Fresh Air remembers the comic book writer with highlights from 2003 and 2005 interviews. Pekar, who died Monday, was the author of the series American Splendor, which captured the angst of a man struggling with the daily ups and downs of life.
As the chief of the Cherokee Nation for a decade, Wilma Mankiller championed health care and education — and tribe enrollment tripled. Mankiller died on Tuesday. Fresh Air remembers her with excerpts from a 1993 interview.
Unitarian minister Forrest Church believed that the knowledge that we must die makes us question what life means. Church, who died Sept. 24, 2009 after a long battle with cancer of the esophagus, was the author of Love and Death: My Journey through the Valley of the Shadow.
Former defense secretary Robert McNamara died Monday. In a 1995 interview with Terry Gross, McNamara reflects on Vietnam and admits his serious doubts about US policy and the decision-making that escalated the war.
A pioneering political leader in the fight against apartheid, for 13 years Suzman was the sole representative in South Africa's all-white Parliament to reject race discrimination. She died Thursday at 91.
The celebrated Irish memoirist, who had been battling lung cancer, died May 9. Her 1996 memoir — about growing up poor in the Ireland of the '40s and '50s — became a best-seller. Terry Gross talked to her in 2001.
Pulitzer Prize-winning writer William Styron died Wednesday of pneumonia at the age of 81. Styron's books include Lie Down in Darkness, The Confessions of Nat Turner (which won the Pulitzer) and Sophie's Choice, which was adapted into an Oscar-winning film starring Meryl Streep. His memoir Darkness Visible detailed his struggles with depression and suicidal impulses. This interview originally aired on Sept. 19, 1990.