Quiz about Dead Too Soon II More  Famed Folks Who Died Young
Quiz about Dead Too Soon II More  Famed Folks Who Died Young

Dead Too Soon II: More Famed Folks Who Died Young Quiz


This is my second "Dead Too Soon" quiz. It discusses 10 folks, who never lived beyond their 30's. But whether they were singers, musicians, or good samaritans, they had one thing in common. They all were "Dead Too Soon".

A multiple-choice quiz by paulmallon. Estimated time: 8 mins.
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Author
paulmallon
Time
8 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
349,412
Updated
Feb 20 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Difficult
Avg Score
5 / 10
Plays
639
Awards
Top 20% Quiz
Last 3 plays: mandy2 (9/10), Guest 175 (4/10), Guest 100 (4/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. The beautiful and talented singer, known to millions of fans as simply Selena, was born Selena Quintanilla, April 4, 1971. Her career began early, when she released her first album, "Selena y Los Dios", before she had reached her teens. She would be named the winner of the Tejano Music Award as Best Vocalist of the Year in 1987. On March 31, 1995, when she was just 23, she was murdered by Yolanda Saldivar. What was her relationship to Selena? Hint

She was a back-up singer in her band.
She was the president of her fan club.
She was a jealous ex-friend.
She was her half-cousin.

2. Basketball star, Reggie Lewis was born November 21, 1965. He attended Dunbar H.S. where in his last two years, his team would go undefeated (60-0). His entire National Basketball Association (NBA) career (1987-1993) was played with the Boston Celtics. He averaged 17.6 points per game (ppg), and in his last two years averaged over 20 ppg. He was only the second Celtic to have his uniform number retired without having won an NBA title. Who was the first? Hint

Sam Jones
Tom Gola
Ed Macauley
Jerry Lucas

3. For now let's just call him Mozart.* The great classical composer was born January 27, 1756 in Salzburg, (now) Austria. His first music teacher was his father, who constantly tried to promote him toward the greatness he believed he saw in him. Mozart composed operas, concerts, chamber music and choral pieces. In his short but prodigious life he would compose over 600 works.
In July 1782, his reputation as a composer was firmly established when he composed (English translation): "The Abduction from the Seraglio".
Which of the following operas did he NOT compose?
Hint

Don Giovanni
The Marriage of Figaro
Fidelio
The Magic Flute

4. Actress, model and singer Brittany Murphy was born Brittany Anne Bertolotti, November 10, 1977 in Atlanta, GA. She and her mother moved to NJ after her parents divorced. When Brittany expressed a desire to act, they moved to CA, when she was 13. She made over 25 movies and appeared in a number of TV shows. In 2005 she dabbled in modeling as the spokesperson for a line of jeans. Which was the brand she represented? Hint

Guess
Calvin Klein
Levi
Jordache

5. There are very few musicians who are instantaneously known by a single word nickname. "Satchmo", Louis Armstrong is a notable exception as is "Bird", a.k.a. Charlie Parker. Parker was born August 29, 1920 in Kansas City, Kansas, and began playing at age 11. Over his careeer he would record over 125 albums and perform in over 25 live appearances. What instrument did he play? Hint

trombone
trumpet
saxophone
clarinet

6. One of the most important figures of the American Civil Rights movement, was Martin Luther King. Jr. He was born January 15, 1929, and spent most of his adult life fighting against the Vietnam War and fighting for equal rights for African Americans. He was a Baptist minister who took a "Ghandi" like non-violent approach to civil protests. In 1957, he along with Rev. Ralph Abernathy, helped start which important organization? Hint

Southern Christian Leadership Conference
Southern Christian Leadership Council
Southern Baptist Leadership Conference
Southern Christian Brotherhood League

7. Sal Mineo will always be best remembered for his role, as "Plato" opposite James Dean in "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955). He was born January 10, 1939 to parents who had a somewhat unusual occupation; they were both coffin makers! He would go on to make over 20 movies, including "Giant" (1956) and "Exodus" (1960) for which he would win a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor. His first movie was "Six Bridges to Cross" (1955). What actor did he beat out to win the role of Jerry? Hint

Clint Eastwood
James Caan
George Hamilton
Peter Fonda

8. Mexican-American singer, musician and songwriter Richard Valenzuela, better known as Ritchie Valens was born May 13, 1941 in CA. He was one of the early stars of the Latin rock genre. He played with a local band, ("The Silhouettes") at age 16. After quitting high school, he signed with Del-Fi records in 1958 and that same year, he released the most popular and memorable song of his brief career, "La Bamba". What was the tune on the flip side? Hint

