While on tour on the west coast, Jimmie Lunceford was about to autograph Callahan’s record store wall, reserved for musical celebrities who came to Seaside, Oregon when owners Edward and Walter Hill noticed the bandleader looking weak and ill. A moment later Lunceford collapsed and was seized by severe convulsions, according to the newspaper’s report. The owners called the police and an ambulance, but Lunceford died. The show, despite Lunceford’s death, went on that night,
Within a day of Lunceford’s passing, the myth surrounding Lunceford’s death was in full swing. The Clatsop County Coroner declared Lunceford died of “coronary occlusion, due to thrombosis of anterior coronary artery due to arteriosclerosis” — in other words a heart attack caused by a blockage. Just recently a Lunceford biographer resurrected the age old unsubstantiated rumor that Lunceford was poisoned by the owner of a local diner due to racism and was insulted when Lunceford demanded that he and his band be served lunch. Controversy lingers but Seaside residents and jazz historians completely disagree. Seaside’s residents at the time believe it’s not plausible Lunceford and his bandmates were sickened or worse, or even turned away. “Oh, he was served,” longtime Seaside resident Gloria Stiger Linkey said. “There was no animosity. No racism at all. At least growing up in Seaside, I didn’t feel it.” As a tourist town, the goal was to sell as many tickets as possible, she said. “Because if you can serve tourists, you can serve an African-American.” Linkey added the biographer “took giant leaps” in suggesting a racial incident was a factor in Lunceford’s death. Linkey said while there “weren’t many blacks in the area,” there were no segregated dances. “We did have African-Americans in the summer from Portland. There was an influx during World War II. They worked in the shipyards.”
Final Resting Place:
824 S. Dudley Street
Memphis, Tennessee, 38104
Grave Location:South Grove 10, Plot 427
Grave Location Description
As you enter the cemetery drive straight though to the very back of the cemetery and park at the corner of Morgan’s Grand Tour and Church Drive. Jazz legend Jimmie Lunceford is buried 4 rows from Church Drive in the South Grove section.
Grave Location GPS35.11978998229852, -90.02950581452582
Read More About Jimmie Lunceford:
Videos Featuring Jimmie Lunceford:
popular name: Jeff Porcaro
date_of_death: August 5, 1992
cause_of_death: Heart attack due to occlusive coronary artery disease caused by atherosclerosis resulting from excessive cocaine use
best_know_for: Jeff Porcaro was a founding member of the band Toto with his brother, Steve, and four others. The group’s hits included ″Hold the Line″ in 1977, ″Rosanna″ in 1982 and ″Africa″ in 1983. Interestingly enough, when Jeff was seventeen, he got his first professional gig playing in Sonny & Cher's touring band.
popular name: Whitney Houston
date_of_death: February 11, 2012
cause_of_death: Drowning due to coronary artery disease and cocaine intoxication
best_know_for: Whitney Houston was arguably one of the greatest American singers of modern history. Nicknamed "The Voice", she generated sales of over 200 million records worldwide and is one of the bestselling music artists of all time. Houston has influenced many singers in popular music, and is known for her powerful, soulful vocals and vocal improvisational skills. She is the only artist to have had seven consecutive number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100, from "Saving All My Love for You" in 1985 to "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" in 1988. Houston enhanced her popularity upon entering the movie industry, most notable among her films include "The Body Guard" with Kevin Costner and "Waiting to Exhale" with Angela Bassett. Sadly in her final years she treated her talent with the frustrating indifference. While she sold more records and received more awards than almost any other female pop star of the 20th century, she spent most of her last years mired in a drug addiction that sapped her will and ability to sing and left her a broken shell of her former self.
popular name: Rob Tyner
date_of_death: September 18, 1991
cause_of_death: Heart attack
best_know_for: Although he originally auditioned as the bass player, Rob Tyner was the original lead singer for the original All American Detroit garage band MC5. It was Tyner who issued the rallying cry of "kick out the jams, motherfuckers" at the MC5's live concerts from 1964-72. As Rob once said, "We were Punk before there was Punk. We were New Wave before there was New Wave. We were Metal before there was Metal, and we were MC before there was Hammer."