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Pele Biography

Posted On December 1st, 2010 By Celebrity Biographies

Edson Arantes do Nascimento

Pele (Edson Arantes do Nascimento)

Pele is one of the greatest soccer players ever. In his career, he has scored over 1200 goals, including several World Club, World Cup Championships and has covered 1360 games. This automatically translates to one goal per game.

Early Life

Pele was born as Edson Arantes do Nascimento on  23rd of October 1940. He happens to be the son of Dondinho (a Fluminense footballer) and his mother was Maria Celeste Arantes. His parents named him after Thomas Edison, the American inventor, however in order to create a unique name; his parents removed the “I” from the name and called him ‘Edson’. As the reports suggest, there seems to be a mistake on his documents, including the birth certificate and shows his name as “Edison”. His family originally nicknamed him as “Dico”. He received the name “Pele” only once he reached school, where the name was given to him according to the way he pronounced the name of his favourite player, Bilé. If we were to read his autobiography, Pele says that he had no idea how he got the name or what it meant. The only thing he knew that it was Hebrew for miracle and the word seemed to have no meaning in Portuguese.

Pele was brought up in Bauru, São Paulo and lived his life in poverty. He made some extra money while working as a servant in various tea shops. As a child, he could not afford proper football and was found playing with a sock filled with newspaper or a grapefruit tied with a string. When he turned 15, he later joined the junior team of Santos FC. Prior to joining the senior team, he played in the junior club for one season.

While his time at Santos, Pele got an opportunity to play along some of the gifted players of the time including Coutinho, Pepe and Zito. On 7th September 1956, Pelé made his debut for the Santos team and scored one goal against Corinthians. In the season of 1957, he was selected in a starting place and then he became the top scorer in the league, at the age of 16.

Personal Life

In 1966, Pele was married to Rosemarie Cholby, however they ended up being divorced in 1978. He later married a psychologist called Assiria Seixas Lemos. He had three children out of his first marriage.

Soccer Career
On July 7, 1957, Pele was asked to be a part of the national team of Brazil. He played his first international match against Argentina, in which he scored the first ever goal for his country. He then played his first international match against USSR in the World Cup of 1958. Pele happened to be the youngest player of the tournament and scored his first goal in the quarter finals against Wales. This was the deciding goal of the match, which took Brazil into the semi-finals. At just 17 years, Pele became the youngest player to score a World Cup goal on June 19, 1958. One of the goals that he scored in this World Cup is still considered to be one of the best goals in the history of soccer.

While Pele was still in the team, Brazil won three World Cups championships of 1962, 1966 as well as 1970. As soon as the 1962 World Cup ended, a few of the wealthiest European clubs wanted to sign Pele; however Brazil then declared him as the “national treasure” of the country.

On November 19th, 1969, pele scored the 1000th goal, which is now known as the “O Milesimo”. According to him, the goal that he scored against Sao Paulo at the Rua Javari stadium in 1959 happens to be the greatest goal of his life. Pele scored a “gol de placa” in March 1961. This goal was so impressive that it is still being remembered as the most beautiful goal. As far as the history is concerned, one of the most significant moments were when the Nigerian Civil War declared a ceasefire for 48 hours, just to watch Pele in an exhibition match.

On July 18th, 1971, Pele played his final international match in Rio de Janeiro against Yugoslavia.

After Soccer

Jose Alves de Araujo, a long time friend of Pele owns a company called Prime Licensing. This company is responsible for maintaining Pele’s brand along with his existing contracts including Pele L’uomo, Puma AG, Fremantle Media, Pelestation, QVC along with Pele Arena coffee places. Pele is active with his ambassadorial work for several organisations across the world. He was appointed as the UN ambassador for environment and ecology, in the year 1992. He was appointed as “Extraordinary Minister for Sport” in 1995 and was also the recipient of the Brazil’s Gold Medal. Later on he also served as the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. He took active steps to eliminate corruption within the Brazil football that was later referred to as the “Pele Law”. In 1997, he was honoured as the “knight” in the British Empire.

