R.I.P. Richard Dawson, Kathryn Joosten

June 4, 2012

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Some sad news from the weekend: Desperate Housewives co-star Kathryn Joosten and game show legend Richard Dawson died Saturday due to their respective complications from cancer.

kathryn-joosten.jpgJoosten had successfully fought bouts with lung cancer in 2001 and 2009, writing a piece for the LA Times just last year in which she declared herself "the only 'celebrity' to be public about [her] lung cancer." Unfortunately, the cancer returned and Joosten was this time unable to combat the disease, dying in her Westlake Village home on Saturday. She was 72.

The late actress had a recurring role as Presidential secretary Mrs. Landingham on The West Wing, and turned up in guest spots for series like Scrubs, My Name Is Earl, and more. But the role Joosten will likely most be remembered for is Mrs. McCluskey, the crotchety neighbor she played on ABC's Desperate Housewives. The character of McCluskey, too, recently died of cancer, passing away in a heavy, emotional farewell on the show's series finale. It feels somehow appropriate, if less awesome than Joosten mirroring the death of her Megay Python vs. Gatoroid character.

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Promising Heaven's angels so many uncomfortably-lustful kisses, long-time Family Feud host Richard Dawson died Saturday night due to complications relating to esophageal cancer. He was 79.

Though his skill at giving incredulous responses to poll answers is what acquainted many with the Dawson persona, the British entertainer got his big break in the '60s with Hogan's Heroes, the CBS Nazi POW comedy in which he played Cpl. Peter Newkirk. In 1987, he brought his game show charm to film for The Running Man, in which his skilled hosting provided all the villainous exposition as to why Arnold Schwarzenegger was running everywhere. His response to Arnold's "I'll be back"--"only in a rerun"--now echoes with an haunting clarity that can only be washed away with a few Dawson Match Game reruns on GSN.

Louie Anderson, Richard Karn, John O'Hurley, and Steve Harvey grow stronger.

(Thanks to Lisa, our most morbid tipster)

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