PROMINENT HAIR STYLIST VIDAL SASSOON DIES AT 84
- Vidal Sassoon, hair stylist and fashion world pioneer who created a natural look in the 1960s and built a multimillion-dollar business on his name, died on Wednesday, May 9, after a long battle with leukemia. He was 84, Reuters reported.
Sassoon died at his home in Los Angeles surrounded by loved ones and his wife of 20 years, Ronnie, his family said in a statement. "He will be greatly missed," they said.
Sassoon was dubbed a pioneer for coming up with so-called wash and wear looks - liberating many women from weekly salon trips to have their hair done.
But as much as he was a genius in the salon, Sassoon was a whiz in business. He began marketing his name, styles and cutting techniques in a worldwide line of beauty salons, hair-cutting schools and later, related lines of hair products.
Still, Sassoon never felt the profession that he put at the forefront of modern fashion received the respect it was owed.
"Hairdressing in general hasn't been given the kudos it deserves," Sassoon told Reuters in 2010. "It's not recognized by enough people as a worthy craft."
"If you get hold of a head of hair on somebody you've never seen before, cut beautiful shapes, cut beautiful architectural angles and she walks out looking so different - I think that's masterful," he said.
Born in London on January 17, 1928, the son of a poor Turkish-Jewish carpet salesman, Sassoon spent eight of his early years in an orphanage after his father abandoned his family. He quit school at 14, and his stepfather agreed to finance his apprenticeship as a hairdresser.
"It was my mother's idea," he once said of his entry into hairstyling. "Her feeling was that I didn't have the intelligence to pick a trade myself."
Apart from hairdressing interests, he set up the Vidal Sassoon Foundation to help the needy in educational pursuits both in Israel and abroad.
His family said a memorial service would be planned for a later date. Sassoon is survived by his wife, three children and grandchildren.
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- 1810 Birth of Gabriel Aivazovski in Feodosia (Ukraine). He died in 1880 in Tbilissi (Georgia).
- 1838 Birth of Viscount James Bryce (statesman). He served under Prime Minister William Gladstone. He was a founder of the League of Nations. He wrote on jurisprudence and political science. He vociferously condemned the Armenian Genocide by the Turkish government. He died in 1922.
- 1848 The Lazaryan College (Moscow) becomes the Institute of Western Languages.
- 1855 The Sultan orders, for the first time, the draft for the Christians in Turkey. The order was ineffective.
- 1920 Armenia's Revolutionary Military Committee in Alexandropol and proclaims the establishment of Soviet power in Armenia.
- 1923 Birth of Heydar Aliev, First Secretary of the Communist Party in Azerbaijan, Head of the Azeri Turk subdivision of the Soviet KGB, Member of the USSR Politbureau, and Head of Atheistic Propaganda under the Soviet regime. Committed Genocide against the Armenians of Nakhitshevan and Artsakh. Took over the presidency of Azerbaijan in 1993.
- 1941 The Ten-day Festival of Armenian Literature starts in Moscow (Russia).
- 1943 Garegeen the First (Hovsepyants) is anointed Catholicos of Cilicia in Antilias' Cathedral.