BEIJING (AP) — Zhang Hanzhi, an elegant Chinese diplomat who was Mao Zedong's English tutor and U.S. President Richard Nixon's interpreter during his historic 1972 trip to China, died Jan. 26. She was 72.
Zhang died in Beijing from a lung-related illness, state media reported without giving details.
Her funeral will be held Friday in the capital's Babaoshan Revolutionary Cemetery, an honor given to the Communist Party's elite.
Born in Shanghai in 1935, Zhang was the illegitimate daughter of a shop assistant and the son of a prominent family. She was adopted by Zhang Shizhao, a well-known lawyer who had been involved in the custody battle.
Her family moved to Beijing in 1949 and four years later, Zhang entered the Beijing Foreign Studies University, where she taught after graduating with a master's degree.
She met Mao in 1950, at a party to celebrate the first anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, and again in 1963 at Mao's 70th birthday. He seemed relaxed and happy and asked to be her student when he found out she taught English. "Why not?" he asked, when she said she wouldn't dare.
The lessons abruptly stopped in 1964 as the devastating Cultural Revolution began taking shape. Zhang and her family and friends were persecuted although she said Mao provided protection at various times.
Louisa Horton Hill
NEW YORK (AP) — Louisa Horton Hill, a stage, film and television actress and former wife of "The Sting" director George Roy Hill, died Friday. She was 87.
Horton, who used her own name professionally, died at Lillian Booth Actors' Fund Home in Englewood, N.J., her daughter-in-law, Sandy McCormick Hill, said Tuesday.
Horton made her film debut in the 1948 "All My Sons" opposite Burt Lancaster and Edward G. Robinson. Other movie credits include the 1976 film "Swashbuckler," starring James Earl Jones and Robert Shaw.
Horton met George Roy Hill while both were actors in a Shakespeare repertory company. They married in 1951 and remained close even after they divorced in the 70s.
Horton appeared on Broadway in the 1940s, including as an understudy for the role of Sally in "The Voice of the Turtle," according to the play's 1947 playbill. She was described as the only actress to play Sally in all three companies of the romantic comedy.
In 1989, she played the mother of a lesbian daughter in the off-Broadway production "The Blessing."
Horton, who also appeared in many live television dramatic series, was born in China and raised in Haiti and the Washington D.C. area. She lived in Manhattan for nearly 50 years.
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Former Auburn University President Harry M. Philpott, who guided the university through more than 14 years of growth and influenced public education throughout the state, died Monday. He was 90.
University spokesman Brian Keeter announced Philpott's death Monday. Philpott died at the Bethany House hospice center in Auburn after being in declining health for several years.
"Dr. Philpott was an inspirational leader and a champion for Auburn's faculty. His focus on academics is still felt today and represents a substantial part of his legacy," Auburn President Jay Gogue said.
Philpott left his job as academic vice president of the University of Florida to become president of Auburn in 1965. Retiring President Ralph Draughon had encouraged him to apply.
Former Gov. Albert Brewer recalled that Philpott "just fit in immediately" and was popular with students, alumni and politicians at the capital.
"He gave Auburn its best years since World War II," Brewer said Monday.
BOSTON (AP) — Keith Ryan, an American diplomat posted to Pakistan and the son of Boston Globe sports columnist Bob Ryan, was found dead in his Islamabad residence Monday. He was 37.
Ryan apparently took his own life Monday just before a scheduled return to Maryland to visit his wife and 8-year-old triplets, the State Department said.
Pakistani authorities are still investigating the death.
Ryan was an attache for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.
Ryan previously worked for the Border Patrol and the Immigration and Naturalization Service where he was assigned to the violent gang task force.
Bob Ryan remembered his son for his academic determination and conservative political outlook that helped lead him to a career in government service. Keith Ryan was a graduate of Hingham (Mass.) High School, Trinity College in Connecticut, the London School of Economics and Boston College Law School.