Death of the year: Remembered in sadness and yet with a smile

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The Independent Online

Ron Cunningham: Seaside escapologist known as The Great Omani whose speciality was removing a straitjacket while hanging upside down with his trousers on fire.

Barbara Dainton: Last but one British survivor of the 'Titanic', the 10-month-old passenger lived to 96.

Pearl Dobbins: Las Vegas showgirl, actress, modeller of 44DD bras, gangster's moll, convicted perjurer and charm school instructor.

Jorge Immendorf: German artist who, in 2003, was found by police in flagrante with seven prostitutes and a supply of cocaine nestling in a Versace ashtray. At trial, asked for 27 other orgies to be taken into consideration.

Bobby Pickett: Performer and composer of legendary one-off hit 'The Monster Mash'. Would later introduce the number at concerts with the words: "I'd like to perform a medley of my hit."

Leslie Wright: Former courier from Cambridge delivered to the crematorium in his old van inside a cardboard coffin marked "Fragile", "This Way Up" and "Handle With Care".