He has worked on several autobiographies, documentaries and semi-documentaries, along with a few musicals. Pelé was brought in as the Honorary President on August 1st, 2010 to revive the team “New York Cosmos”, so as to prepare them for the Major League Soccer.

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Albert Einstein Biography

Posted On September 20th, 2010 By Celebrity Biographies

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein was a philosopher, a theoretical physicist and an author who is considered as one of the best and the most influential scientists of all times. He is also called the ‘Father of Modern Physics’. He incepted the relativity theory and made significant contributions to the growth of quantum mechanics, cosmology and statistical mechanics. He was awarded the prestigious Nobel Prize in 1921 for his discovery of the laws of photoelectric effect and his overall contribution to theoretical physics.

Albert Einstein has published more than 150 non-scientific and 300 scientific works. In addition, he has profusely commented on several political and philosophical subjects. His innovative approach to science and great intelligence has earned him the reputation of a ‘genius’.

Early Life and Education

Albert Einstein was born on 14th March, 1879 in Ulm, a part of the German Empire. His father, Hermann Einstein, was an engineer and a salesman, whereas his mother Pauline Einstein was a housewife. The family moved to Munich in the year 1880, where his father started a company called ‘Elektrotechnische Fabrik J. Einstein & Cie’ along with his uncle. This company manufactured electrical equipments running on direct current.

Einstein belonged to the family of Jews and he attended a Catholic school from the age of 5. Even with suffering from speech difficulties, Einstein was a topper in elementary school. While growing up, Einstein built different models and mechanical devices for amusement. He also started showing a natural talent for mathematics in school. At the age of 10, he was introduced to a poor Jewish medical student called Max Talmud in the year 1889. He introduced Einstein to mathematics, philosophy and some important texts in science. His father’s company failed in 1894 and the family moved to Italy in search of a newer business.

Einstein stayed back in Munich to complete his studies at Luitpold Gymnasium. His parents wanted him to pursue a career in electrical engineering but Einstein protested against the teaching methods at school and moved back to Italy with his parents. During this time, he wrote his first scientific investigative study on ‘Aether in Magnetic Fields’.

Later on, he applied directly to ETH (Eidgenössische Polytechnische Schule) in Zurich; however he lacked the pre-requisites for the program. He was required to give the entrance test where he failed even while scoring exceptional marks in physics and mathematics. His family sent him to Aarau to complete secondary school. He stayed with Professor Jost Winteler and his family. He studied about the Maxwell’s theory of electromagnetic waves. He graduated at the age of 17 and renounced his citizenship with the German Empire, so as to avoid the service in military. In 1896, Einstein enrolled for a program in physics and mathematics at a Polytechnic in Zurich and graduated in 1900.

Marriages & Family

Albert Einstein met his future wife Mileva Maric during his course at the Polytechnic in Zurich. The couple got married in January 1903 and they had two sons called Hans and Eduard. In 1914, Einstein moved to Berlin whereas his wife remained in Zurich with the sons. After living apart for five years, they divorced on 14th February, 1919. Meanwhile, Einstein had a relationship with Elsa Lowenthal since 1912. They got married on 2nd June 1919 and moved to United States. Elsa was diagnosed of serious kidney and heart problems in 1935, and she later died in December 1936.

Academic Career

Einstein wrote a paper on ‘capillary forces’ of a straw in 1901, which was published in the reputed ‘Annalen der Physik’. In 1903, he acquired a full time job as an examiner at the Swiss Patent Office. He completed his thesis on 30th April 1905 along with his professor of Experimental Physics called ‘Alfred Kleiner’. University of Zurich awarded Einstein a PhD after the completion of his dissertation on different molecular dimensions. 1905 has been a ‘miracle year’ in the life of Einstein since he published four revolutionary papers on the laws of photoelectric effect, special relativity, Brownian motion and the equivalence of energy and matter. These papers brought him a lot of recognition as far as the academic world was concerned. One of these papers on photoelectric effect also brought him the Nobel Prize in 1921.

