Remembered as versatile mathematician, game wizard and polymath, John Horton Conway had limitless curiosity, which matched with his scientific originality. Although he is best known for devising the cellular automation called Game of Life, he made significant contributions to group theory, number theory, algebra, geometric topology, theoretical physics, combinatorial game theory and geometry. Conway published many outstanding papers in these fields.
Chinese ophthalmologist Li Wenliang was one of the first to identify the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan. In late 2019, he alerted his colleagues of an illness that resembled SARS but didn’t respond to usual treatment. He was reprimanded and later died of COVID-19. He is since regarded as a medical hero.
Zindzi Mandela was a South African poet and diplomat best known as the daughter of the famous anti-apartheid activist, Nelson Mandela. From 1996 to 1998, she also served as a temporary First Lady of South Africa. Over the years, she has been portrayed in films and TV films, such as Mrs Mandela (2009), Invictus (2009), and Mandela (1987).
Pakistani engineer Abdul Qadeer Khan was a major figure in the development of his country’s nuclear plans. His research also focused on uranium enrichment. He was later apparently involved in transfer of nuclear technology to Iran, among other countries, but was pardoned by then-president Pervez Musharraf.
Soumitra Chatterjee was an Indian film actor, director, writer, playwright, singer, and poet. He often collaborated with prominent director Satyajit Ray, with whom he worked in 14 films. A veteran actor with over 210 film appearances, he was the recipient of multiple prestigious awards, including the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India's highest award in cinema given by the government of India.
Urdu poet Rahat Indori had an illustrious and versatile career as a painter, a Bollywood lyricist, and a professor. A regular at poetry events such as Kavi Sammelan, he was known for his captivating couplets such as Kisi Ke Baap Ka Hindustan Thodi Hai. He died of COVID-19 in 2020.
Pediatric neurosurgeon James T. Goodrich was an expert in cranial reconstructive surgeries and also conducted multiple successful operations on separating conjoined twins. The Columbia University alumnus also had also served the US Marines during the Vietnam War. He was also fond of travel and surfing. He succumbed to COVID-19 at age 73.
Former senator from Oyo State in Nigeria, Abiola Ajimobi was previously an oil tycoon who headed the National Oil and Chemical Marketing Company as its MD/CEO. The first Oyo State governor to successfully serve 2 terms, he died of COVID-19 in 2020 at age 70.
Her activism and outspokenness had earned Princess María Teresa of Bourbon-Parma the nickname Red Princess. Part of the Spanish royal family, she was educated at the Sorbonne. She later supported the Carlist movement and was a champion of women’s rights, too. She eventually died of COVID-19 at age 86.
Hailed as one of the most celebrated Swedish actors, Sven Wollter was also an influential political activist, working for the Swedish communist party since his youth. Beginning his career on the stage, he debuted on screen as Gusten in Hemsöborna, gaining instant fame for it, continuing with his activism as well as acting till the very end.
Momcilo Krajisnik was a Bosnian Serb politician best known for co-founding the Serb Democratic Party alongside Radovan Karadžić. Although he was an important politician, Momčilo Krajišnik was accused of crimes against humanity in 2006 and was given a 20-year prison sentence.
Former Stanford University president and renowned neurobiologist Donald Kennedy had also been the chief editor of Science and the FDA commissioner. He is best remembered for his research on motor activity and the central nervous system, and his memoir, A Place in the Sun. He died of COVID-19 at age 88.
Christophe was a French singer and songwriter known for his hit songs Marionettes and J'ai entendu la mer. He began his career as a teenager and led a pop group. He rose to fame in his early 20s and had a successful career spanning several decades. He died during the global Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.