Magic Johnson, Marie Osmond and Simon Cowell are among the celebs celebrating big ones
by Sarah Elizabeth Adler and Gatwiri Muthara , AARP, December 26, 2018|Comments: 0
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John McEnroe, Feb. 16
He made history in 1977 at age 18 when he became the youngest man ever to reach the Wimbledon semifinals — a feat that foreshadowed the record-breaking 155 tennis titles he’d win over the course of his career. Now retired, McEnroe still plays, but for fun; he’s said he loves the game more now than when he “was the best in the world.”
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Tom Arnold, March 6
This funnyman started in the Roseanne writer’s room in the 1990s, eventually writing himself onto the show for a stint as “Arnie Thomas.” His latest endeavors are fatherhood (he credits becoming a dad at age 54 for his 100-pound weight loss) and investigative journalism, as host of a recent Viceland political series.
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Emma Thompson, April 15
She shot to the top as one of Britain’s leading ladies in the 1990s, and remains the only person to have nabbed an Oscar win for both acting (as best actress in 1992’s Howards End) and writing, for her 1995 adaptation of Sense and Sensibility. Her achievements were honored by the queen herself recently, when Thompson received the title of “Dame Commander.”
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Randy Travis, May 4
He’s a country star whose chart-topping hits brought him awards and fans starting in the mid-1980s. But after suffering a stroke in 2013, Travis had to relearn how to sing, speak, and play the guitar. He chronicles this journey in his memoir, Forever and Ever, Amen (May 2019).
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Martha Quinn, May 11
Quinn — known by perhaps every Gen-Xer transfixed by music videos as teenagers — was one of MTV’s original video jockeys, hosting on the network until 1991 and earning legions of fans along the way. A series of acting and hosting gigs followed, but these days, she’s back to music, playing the best of the ‘80s as a host for iHeartRadio’s weekday morning show.
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Ving Rhames, May 12
He played tough guy Marsellus Wallace in the 1994 Tarantino classic Pulp Fiction before taking on the role of computer hacker Luther Stickell in the Mission: Impossible series. In the latest, Mission: Impossible - Fallout(pictured above), one of 2018’s top-grossing films, he saves the day (spoiler alert!) in a classic action-movie bomb-defusing scene.
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Richie Sambora, July 11
A founding member of Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora was the group’s lead guitarist for 30 years. He left the band in 2013, but joined the group in 2018 for its induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He continues to rock with his girlfriend and fellow guitarist Orianthi as the group RSO.
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Magic Johnson, Aug. 14
The legendary Los Angeles Lakers star stunned fans with his announcement that he had tested positive for HIV in 1991 — but, thanks to advances in medicine, the disease didn’t derail his life or his accomplishments. The NBA giant continues to work on the sidelines as president of operations for the Lakers and as CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises.
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Jason Alexander, Sept. 23
He was only 29 when he began his nine years as George Costanza on one of the most successful television sitcoms in history. But there’s life after Seinfeld: Alexander has directed musicals, starred in his own one-man show — and now is playing Colonel Sanders in KFC ads.
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Simon Cowell, Oct. 7
Anyone competing to be the next big star definitely wants to get a nod of approval from this no-nonsense, surly judge of some of the world’s most popular singing competitions. Born in London, he’s a longtime TV and music producer famous in Britain, but it wasn’t until American Idol that U.S. audiences would come to know the sometimes savagely critical Cowell.
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Marie Osmond, Oct. 13
The only daughter of the legendary Osmond family, Marie Osmond is Hollywood royalty – both as a solo artist and also as a duo with her brother Donny on their TV variety show Donny & Marie in the 1970s. (Remember? He was a little bit country, she was a little bit rock 'n’ roll.) This year the iconic siblings perform their greatest hits in a long-running show at the Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel & Casino.