By the year 1908, he was recognised as one of the leading scientist and was later appointed as a professor at the University of Bern. The subsequent year, he quit lectureship as well as the patent office and took up a position as a lecturer in University of Zurich. In 1911, he became a full professor at the University in Prague called Karl-Ferdinand. He was appointed as a director of the ‘Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics’ and moved back to Germany in 1914. He became the president of the ‘German Physical Society’ in 1916.

Based on his theory about general relativity, Albert Einstein had calculated that light emitted by other stars would be bent due to the gravitational force of Sun. After these calculations in 1911, Sir Arthur Eddington confirmed these observations during a solar-eclipse expedition of May 1919. Einstein became world famous after the international media reported these studies. However much later, numerous questions were raised about the accuracy of these calculations. Relativity was considered to be one of the most controversial topics of those times and hence the Nobel Prize was awarded to him for his explanation of the photoelectric laws. In addition, he was also awarded the Copley Medal in 1925, a prestigious honour from the Royal Society.

Death

Albert Einstein suffered from internal bleeding due to the rupture of the abdominal aortic aneurysm in 1948. However this was surgically reinforced by Dr. Rudolph Nissen. He experienced the same bleeding again on 17th April 1955. Einstein did not believe in surgery since he did not believe in artificial extension of life. He died at the age of 76 on the same day itself, while he was hospitalized at the Princeton Hospital. His remains were cremated but his ashes were sprinkled all around the grounds of Institute of Advanced Studies. While performing the autopsy, Thomas Stoltz Harvey, the pathologist in the Princeton Hospital removed Albert Einstein’s brain without informing his family, so that neuroscience would be able to find something that made the scientist this intelligent.

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Diego Armando Maradona Biography

Posted On September 10th, 2010 By Celebrity Biographies

Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona is considered to be one of the best footballers of all times. He happens to be an Argentinean player and currently manages the Argentine National Team. As far as his international career is concerned, he scored a total of 34 goals and earned as many as 91 caps. He appeared in 4 FIFA world cup tournaments and captained a win for his team in 1986 against West Germany. He was endowed with the “Golden Ball Award” as the best player of the tournament. During his professional club career, he played for Boca Juniors, Argentinos Juniors, Sevilla, Napoli and Newell’s Old Boys. Maradona was one of the first players to receive world-record fees for his contracts. Amidst several controversies, Maradona became the head coach of the Argentinean National Team in 2008.

Early Years

Diego Maradona was born on 30th October 1960 and belonged to Lanus, Buenos Aries. Although being born in Lanus, he was raised in a town called ‘Villa Fiorito’ located on the southern outskirts of the province. He happened to be the first son in the family after three daughters. He also had two younger brothers called Hugo and Eduardo, both of whom became successful football players.

While playing in his neighborhood club called “Estrella Roja”, he was spotted by a talent scout at the age of 10. He joined as a junior with the Argentinos Juniors and as a ball boy, he amused the audience with his football skills during the half time break.

Personal Life

Diego Maradona was born to mother Dalma Salvadore Franco and father Diego Maradona Snr. On 7th November, 1989, Maradona married his long-time fiancée in Buenos Aries called Claudia Villafane. He has two daughters Dalma Nerea and Giannina Dinorah. Maradona has admitted in his autobiography that he has not been faithful with his wife and refers to her as the only ‘love’ of his life.

Maradona and his wife divorced in 2004, on mutual consent and continued to remain friends thereafter. They are often spotted together on FIFA events and other sporting occasions. After the divorce, Claudia went on to pursue her career as a theatre producer.

During the proceedings of his divorce, Maradona revealed that he fathered a son called Diego Sinagra in Italy. However, the Italian courts ruled this out in 1993. As of now, Diego Sinagra is a footballer in Italy.

