ernest Gebler, John Ryan , and other literary personalities. Wartime emigres Nobel laureate physicist Erwin Schrodinger and his wife were frequent guests. Major memoirs of the period cite MacNamara as a pivotal figure in Dublin's cultural underground. This post-war Dublin bohemian scene was immortalized in Donleavy's novel The Ginger Man, where MacNamara appears as MacDoon, the Kangaroo-suited artist
Jan 9 Otto Westphalen a German U-boat commander in World War II and recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. The Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership
Jan 9 Johnny Grant (radio personality) an American radio personality and television producer who also served as the honorary mayor of Hollywood, in which capacity he was often present at Hollywood community functions, including the unveiling of new stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. An intersection just north of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue is designated "Johnny Grant Way."
Jan 9 Mehran Ghassemi an Iranian journalist. He was an expert on Iranian Nuclear Dossier and Foreign Policy and published hundreds of articles in Iranian newspapers
Jan 9 John Harvey-Jones an English businessman. He was the chairman of Imperial Chemical Industries from 1982 to 1987. He may have been best known for his BBC television show, Troubleshooter, in which he advised struggling businesses
Jan 9 Charles Fehrenbach (astronomer) a French astronomer and member of the French Academy of Sciences. He was director of the Observatoire de Haute Provence until 1983
Jan 9 Darius Nggawa an Indonesian Roman Catholic bishop.
Jan 10 Andrés Henestrosa a Mexican writer and politician. In addition to his prose and poetry, Henestrosa was elected to the federal legislature, serving three terms in the Chamber of Deputies, and as a senator for the state of Oaxaca from 1982 to 1988. He was born in Ixhuatán, Oaxaca
Jan 10 Mikhail Minin a Russian Soviet soldier who was the first to enter the Reichstag building on April 30, 1945 during the Battle of Berlin, and the first soldier to mount the flag on the Reichstag building at 10:40 pm.
Jan 10 Christopher Bowman an American figure skater. He was a two-time World medalist , the 1983 World Junior champion, and a two-time U.S. national champion. He competed in two Olympic Winter Games, placing 7th in 1988 and 4th in 1992
Jan 10 Maila Nurmi a Finnish-American actress born in Petsamo, Finland, who created the campy 1950s character Vampira. She portrayed Vampira as TV's first horror host and in the Ed Wood cult film Plan 9 from Outer Space. She is also billed as Vampira in the 1959 movie The Beat Generation where she plays a beatnik poet
Jan 11 Yashawant Dinkar Phadke a historian and a political activist from Maharashtra, India.