While last year was filled with many experiences and memories that we will be bringing forward to the new year, it was also a year of goodbyes. The last quarter of 2022 saw the passing of many influential people in the entertainment and fashion industry, as well as one of the biggest passing in The Royal Family. As we move onto 2023, we’re taking a moment to remember those who will not be walking alongside us this year.
Olivia Newton-John (26 September 1948 – 8 August 2022)
At only 73 years old, Olivia Newton-John, who starred in the classic 1978 American musical romantic comedy film ‘Grease’, passed away after a long battle with breast cancer. She was first diagnosed in 1992 according to her husband and continued advocating for the disease, insisting on early detection in women.
Newton-John rose to fame in the late 1970s to early 1980s, bagging four Grammy awards from Best Country Vocal Performance in the 16th Annual Grammy Awards to Video of the Year in the 25th Annual Grammy Awards. She was also nominated 12 times from the 16th edition through the 27th award show. Newton-John leaves behind not only a legacy but her husband, sister, brother and nieces and nephews.
Queen Elizabeth II (21 April 1926 – 8 September 2022)
The longest-reigning monarch in the United Kingdom came to an end last year when Queen Elizabeth II passed away in Balmoral due to old age. The Queen was transported from Balmoral to Buckingham Palace, before being placed in Westminster Hall for four days where she lied-in-state.
She was then buried in the memorial chapel in St. George’s chapel, together with her father King George VI, her mother Queen Elizabeth, her sister Princess Margaret and her husband Prince Philip. At 96 years of age, Queen Elizabeth II lived through the Battle of Britain, World War II and the Covid-19 pandemic. Her son, Prince Charles and longest-serving heir became King Charles III at age 73, the oldest in British history to accede to the throne.
Stephen “tWitch” Boss (29 September 1982 – 13 December 2022)
Possibly one of the most shocking deaths in 2022 is the loss of American dancer and TV personality, Stephen “tWitch” Boss. At 40, tWitch was found dead at the Oak Tree Inn in Encino, Los Angeles, California, with gunshot wounds to the head, where later a Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner confirmed that he died by suicide.
tWitch rose to fame when he appeared on So You Think You Can Dance for Seasons 3 and 4, where he finished in second place in the latter edition. His “Mercy” dance with Katee Shean, choreographed by Mia Michaels also earned an Emmy nomination at the 61st Annual Emmy Awards. tWitch also starred in the Step Up series, and is most known as Ellen Degeneres’ ‘Dancing DJ’.
Pelé (23 October 1940 – 29 December 2022)
Pelé, whose full name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento was a world-renowned Brazillian footballer who passed away just days before the new year. According to the Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo where Pelé underwent treatment, the professional player died “due to multiple organ failures resulting from the progression of colon cancer”.
Pelé remains the youngest goalscorer in the FIFA World Cup Tournament, scoring his first goal for Brazil at a mere 17 years of age. He also holds two Guinness World Records for Most Career Goals and Most World Cup Winners’ Medals.
Vivienne Westwood (8 April 1941 – 29 December 2022)
On the same day that the world lost Pelé, the fashion industry also lost icon Vivienne Westwood. The English fashion designer was a pioneer of punk style in the 1970s and passed away at age 81, in a statement released by Westwood’s company, though her cause of death was not mentioned.
Westwood was known for her outrageous and rebellious style, evidently displayed in her fashion shows since the 1970s. She was also a prominent climate activist and launched her own climate foundation back in 2012. Westwood leaves behind her husband Andreas Kronthaler, an Austrian creative director and fashion designer.
Barbara Walters (25 September 1929 – 30 December 2022)
American TV Journalist Barbara Walters was another influential person who left us in 2022, passing away at the age of 93. She began her career in 1961 as a reporter and writer for NBC’s ‘Today’ show, before becoming a co-host in 1974.
Two years later, Walters joined ABC News, becoming the first female anchor to host the evening news program. In the same network, Walters paved numerous programs of her own, including “The Barbara Walters Specials”, “10 Most Fascinating People”, and “20/20”. She was most known for her interviewing style, in which she shares: “The first thing I tell anybody who’s going to be doing interviews is homework. I do so much homework, I know more about the person than he or she does about himself.”