James Horner, 1953-2015


The creator of legendary soundtracks to Titanic, A Beautiful Mind, Aliens and countless other famous movies died yesterday in a plane crash in California.

"We have lost an amazing person with a huge heart and unbelievable talent," Sylvia Patrycja, his assistant, posted to Facebook. "He died doing what he loved. Thank you for all your support and love and see you down the road."

He was the only occupant of the small, single-seater plane, which went down about 60 miles north of Santa Barbara.

Horner, 61, won two Oscars for his soaring work on Titanic. In scoring Avatar, his work came to define the emotional landscape of the two most successful movies of all time. He was reportedly working on the score for Avatar's forthcoming sequel at the time of this death.

Director Ron Howard wrote that Horner would "live on through the ages." At her website, Titanic collaborator Celine Dion wrote that she was deeply saddened by the loss: "He will always remain a great composer in our hearts. James played an important part in my career. We will miss him."

Investigators are examining the crash site near Ventucopa, an unincorporated community in the upper Cuyama Valley.