Come On Let's Go
A Teenager in Love
Fast Freight/Big Baby Blues
Donna

9. The great Roberto Clemente was born August 18, 1934 in Puerto Rico. He was an 18 year major league outfielder, playing his entire career (1955-1972) with the Pittsburgh Pirates. His gaudy lifetime stats include a batting average of .317, with 240 home runs and 1,305 runs batted in. On September 30, 1972, in the last regular season at-bat of his life, he recorded hit number 3,000. Three months later, at age 38, he would die in a plane crash while helping deliver food and supplies to the victims of what earthquake ravaged country? Hint

Costa Rica
Honduras
Nicaragua
Panama

10. George Gershwin was one of the great names in American music during the first half of the 20th century. He was born as Jacob Gershvn, September 26, 1898. As a youth he preferred playing piano, but later would compose for operas, Broadway shows and Hollywood movies in both classical and popular styles.
His most popular classical work is "Rhapsody in Blue" (1924).
What song, written in 1919, was his first popular hit song?
Hint

I Got Rhythm
Fascinating Rhythm
Swanee
They Can't Take That Away from Me


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. The beautiful and talented singer, known to millions of fans as simply Selena, was born Selena Quintanilla, April 4, 1971. Her career began early, when she released her first album, "Selena y Los Dios", before she had reached her teens. She would be named the winner of the Tejano Music Award as Best Vocalist of the Year in 1987. On March 31, 1995, when she was just 23, she was murdered by Yolanda Saldivar. What was her relationship to Selena?

Answer: She was the president of her fan club.

When it came to light that Saldivar had been stealing money from her, Selena confronted her and she (Saldivar) shot her in a Corpus Christi motel. Despite being cut down at just the beginning of her career, Selena's albums sold over 60 million copies. She recorded over 75 singles, to go along with over 30 albums. She had seven number one hits in the 1990's, earning her Billboard Magazine's award as the Best Selling Artist of the Decade. She had her first gold album in 1990, "Ven Conmigo" and became known as "The Queen of Tejano Music". In 1992 she married Chris Perez, a musician in her band. Later she began designing a line of clothes, opening a couple of retail stores called Selena Etc. She was an ardent speaker to youth groups and schools about the perils of drug use and the importance of continuing education. In 1995, Selena's work was immortalized when she was inducted into the "Latin Music Hall of Fame".

Interesting fact: In 1997 a biopic of her life, "Selena", was released starring J-Lo as the brilliant young singer.
2. Basketball star, Reggie Lewis was born November 21, 1965. He attended Dunbar H.S. where in his last two years, his team would go undefeated (60-0). His entire National Basketball Association (NBA) career (1987-1993) was played with the Boston Celtics. He averaged 17.6 points per game (ppg), and in his last two years averaged over 20 ppg. He was only the second Celtic to have his uniform number retired without having won an NBA title. Who was the first?

Answer: Ed Macauley

"Easy Ed" Macauley had his number 22 retired in 1963.
Lewis' Dunbar team had three other future NBA stars on it, "Muggsy" Bogues, Reggie Williams and David Wingate. His senior year team of 1983 was voted the top H.S. team in the country by a USA Today poll. He then went to Northeastern University and graduated as the Huskie's all-time leading scorer (22.4 ppg). In his rookie year with Boston, Lewis played second fiddle to a guy named Larry Bird, but blossomed as a starter in his second season, averaging 18.5 ppg.
By 1992 he was an NBA All-Star, but he would be dead by the following year.
On July 27, 1993 he collapsed during a practice game, as a result of cardiac arrest. He was just 27 years old. Boston retired his uniform number 35 on December 28, 1994.

Interesting fact: In 1992 he became the first Celtic to record over 100 steals, assists, rebounds, and blocked shots in a single season. Oh, and by the way, he also averaged 20.8 ppg that same year.
3. For now let's just call him Mozart.* The great classical composer was born January 27, 1756 in Salzburg, (now) Austria. His first music teacher was his father, who constantly tried to promote him toward the greatness he believed he saw in him. Mozart composed operas, concerts, chamber music and choral pieces. In his short but prodigious life he would compose over 600 works. In July 1782, his reputation as a composer was firmly established when he composed (English translation): "The Abduction from the Seraglio". Which of the following operas did he NOT compose?

Answer: Fidelio

"Fidelio" (1814) was the only opera composed by Ludwig van Beethoven.
Mozart composed "The Marriage of Figaro" in 1786, "Don Giovanni" in (1787) and "The Magic Flute" in 1791". In 1775, while a court musician for the ruler of Salzburg, Archbishop Colloredo, he composed his only five violin concertos.
At the age of eight he met Johann Sebastian Bach in London and Bach's works would be a great influence in his own later compositions.
While a relentlessly studious worker, he did manage to enjoy some "down time" as a skilled dancer and billiards player. About the only thing certain about his death is the date on which it occurred, December 5, 1791. Over 100 speculations about what took him at age 35 never firmly established a certain cause, but the consensus seems to be rheumatic fever. He was buried in a mass grave for paupers.