Football Career

Maradona made his first professional football debut on 20th October 1976 with a club called Argentinos Juniors. He played with the club for five years, until he was offered a £1m contract with Boca Juniors. He received his first league medal while playing with the squad in 1982. After the world cup of 1982, he was transferred to Barcelona, Spain for a contract fee of £5m. During his time in Barcelona, he used to get in disputes with the team managers especially the club president called Josep Lluís Núñez. He was then transferred to Napoli, Italy for a world-record fee of £6.9m.

Maradona reached the peak of his football career during his time with Napoli. He led the team to several Italian Championships and soon became one of the most sought after players of the world

International Career

During his time at Napoli, Maradona found his fame in international football. While playing for the Argentina National Team, he played 4 FIFA Tournaments. He led the Argentinean team to the World Cup in 1986 and came second during the 1990 World Cup.

His full international debut happened when he was only 16 on 27th February 1977, in a match against Hungary. The goal made by Maradona during the quarter final match against England in the 1986 world cup is voted as the ‘Goal of the Century’ through an online poll conducted by FIFA in 2002. It is regarded as one of the greatest goals in the history of football.

Playing Style

Diego Maradona was extremely technical with the football, along with being a strategic team player. He could effectively run through limited spaces and would often fool the defenders. Apart from being short, he was extremely strong on the field and could hold the ball for longer duration, until he spotted a gap or a teammate.

Dribbling at full speed is one of his trademark moves and he is known to deliver accurate passes while approaching the goal. A reverse-cross pass shot, also known as the “rabona” was one of his preferred shots. Maradona has proved to be a dangerous free kicker. Diego Maradona was a predominant left-footer and he would often use his left foot, even if the ball would be ideally placed for a right foot shot.

Problems

While playing for Napoli in Italy, Maradona faced a lot of personal problems. He continued the use of cocaine and faced a fine of US $70,000 for missing practices and games, apparently due to stress. There was a huge scandal regarding the existence of an illegitimate son and he was also suspected of his relationship with Camorra. He was banned for 15 months from Napoli since he failed a drug test for cocaine. Maradona quit the club in disgrace in the year 1992. Thereafter he joined Sevilla, after a break of 2 years from professional football.

Due to his addiction to cocaine, his play was affected greatly. His health suffered majorly after his retirement and he had to be rushed to the emergency room while vacationing in Uruguay. The doctors detected damage in the heart muscles and traces of cocaine were also found in his blood. On his return to Argentina, he moved to Cuba to follow a strict drug rehab plan.

Maradona is known to have a tendency to put on weight and suffered from obesity. In March 2005, he had to undergo gastric bypass surgery. He appeared on Argentinean national television on May 8, 2007 and claimed that he had not consumed drugs or alcohol in the last two years.

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Johnny Cash Biography

Posted On July 20th, 2010 By Celebrity Biographies

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash is often referred to as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. He was an American singer, actor, songwriter and author. Although he is majorly remembered for his contribution in country music, his tunes have also spanned across different genres such as rock and roll. He is specifically recognized for his profound, characteristic deep baritone voice coupled with a humble demeanor. His concerts typically start with his introduction line ‘Hi this is Johnny Cash’ and then usually proceed with ‘Folsom Prison Blues’.

Early Life

Johnny Cash was born on February 26th, 1932 in Kingsland, Arkansas. He belonged to a royal descent from Scotland, however he discovered this only after searching for his ancestry. In his younger days, he believed that he was majorly Irish and partly belongs to Native America. Even after learning about his ancestry, he still remained compassionate towards Native Americans and this was clearly portrayed in his songs from the album called ‘Bitter Tears’.

Johnny Cash was given the name J.R. Cash since his parents could not agree on a single name. At the time when he enlisted for US Air Force, he had to change his name since the military would not accept initials for a name. Hence, he took a name John R. Cash. When he signed the Sun records in 1955, he adopted ‘Johnny’ as his stage name.

