THE JUNE 4 OBITUARY FOR ACTRESS HILARY BROOKE HAD HER AS HAVING PLAYED OPPOSITE ROBERT YOUNG'S OLIVER BRADFORD IN THE MOVIE "THE ENCHANTED COLLEGE." THAT STARRING ROLE AS LAURA PENNINGTON WAS PLAYED BY DOROTHY MCGUIRE, AND MISS BROOKE PLAYED BEATRICE ALEXANDER. (PUBLISHED 06/05/99)
Christopher Cockerell, 88, the inventor of the hovercraft, died at a nursing home in Southampton on June 1. He had been ill for several months following a fall.
In the early 1950s, he settled in Norfolk, eastern England, to build tourist boats, but he also began work on his hovercraft, which could move across land or water on a cushion of air.
The first prototype hovercraft, the SR-N1, crossed the English Channel in June 1959. The first commercial service began in Britain in 1962 and across the English Channel in 1966.
Hillary Brooke, 84, the elegant blond actress who perfected the "other woman" role in dozens of films and played Gale Storm's adversary in the 1950s TV sitcom "My Little Margie," died May 25, the Associated Press reported in Bonsall, Calif.
Although Miss Brooke was never the leading lady, she worked with top actors and directors and in such projects as 1944's "Jane Eyre," which starred Orson Welles and Joan Fontaine.
Her other, diverse films included "The Enchanted Cottage" (1944) in which she played opposite Robert Young; "Road to Utopia" (1945) with Bob Hope and Bing Crosby; and Alfred Hitchcock's "The Man Who Knew Too Much" (1956). She played Roberta Townsend in "My Little Margie" from 1952 to 1955.
Vice President's Uncle
Everett LaFon, 78, an uncle of Vice President Gore and a retired firefighter in the West Tennessee city of Jackson, died June 1 at Gibson County (Tenn.) General Hospital. The cause of death was not announced.
Mr. LaFon was the brother of the vice president's 86-year-old mother, Pauline Gore of Carthage. Jackson was the LaFon family's home town when Mrs. Gore was growing up.
Gore said in a statement that he will remember Mr. LaFon as "a loving and proud father, a frank and honest adviser and a dear friend."
Kenneth Dodson, 91, who wrote popular books about his experiences in World War II, died May 24 of congenital heart disease, Parkinson's disease and malaria, the Associated Press reported in Stanwood, Wash.
Mr. Dodson spent 20 years in the merchant marine before enlisting in the Navy shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.
He saw action in nine major battles, including Okinawa and the invasion of Makin in the Gilbert Islands as part of the capture of Tarawa in 1943.
He was discharged in 1946 after his vocal cords were severely damaged when a machine gun mount tore loose during a training session.
After poet Carl Sandburg urged him to write about his wartime experiences, Mr. Dodson took writing classes at the University of Washington.
With the success of his first effort, "Away All Boats," published in 1954, Mr. Dodson and his family appeared on radio and television shows around the country. The book was the basis of a film by Universal Studios. His other books include "Stranger to the Shore," "China Pirates" and "Hector the Stowaway Dog," later made into a Walt Disney film.
His last book, "The Poet and the Sailor," was completed shortly before his death.