*I felt it would be easier to just go with Mozart because he was baptized (everybody please take a deep breath):
Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfangus Theophilus Mozart. YIKES!
4. Actress, model and singer Brittany Murphy was born Brittany Anne Bertolotti, November 10, 1977 in Atlanta, GA. She and her mother moved to NJ after her parents divorced. When Brittany expressed a desire to act, they moved to CA, when she was 13. She made over 25 movies and appeared in a number of TV shows. In 2005 she dabbled in modeling as the spokesperson for a line of jeans. Which was the brand she represented?

Answer: Jordache

Among her movie body of work were "Clueless" (1995), "Girl Interrupted" (1999) and "Riding in Cars with Boys" (2001). She also did TV work on such shows as "Drexell's Class" (1991-1992), "Almost Home" (1993) and for the entire 13 year run (1997-2009), she was the animated voice of Luanne Platter on "King of the Hill". Her singing days started in the early '90's when she belted out songs for the band, "Blessed Soul". Later her single of "Faster Kill Pussycat" topped the Billboard's Hot Dance Club Play list (2006). The song came from her album "A Lively Mind". In May, 2007 she got hitched to Simon Monjack, but she died in her home two years later from pneumonia, at the age of 32.

Interesting fact: Just five months after losing Brittany, Simon died, also of pneumonia, also in the same house.
5. There are very few musicians who are instantaneously known by a single word nickname. "Satchmo", Louis Armstrong is a notable exception as is "Bird", a.k.a. Charlie Parker. Parker was born August 29, 1920 in Kansas City, Kansas, and began playing at age 11. Over his careeer he would record over 125 albums and perform in over 25 live appearances. What instrument did he play?

Answer: saxophone

Parker, along with drummer Max Roach were two of the leading exponents of the bebop style of jazz. When he moved to NY at the age of 19, he played alongside the great trumpet player, Dizzy Gillespie with the Earl Hines band.
He was a Grammy winner in 1974 for Best Performance by a Soloist and four of his recordings won Grammy Hall of Fame Awards: "Billie's Bounce" (1945), "Ornithology" (1946), "Charlie Parker with Strings" (1950) and "Jazz at Mossy Hall" (1953). He was inducted into the Big Band Hall of Fame in 1979 and the Lincoln Center Jazz Hall of Fame in 2004. He had become addicted to morphine when he was a teenager and in his adult life was a victim of alcoholism and heroin addiction. At various points in his career he was known to have pawned his saxophones for drug money. When he died on March 12, 1955 in New York's Stanhope Hotel, a local coroner who examined Parker's drug ravaged body, estimated his age as being in the mid-fifties. He was 34.

Interesting fact: His friend and fellow jazz legend Dizzy Gillespie covered the expenses for Charlie's funeral.
6. One of the most important figures of the American Civil Rights movement, was Martin Luther King. Jr. He was born January 15, 1929, and spent most of his adult life fighting against the Vietnam War and fighting for equal rights for African Americans. He was a Baptist minister who took a "Ghandi" like non-violent approach to civil protests. In 1957, he along with Rev. Ralph Abernathy, helped start which important organization?

Answer: Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Dr. King began his collegiate studies when he was 15 at Morehead College, without ever having graduated from high school. He received his Bachelor of Divinity degree from Crozer Theolgical Seminary in 1951. On June 18, 1953, he married Coretta Scott. King delivered many inspirational talks including his famous, "I Have a Dream" speech, delivered at the time of the March on Washington in 1963. On March 3, 1968, he delivered his "I Have Been to the Mountain Top" speech in Memphis, TN. The next day he was cut down by an assassin named James Earl Ray, as he stood on his Memphis motel balcony.
Dr. King was the "Time Magazine"'s Person of the Year in 1963 and the following year he would become the youngest person ever to win the Nobel Peace Prize. In 1977 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and was a awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 2004.

Interesting fact: When the Gallup Organization released its list of the "Most Widely Admired People of the 20th Century", Dr. King came in second, behind only Mother Teresa.
7. Sal Mineo will always be best remembered for his role, as "Plato" opposite James Dean in "Rebel Without a Cause" (1955). He was born January 10, 1939 to parents who had a somewhat unusual occupation; they were both coffin makers! He would go on to make over 20 movies, including "Giant" (1956) and "Exodus" (1960) for which he would win a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor. His first movie was "Six Bridges to Cross" (1955). What actor did he beat out to win the role of Jerry?

