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Obituaries | PASSINGS

March 28, 2003|From Staff and Wire Reports

Alfonso Acampora, 61; Headed Program for Addiction Treatment

Alfonso Acampora, 61, the president and chief executive of Walden House, one of California's leading addiction treatment programs, was found dead Sunday in Berkeley. Police said the cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

Raised in the South Bronx in New York City, Acampora was a teenage gang member who overcame his own heroin addiction before moving to California.

He joined Walden House in 1971 and worked his way to the top, where he administered its $54-million annual budget and 550 full-time employees.

Walden House now has more than a dozen sites throughout the state where it offers programs to end drug dependency.

In recent months, Walden House has been criticized by the San Francisco Health Commission for failing to make timely financial reports. Much of the program's money for grants and contracts comes from the Health Commission.

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Ben Brady, 94; Writer, Producer of Radio, Early TV Shows

Ben Brady, 94, a writer and producer in the early days of television who also worked in radio, died March 20 at his home in Los Angeles.

Brady, a New York City native, wrote daytime radio serials to support himself while attending law school at St. Lawrence University. While practicing law, he wrote scripts for such radio shows as "The Thin Man," "Mr. & Mrs. North" and "Inner Sanctum."

After World War II, Brady moved to Hollywood to produce and direct for radio, including programs starring Dinah Shore and Steve Allen. He also wrote comedy for Fred Allen, Groucho Marx, and Ozzie and Harriet Nelson. For television, he produced "The Outer Limits," "Rawhide," "Perry Mason" and "Have Gun, Will Travel."

In the late 1950s, he was a founder of the Television Producers Guild of America, which later merged with the Producers Guild of America.

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Marjorie Silverstein, 72; Won Peabody Award for Investigative Reporting

Marjorie "Mickie" Silverstein, 72, an author, lecturer, and radio and television personality who won a Peabody Award in 1970 for radio-news investigative reporting, died March 15 in Los Angeles of complications from hepatitis.

Teaming up with friend Teddi Levison in the 1960s, Silverstein became a radio reporter at WRNG in Atlanta, where they won the Peabody for a half-hour documentary on strong-armed police tactics against blacks and hippies. They also hosted a daily talk show and later hosted a TV show in Philadelphia.

Relocating to Los Angeles in the 1970s, Silverstein and Levison hosted "The Mickie and Teddi Show" on KGBS for several years. They also co-hosted a weekly interview show on KHJ-TV, and Silverstein later hosted her own call-in radio show in Phoenix.

The two women collaborated on three books: "Have You Had It in the Kitchen?," "Marrying Again" and a novel, "Number One Sunset Blvd."

In recent years, the Chicago-born Silverstein served on the Los Angeles County Children's Planning Council.

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