Samuel Fuller, 86, a gritty drifter, former reporter and war hero who became one of the nation's premier directors of B movies and influenced other directors, including Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino, died Thursday in Los Angeles. He wrote most of his own screenplays and was perhaps best known for such 1950s movies as "The Steel Helmet" and "Pickup on South Street," and for "The Big Red One," a 1979 movie based on his experiences fighting with the 1st Infantry Division in World War II.
Helen Wright Greuter, 82, an astronomer and author, died of heart failure Oct. 23 at a retirement home in her native Washington. Ms. Wright, who used her family name professionally, worked as an astronomer before she turned to free-lance writing and editing in the 1940s. She was best known for her book "Explorer of the Universe: A Biography of George Ellery Hale." She also wrote "Sweeper of the Sky: The Life of Maria Mitchell," about America's first female astronomer.