Qian Xuesen, rocket scientist

SUNDAY, NOV. 1, 2009

BEIJING – Qian Xuesen, a rocket scientist known as the father of China’s space technology program, died Saturday in Beijing, the official Xinhua News Agency said. He was 98.

Qian, also known as Tsien Hsue-shen, began his career in the U.S. and was regarded as one of the brightest minds in the new field of aeronautics before returning to China in 1955, driven out of the United States at the height of anti-communist fervor.

Qian set up China’s first missile and rocket research institute, which helped start China’s space program.

Roy DeCarava, photographer

NEW YORK – Roy DeCarava, a photographer whose black and white images captured Harlem’s everyday life and the jazz greats who performed there, has died. He was 89.

DeCarava died in Manhattan of natural causes on Tuesday, said his daughter, Susan DeCarava. He had been teaching an advanced photography course at Hunter College, where he joined the faculty in 1975.

Born in Harlem, DeCarava was considered to be among the first to give serious photographic attention to the black experience in America.

In 1951, he became the first black photographer to win the Guggenheim Fellowship in the arts.

August Coppola, literature professor

LOS ANGELES – August Coppola, a former literature professor and the father of actor Nicolas Cage and the brother of filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola and actress Talia Shire, has died. He was 75.

Coppola died Tuesday in Los Angeles after suffering a heart attack, Cage’s publicist, Annett Wolf, said Thursday.

Coppola taught comparative literature at California State University, Long Beach, in the 1960s and ’70s before moving to California State University, San Francisco, in 1984. He became dean of the School of Creative Arts there and professor in the department of design and industry until 1992.


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