Celebs we lost in 2021

A huge number of famous faces have passed away this year

Dianne Durham (died February 4th, aged 52)

Celebs we lost in 2021 1
Dianne Durham and her husband Tom Drahozal | Credit: Tom Drahozal / Facebook

Artistic gymnast Dianne Durham died after a short illness at a Chicago hospital. Durham rose to prominence after winning the all-around senior title at the women’s U.S National Championships in 1983. Her overall performance in the competition earned her four gold medals and the distinction of being the first African American gymnast to become the U.S. all-around champion.

After injuries and competition stipulations prevented her from competing in the 1984 Summer Olympics, Durham retired from the competition the following year. Durham became a coach at the University of Illinois in Chicago and later ran her own gymnastics school Skyline Gymnastics. Durham was inducted to the U.S. Gymnastics Regional Hall of Fame in 2017.

“Her personality was bubbly and she was a very charismatic individual who was respected and admired by a lot of people,” Durham’s husband Tom Drahozal said of the late athlete-turned-coach. “Whether highest level or recreation class, all the students admired her because she treated them all the same.”

Interesting facts about BTS
  • The group name, “BTS” stands for the Korean expression Bangtan Sonyeondan which translates to “Bulletproof Boy Scouts”. Band member J-Hope said that they chose this name because it represents BTS’s desire “to block out stereotypes, criticisms, and expectations that aim on adolescents like bullets.” But that isn’t the only meaning behind the name. In 2017, BTS said, as part of their new brand identity, that their name would also stand for Beyond the Scene” which extended their name to mean “growing youth BTS who is going beyond the realities they are facing, and going forward.”
  • BTS was originally intended to be a hip-hop group, similar to YG Entertainment’s 1TYM. This was because Big Hit Entertainment CEO Bang Si-hyuk met with RM and was very impressed by his rapping talents. However, Bang Si-hyuk changed his mind and decided that today’s youth needed “a hero who can lend them a shoulder to lean on, even without speaking a single word.”
  • BTS has said that all of the following musicians have inspired their music; Post Malone, Eminem, Seo Taiji and Boys, Nas, Kanye West, Drake, Charlie Puth, Danger, and Queen.
  • The band’s first English-language single, “Dynamite”, was released on August 21st. Its video broke the YouTube record for the most viewed music video premiere, grabbing the attention of three million viewers, and it set a new record for the most viewed video on the first day of release. “Dynamite” is also the first music video on YouTube to surpass 100 million views in less than one day.
  • BTS has been often labeled as “easily the biggest and most successful name in K-pop in the world” that can “do things no other name in their genre can.” Time magazine has gone as far as calling them the “Princes of Pop.”