Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino, 52, sued the NFL over concussions he suffered as a player. Marino joined 14 other former players in filing the suit in late May, claiming the league knew about the link between concussions and long-term health problems but concealed the information from players. Last year a group of former players reached a $760 million deal for concussion-related injuries, but a federal judge said the amount was too low and would not approve the deal.
Ann B. Davis, the spunky maid on the 1970s sitcom The Brady Bunch, died on June 1 at age 88. Davis, whose career spanned five decades, won two Emmy Awards. The public image of her as “a strong, wonderful, lively human being” was accurate, said retired Episcopal bishop Bill Frey, whose family household Davis became part of after she re-embraced her Christian faith and left Hollywood. “The only part that’s inaccurate about that is she had trouble relating to small children, and she doesn’t cook.”
Lewis Katz, co-owner of The Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper, 72, died on May 31 in a fiery plane crash. The aircraft was attempting to take off from a Bedford, Mass., airport but instead raced off the end of the runway and down an embankment before bursting into flames. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the accident, which killed all seven passengers on the Katz-owned plane. Katz formerly owned part or all of the New Jersey Nets, the New Jersey Devils, and the New York Yankees.
Chester Nez, the last living member of the Navajo Code Talkers, died on June 4 at age 93. Nez was one of the original 29 Navajo the U.S. military recruited to create an unbreakable code during World War II. The complex, unwritten language had no alphabet and only about 30 non-Navajo could speak it at the time. From 1942 to 1945, the Code Talkers participated in every assault the U.S. Marines conducted in the Pacific theater. Philip Johnston, the son of a missionary to the Navajo, birthed the idea to use the language for secure communications.
President Barack Obama on May 30 announced embattled White House Press Secretary Jay Carney would step down in mid-June. Carney spent more than three years on the job, but during Obama’s second term he became a punchline for jokes on social media and late night shows for the way he handled questions about numerous administration scandals. Obama called Carney a good friend and a “great” press secretary. Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest, 39, will replace Carney.
The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) awarded imprisoned American pastor Saeed Abedini the 2014 Richard Land Distinguished Service Award on June 11 during the Southern Baptist Convention. Abedini, a U.S. citizen, is serving an eight-year sentence in Iran on dubious charges. His wife, Naghmeh Abedini, traveled to Baltimore to accept the award on his behalf. The ERLC also named the Green family, owners of Hobby Lobby, the 2014 John Leland Religious Liberty Award winners for mounting a legal challenge to Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate.