Paul Brickhill, 74, author of "The Great Escape" and othe...

Deaths elsewhere

April 26, 1991

Paul Brickhill, 74, author of "The Great Escape" and othe best-selling war novels that sold millions of copies and were made into films, died Tuesday in Sydney, Australia. Mr. Brickhill was a journalist on the Sun newspaper in Sydney before joining the Royal Australian Air Force. He trained as a fighter pilot in Canada, flew with a squadron in England and was shot down over the Tunisian desert in 1943. He spent the rest of the war in Stalag Luft 111, the prisoner-of-war camp that was the setting of his book "The Great Escape," written in 1949. "The Dam Busters," "Escape or Die" and "Reach for the Sky," the story of legless British aviator Sir Douglas Bader, followed in quick succession.

Michael Kuehnen, 35, Germany's top neo-Nazi leader, died yesterday of an undisclosed illness in Kassel. Medical officials would not reveal the cause of death. Mr. Kuehnen was the most prominent leader of the small but fanatical neo-Nazi movement in Germany. Since 1983, the former West German army officer had led various outlawed groups. His West German organizations never drew many members, but his disciples were blamed for numerous violent attacks on foreigners and homosexuals. When East Germany shed its Communist hard-liners in 1989, Mr. Kuehnen and his followers began recruiting disaffected youths in the economically troubled country.

Henry Hansteen, 86, a researcher whose work on uranium fission helped lead to the development of nuclear weapons, killed himself Tuesday in Ithaca, N.Y., Cornell University officials said. Mr. Hansteen, who suffered from depression, jumped from a bridge at the university, the officials said. He had taught briefly at Cornell and lived in Ithaca. He worked in 1941 with Enrico Fermi, the nuclear physicist who helped develop the atom bomb when he later headed research that led to the first nuclear chain reaction.

John Ethelbert Leslie, 80, a lawyer, accountant and former chairman and chief executive of Bache & Co., died of cancer Tuesday at his home in Manhattan. Mr. Leslie was head of Bache & Co., now known as Prudential Securities Inc., at a time when it was the nation's second-largest securities-industry firm, second only to Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith. He was named chairman in 1969 and retired in 1982. He was chairman of the company's policy committee from 1968 to 1969 and chief executive from 1970 to 1977.

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