Answer: Clint Eastwood

Tony Curtis was the male lead. Sal's first stage appearance came in "The Rose Tattoo" written by Tennessee Williams and which won the Tony Award for Best Play (1951). The following year he appeared in "The King and I", which won a Tony For Best Musical. Another marquee part came when he played the title role in "The Gene Krupa Story" (1959). His last Hollywood film was "Escape from the Planet of the Apes" (1971). On February 12, 1976, while on his way home from a rehearsal of "P.S. Your Cat is Dead", he was stabbed fatally in the heart by a 57 year old career criminal named Lionel Ray Williams.

Interesting fact: After much gossip about his sexual preferences, in the late 1960's he decided to end the speculation, and became one of the first Hollywood stars to reveal his homosexuality.
8. Mexican-American singer, musician and songwriter Richard Valenzuela, better known as Ritchie Valens was born May 13, 1941 in CA. He was one of the early stars of the Latin rock genre. He played with a local band, ("The Silhouettes") at age 16. After quitting high school, he signed with Del-Fi records in 1958 and that same year, he released the most popular and memorable song of his brief career, "La Bamba". What was the tune on the flip side?

Answer: Donna

"Donna" reached number two on Billboard's Hot 100 Chart in 1959. Except for "A Teenager in Love" which was a hit for Dion and the Belmonts (1959), all the others were Ritchie's recordings. "La Bamba" placed at number 345 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Hits of All Time. After getting over his fear of flying, he began to travel by air, and in 1958 he flew to Philadelphia to appear on American Bandstand with Dick Clark. Later that year he, Paul Anka and Buddy Holly flew to perform in Hawaii. He took to the skies once again to appear in the Hollywood film, "Go, Johnny, Go" (1959). On February 3, 1959, (later to be known as "The Day the Music Died") he perished in a plane crash which also claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, J.P. Richardson (The Big Bopper), and the pilot, Roger Peterson.
Ritchie Valens has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in 2001 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
A 1987 biopic titled "La Bamba", starred Lou Diamond Phillips as Valens.

Interesting fact: His fear of flying originated when on January 31, 1957, two planes crashed above his Jr. H.S. school, resulting in the death of eight people and injuring over 70 more. As fate would have it, Ritchie was out of school that day because of another death. He was at his grandfather's funeral.
9. The great Roberto Clemente was born August 18, 1934 in Puerto Rico. He was an 18 year major league outfielder, playing his entire career (1955-1972) with the Pittsburgh Pirates. His gaudy lifetime stats include a batting average of .317, with 240 home runs and 1,305 runs batted in. On September 30, 1972, in the last regular season at-bat of his life, he recorded hit number 3,000. Three months later, at age 38, he would die in a plane crash while helping deliver food and supplies to the victims of what earthquake ravaged country?

Answer: Nicaragua

The plane, which was seriously overloaded, crashed on December 31, 1972. His body was never recovered. The initial quake and subsequent aftershocks killed over 5,000 souls. Clemente led the Bucco's to two World Series Championships (1960 and 1971). He was a four time batting champion, 15 time All-Star, 12 time Gold Glove winner and his rifle of an arm threw out 269 baserunners.
He recorded his 3,000th hit (with his 440th career double) off N.Y. Met's rookie left-hander Jon Matlack.
He was a proud member of the United States Marine Corps Reserves from 1958-1964. In 1973 he was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and had his uniform number 21 retired by the Pirates. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002. His final act was typical of the way he led his charitable life, often suppying baseball equipment to Latin kids who could not afford them. Each year Major League Baseball honors the player who has done the most to carry on that tradition of community involvement and charity work. That man is given The Roberto Clemente Award.

Interesting fact: When the doors to Cooperstown opened to him in 1973, he became the first Latin American ballplayer ever inducted into the Hall of Fame.
10. George Gershwin was one of the great names in American music during the first half of the 20th century. He was born as Jacob Gershvn, September 26, 1898. As a youth he preferred playing piano, but later would compose for operas, Broadway shows and Hollywood movies in both classical and popular styles. His most popular classical work is "Rhapsody in Blue" (1924). What song, written in 1919, was his first popular hit song?

Answer: Swanee

"Swanee" became a huge hit after Al Jolson started performing it in his show.
"Fascinating Rhythm" (1924) came from a Broadway comedy he co-wrote with his brother Ira, called "Lady Be Good". "Girl Crazy", the first musical comedy to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, brought "I Got Rhythm", the same year. He wrote "They Can't Take That Away From Me" for the Fred Astair/Ginger Rogers flick, "Shall We Dance" (1936), which also featured "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off". He quit high school at age 15, but seemed to do OK, having a theatre named after him (and Ira) on the Great White Way, and being awarded the Congessional Gold Medal in 1985. Alan Alda played the Great Gershwin in "Rhapsody in Blue", a 1945 biopic.
He died July 11, 1937, at age 38, two days after surgery for a brain tumor.

Interesting fact: in 2005, the British newspaper, The Guardian opined that of all the great composers in history, George Gershwin was the wealthiest ever.
Source: Author paulmallon

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