Archive for Wednesday, August 1, 2001

People

August 1, 2001

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Heat zaps Queen Mum

The Queen Mother Elizabeth, who will celebrate her 101st birthday on Saturday, is suffering from mild heat exhaustion and has been advised to rest, her office said Tuesday.

The hugely popular mother of Queen Elizabeth II withdrew from a public engagement for today. Doctors said they will wait to see whether she recovers sufficiently to take part in birthday celebrations this weekend.

For the past week, temperatures have been above 86 degrees a heat wave by British standards.

Guitarist pleads innocent

R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck pleaded innocent Tuesday to assault and other charges in an alleged air-rage incident during a flight to Britain in April.

Buck, 44, made a brief appearance at Isleworth Crown Court in west London and was ordered to reappear for trial on Nov. 12. He was released on $28,600 bail. His wife, Stephanie, accompanied him to the hearing.

Buck is accused of assaulting two British Airways staff members, using threatening behavior, being drunk on board an aircraft and causing criminal damage during a flight from Seattle to London on April 21.

Tommy Lee pays debt to society

Tommy Lee is abiding by terms of probation for spousal abuse and is steadily working at completing a community service obligation, a prosecutor said.

Lee, who attended a brief hearing Monday, has completed domestic violence counseling and no longer is required to undergo random drug testing, Deputy Dist. Atty. Katherine Solazano said.

At issue Monday was whether Lee was working at eliminating his 450-hour community service obligation. He has logged more than 154 hours so far, the prosecutor said. The 38-year-old is on probation until May 26, 2003.

Musician died of natural causes

Lynyrd Skynyrd bassist Leon Wilkeson suffered from chronic liver and lung disease and apparently died of natural causes, a medical examiner in Florida said.

The cause of death will be officially determined after toxicological tests are conducted, St. Johns County medical examiner Terrence Steiner said. Those results will be available in two to three weeks.

Wilkeson, 49, a founding member of the Southern rock band, was found dead Friday in a Ponte Vedra Beach hotel room.

The band debuted in 1973 and was named after the members' high school gym teacher, Leonard Skinner.

Wilkeson survived a 1977 plane crash in Mississippi that killed the band's founder Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines and singer Cassie Gaines. Three others also died in the crash.

The group disbanded after the crash, but re-formed with others in 1987 for a reunion tour.

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