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Bettye Ackerman Jaffe, a star of the popular 1960s medical series "Ben Casey" and the widow of actor Sam Jaffe, died Nov. 1 following a stroke in Columbia, S.C. She was 82.

Jaffe died at her home, her brother Robert Ackerman said.

Born Feb. 28, 1924, in Walterboro, S.C., Jaffe made her film debut in the 1959 drama "Face of Fire" and made several guest appearances on such TV series as "Perry Mason" and "St. Elsewhere." She met her husband when they appeared together in a New York stage production of Moliere's "Tartuffe" in 1955. The couple married in 1956.

They often performed together, including on "Ben Casey." She played an anesthesiologist, and he played Dr. David Zorba on the series, which ended in 1966. Their last joint TV performance was on "The Love Boat."

Sam Jaffe died in 1984 at age 93.

In 1998, Jaffe sold her home in Beverly Hills and moved to Columbia. She later was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, her brother said.



Jeremy Slate, a versatile actor who co-wrote and starred in the cult film "Hell's Angels '69" and went on to appear on the daytime drama "One Life to Live" for eight seasons, died Nov. 19 of complications following surgery for esophageal cancer at UCLA Medical Center in Westwood, agent Bonnie Black said. He was 80.

Slate gained fame in the early 1960s on the TV series "The Aquanauts" and a few years later appeared alongside Elvis Presley in "Girls! Girls! Girls!" He guest starred on nearly 100 TV shows, including "Gunsmoke," "Mission: Impossible," "Bewitched" and "Police Story." Most recently, he was seen on the NBC sitcom "My Name Is Earl."

Often cast as a tough guy, Slate appeared during the late 1960s in a string of biker films, including "The Born Losers" and "Hell's Angels '69," which he co-wrote.

From 1979-87, he was a regular on the ABC soap "One Life to Live," as Chuck Wilson.



Clarence LaRoche, a former managing editor of the San Antonio Express who interviewed every Mexican president from 1947-70, died Nov. 18 of congestive heart failure, the San Antonio Express-News reported. He was 93.

In 1953, LaRoche covered the dedication of the International Falcon Reservoir near the Texas-Mexico border, an event attended by President Eisenhower and Mexican President Adolfo Ruiz Cortines. The Mexican president greeted Eisenhower with a warm embrace, a gesture of friendship and respect in Mexico.

Eisenhower seemed uncertain how to respond, until LaRoche said, "Hug him, Mr. President."

LaRoche, who was born in Brownsville, Texas, and spoke Spanish, became chief in 1946 of four bureaus in the Rio Grande Valley for the San Antonio Express, a morning newspaper that later merged with the afternoon San Antonio News. He retired from the paper in 1978.



John Gilbert, an actor who was a presence in Seattle theater since the 1960s, died Nov. 7 from a combination of cancer and emphysema. He was 67.

Gilbert studied drama at the University of Washington and, as soon as he graduated in 1963, became a regular at the newly formed Seattle Repertory Theater. He was best known for his role as Ebenezer Scrooge in ACT Theatre's annual productions of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol." He played the role hundreds of times from 1976-95.



John Higgins, a veteran cable TV reporter and business editor at Broadcasting & Cable magazine, died Nov. 20 of a heart attack at a New Jersey hospital. He was 45.

Higgins was well known and widely respected in the television industry for his tenacity and reporting skills. Before joining Broadcasting & Cable in 1997, he spent years covering the cable beat for trade publication Multichannel News.
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