Johnny was one of the seven children to parents Ray and Carrie Cash. Tommy Cash, his younger brother, also became one of the successful country artists. He started singing songs while working with his family in cotton farms at the age of 5. His family experienced a lot of personal and economic struggles during the ‘Great Depression’, which was reflected in a majority of his songs. His early memories of music were dominated by radio and gospel music. His mother as well his childhood friend introduced him to writing songs and playing guitar. He used to sing at the local radio station in childhood and years later, he released an album of gospel songs as a tribute called ‘My Mother’s Hymn book’. Cash was highly influenced by the traditional Irish songs.

Later on, Cash was enlisted in the US Air Force and was posted in Landsberg, Germany as a code intercept operator, where he developed his first band called ‘The Landsburg Barbarians’. He then returned to Texas after being respectfully released as a sergeant.

Marriages

During his Air Force training in San Antonio, Johnny met Vivian Liberto at a skating rink when she was only 17. The couple dated for three weeks before Cash left for Germany and stayed in touch thereafter. After being discharged, they got married on 7th August, 1954. They had four daughters out of this marriage. However with increasing drug and alcohol abuse, constant alliance with other women, extreme closeness with June Carter and several other affairs urged Liberto to file for a divorce in the year 1966.
Jonny Cash finally proposed June Carter, a fellow country singer he met 12 years ago, in a live performance. They got married on 1st March 1968 and they had one child out of the marriage. The couple worked together and produced some of the biggest hits of all times ‘Ring of Fire. They won two Grammys for their duets, during their professional relationship of 35 years.

Career

After getting married to Liberto, the couple moved to Tennessee. He visited the Sun records studio with the hope of getting a music contract. However when he met the producer Sam Phillips, he was told that his gospel songs were unmarketable. With a lot of improvements, he finally impressed the producer with songs like ‘Cry, Cry, Cry’ and ‘Hey Porter’, which were released by Sun studios in 1955.

His next record called ‘Folsom Prison Blues’ made it to the top 5 country songs whereas his other record called ‘I Walk the Line’ topped the country charts and was entered the top 20 of the pop charts. After the success of ‘Home of the Blues’ in 1957, he recorded an album with Sun. Although he was recording best-selling songs, he felt constrained with a small label. Thereafter he signed an attractive deal with Columbia Records and recorded one of his biggest hits called ‘Don’t take your guns’. During the 1960’s, he toured with the Carter Family. In the year 1961, he acted in a film called ‘5 Minutes to Live’ which was later released as ‘Door-to-Door Maniac’.

Last Years and Death

Johnny Cash was diagnosed with Shy-Drager Syndrome, a neurodegenerative disease, in the year 1997. Later on, he was diagnosed of autonomic neuropathy, often linked with diabetes. Due to this illness, he was forced to shorten his touring. In 1998, he has to be hospitalized due to severe pneumonia that damaged his lungs to a great extent. His last two American albums called ‘The Solitary Man’ and ‘The Man Comes Around’ released in 2002 contained his response to the diseases in the form of songs.

His 73-years old wife June Carter died on 15th May 2003 and had asked him to continue recording. Cash performed a few shows thereafter. On 5th July 2003, he gave his last public performance as a tribute to his wife. Four months after the death of his wife June Carter, his health worsened due to diabetes and was hospitalized at a hospital in Nashville. He died at 2am on 12th September 2003. Cash was buried in Hendersonville Memory gardens, next to his wife. One of his final works called ‘A Hundred Highways’ produced by Rick Rubin was released after his death on 4th July 2006. The album was an instant hit and got the first position on the charts. On 26th February 2010, Rick Rubin along with the Cash Family released another posthumous record called ‘Aint No Grave’ to mark the 78th birthday of Johnny Cash.

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Nelson Mandela Biography

Posted On July 10th, 2010 By Celebrity Biographies

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela is one of the most popular names in the world. He served as the South African president from 1994 to 1999. Before his act as a president, he led the armed wing of ANC (African National Congress) called the Umkhonto We Sizwe. Being arrested in 1962, he spent 27 years in prison (most of them on Robben Island), serving charges of sabotage. After his release on February 11, 1990, Nelson Mandela involved himself into negotiations, finally leading to multi-racial democracy in the year 1994. He is also referred to as ‘Madiba’ in South Africa, which is an honorary title given to him by the other elderly members of his claim. During the span of four decades, he received more than 250 awards, including the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.

