Leighton Gage
crime novelist

Leighton Gage, a crime novelist whose books were inspired by his experiences in Brazil, died July 26 at his home in Ocala, Fla. He was 71.

The cause was pancreatic cancer, a daughter, Melina Gage Ratcliffe, said.

Mr. Gage spent years living in Brazil and set his novels there. The books featured Chief Inspector Mario Silva.

There were six books in the series, and a seventh, “The Ways of Evil Men,” is scheduled to be published early next year.

Hugo L. Black Jr.

Hugo L. Black Jr., a lawyer in Miami for many years and the son of Supreme Court Justice Hugo L. Black, died July 29 at his home in Miami. He was 91.

His daughter Margaret Black confirmed the death but did not disclose the cause.

Hugo Lafayette Black Jr. was born in Birmingham, Ala. He was 4 when his father was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1926. His father was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1937 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and served on the court until shortly before his death.

The younger Mr. Black served in the Army during World War II and was a 1946 graduate of the University of Alabama. He graduated from Yale Law School in 1949.

He established a law practice in Miami in the 1950s. His clients included entertainer Jackie Gleason.

Mr. Black’s father died in 1971. Four years later, Mr. Black published the book, “My Father: A Remembrance.”

His wife, Bessie Graham Hobson Black, died in 2000. A son, Hugo L. Black III, died in 2007.

Survivors include two daughters.

John E. Allen
Tuskegee Airman

John E. Allen, a retired Air Force master sergeant who served with the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II and later earned honors for his Air Force service during the Vietnam War, died July 30 in New Mexico. He was 84.

Harold Bailey, president of the Albuquerque chapter of the NAACP, said Mr. Allen, a resident of Rio Rancho, N.M., died from multiple myeloma.

Sgt. Allen was drafted into the Army Air Forces out of high school in Live Oak, Fla., in 1945. At 17, he was assigned to the 332nd Fighter Wing of the Tuskegee Airmen — a group that broke racial barriers by becoming the first black aviators in the U.S. military.

He did not see combat in World War II, but during the Vietnam War he received the Air Force Commendation Medal for assisting in disarming two dozen 500-pound bombs that were dropped from the wing of a B-52.

Sgt. Allen and about 300 original Tuskegee Airmen were awarded a Congressional Gold Medal in 2007. In retirement, he spoke about the Tuskegee Airmen and founded a New Mexico chapter of the fabled flying group.

Michael Ansara

Michael Ansara, a television and movie actor whose roles included a Klingon on “Star Trek,” died July 31 at his home in Calabasas, Calif. He was 91.

A former agent, Michael B. Druxman, told the New York Times that Mr. Ansara had Alzheimer’s disease.

Besides the “Star Trek” role, Mr. Ansara appeared on dozens of TV shows, including “Broken Arrow,” “Law of the Plainsman,” “I Dream of Jeannie,” “Hawaii Five-0” and “Murder, She Wrote.”

His film credits include “Julius Caesar,” “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea,” “The Greatest Story Ever Told” and “The Comancheros,” with John Wayne.

Mr. Ansara’s marriage to actress Barbara Eden ended in divorce.

Their son, Matthew Ansara, died from a drug overdose in 2001.

Survivors include his wife of 36 years, actress Beverly Kushida.

— News services and staff reports