Bob Magness, 72, who ran a tiny cable television company...


November 19, 1996

Bob Magness, 72, who ran a tiny cable television company out of his kitchen before building Tele-Communications Inc. into the nation's largest cable provider, died of cancer Friday in Denver.

He created his first cable system 40 years ago in Memphis, Texas, climbing poles and stringing wires for 700 subscribers.

He created the cable provider Community Television Inc. and its microwave distribution partnership, Western Microwave Inc., merging the two to create TCI when he moved to Denver in 1968. The company now has 14 million subscribers nationwide.

Mr. Magness, who was worth an estimated $1 billion, was TCI chairman until 1973.

Virginia Cherrill Martini, 88, a former wife of Cary Grant whose acting debut was as a blind flower girl in Charlie Chaplin's silent classic "City Lights," died Thursday in Santa Barbara, Calif. She stopped acting after marrying Mr. Grant in 1933. They divorced two years later. She then appeared in a few British films.

Deedie Ball, 79, a jazz musician, died of a heart attack Friday while playing the piano in a stage play before a packed audience in San Luis Obispo, Calif. Her career included television and radio work and stage performances.

Pub Date: 11/19/96

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