​Passage: Bess Myerson, Rod Taylor and Andrae Crouch


Former Miss America Bess Myerson (left), actor Rod Taylor (center), and gospel singer/songwriter Andrae Crouch.

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It happened this past week . . . word of the loss of three people who were much in the public eye.

We learned belatedly of the death of Bess Myerson this past December 14.

A talented pianist, Myerson was crowned the first (and to this day the only) Jewish Miss America, in 1945.

An early TV personality, she was twice a New York City Commissioner . . . and an unsuccessful Senate candidate in 1980.

Acquitted of charges in a complicated bribery case in 1987, she retired to relative obscurity in California.

Bess Myerson was 90.

Rod Taylor in "Dark of the Sun" (1968). MGM

Actor Rod Taylor died Wednesday in Los Angeles.

Born in Australia, Taylor built a career in Hollywood.

He traveled far into the future in the 1960 adaptation of H.G. Wells' "The Time Machine."

And in 1963 he memorably battled evil avians in Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds."

Other film and TV roles followed, including a part in the CBS series, "Falcon Crest."

Rod Taylor was 84.

To watch a trailer for "The Time Machine," click on the video player below.

Gospel singer and songwriter Andrae Crouch died on Thursday following a heart attack.

A preacher's son, he wrote his first song at the age of 14. He went on to win seven Grammys, and an Oscar nomination for the score of the film, "The Color Purple."

His tune, "Let the Church Say Amen" has been heard at many a Sunday morning service.

Andrae Crouch was 72.

To watch a performance by Andrae Crouch of "The Promise," click on the video player below.