Early Life

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was born on 18th July, 1918. He was born in a small village called Mvezo, located in the province of Umtata. Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa, Mandela’s father was the chief of this town and as soon as he protested against the colonial authorities, the chief was deprived of his rights and the family was forced to migrate to Qunu.

Nelson Mandela’s father had four wives with a total of thirteen children, nine girls and four boys. Nelson was a child of his father’s third wife called Nosekeni Fanny. His middle name ‘Rolihlahla’ meant ‘pulling a branch of a tree’, but in this context it meant ‘troublemaker’. Mandela became the first and the only member of the family to attend school and his teacher ‘Miss Mdingane’ gave him his English name ‘Nelson’. At the age of 9, Mandela lost his father due to tuberculosis. Thereafter, regent Jongintaba took care of him as a guardian.

Nelson attended the Wesleyan Mission School, which was located next to the regent’s palace. According to the Thembu custom, he attended the Clarkebury Boarding School at the age of 16. Instead of the usual three years, Mandela completed his Junior Certificate in two years. At the age of 19, he was highly interested in running and boxing at school. He later enrolled himself at the Fort Hare University for a Bachelor of Arts program. During this course, he met his lifelong friend Oliver Tambo. By the end of first year in college, he was actively involved with the Student’s Representative Council. After consistent boycott against the university policies, he was asked to leave the university and he could return only if he agreed to accept the conditions of the university. During his term at the prison, he took an external program in Bachelor of Laws from the University of London.

On his return from the Fort Hare University, the regent arranged his marriage and in protest to the arrangement, he relocated to Johannesburg. As soon as he reached Johannesburg, he was employed as a guard at the local mine. He then worked at the Witkin, Sidelsky and Edelman law firm in Johannesburg.

Political Career

Nelson Mandela actively involved himself into politics after the Afrikaner-dominated party won the elections in 1948. He fought for the anti-apartheid causes and led the Defiance campaign of ANC in 1952 as well as the Congress of People in 1955. During these years, Nelson Mandela along with his lawyer Oliver Tambo started a law firm that provided free counsel to loads of blacks who lacked lawyer representation. Nelson Mandela was greatly influenced by Mahatma Gandhi’s approach towards truth and non-violence. He also attended the 100th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi at a conference in New Delhi in the year 2007.

Mandela became the leader of the ANC wing in the year 1961. He became the coordinator for the sabotage campaigns against government and military targets. He also made plans for a guerrilla war in case if the sabotage failed. ANC members as well as Mandela were barred an entry from United States until July 2008. They required a special waiver from the Secretary of State in US since they were designated as terrorists due to their apartheid regime.

On June 12, 1964, Mandela was sentenced to imprisonment for life. He was imprisoned at the Robben Island, where he spent 18 years out of his total 27 years in prison. While in prison, he gained a lot of reputation as an important leader in South Africa. The prisoners were separated by race and the blacks received the fewest privileges. He was transferred to Pollsmoor Prison in March 1982. President Botha offered freedom to Nelson Mandela in February 1985 on the condition that he and his party members must give up armed struggle.

Marriage and Family

Nelson Mandela has been married three times and he has fathered a total of six children. He has 20 grand-children and an increasing number of great grand kids. All of his children were educated in the United World College. He was first married to Evelyn Ntoko Mase and their marriage lasted for 13 years, before they decided to break up in 1957. His second marriage was to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who happened to the first black worker in Johannesburg. The marriage ended due to separation in 1992. Thereafter, he remarried to Graça Machel née Simbine on his 80th birthday. Mandela still stays at Qunu with his royal nephew.

Nelson Mandela was elected as the oldest president of South Africa and he resumed work at the age of 75 in the year 1994. He refused to stand for the second term and took retirement in 1999. He was then succeeded by Thabo Mbeki.

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