Ross Hunter, producer of tear-jerker films of the '50s who...

DEATHS ELSEWHERE

March 12, 1996

Ross Hunter, producer of tear-jerker films of the '50s who later brought the action-disaster epic "Airport" to screens in the '70s, died Sunday in Los Angeles. His age was reported between 69 and 79.

He went from a B-movie actor to a producer with a 25-year career at Universal, Columbia and Paramount studios. His more than 60 films were either bright confections -- starring Doris Day, Debbie Reynolds or Julie Andrews -- or sobbing remakes of films such as "Imitation of Life."

"Airport" earned him his only Oscar nomination.

Dr. Claude E. Welch, who was consulted by Italian doctors treating Pope John Paul II for a gunshot wound in 1981, died Saturday of a stroke in Boston. He was clinical professor emeritus at Harvard medical school.

Sheik Mohammed el-Ghazaly, 78, a prominent Egyptian scholar, died Saturday of a heart attack in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He worked as a preacher at al-Azhar, the oldest Islamic university in the world.

James Deckard, 58, an Emmy-winning cinematographer who documented the Vietnam War and the oil fires of the Gulf War, died March 3 of brain cancer in Garden Grove, Calif. He won an Emmy for the 1980 National Geographic special, "Polar Bear Alert," which he created, produced and filmed.

Pub Date: 3/12/96

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