Milestones Jun. 24, 2002

DIED. BILL BLASS, 79, the urbane couturier who defined American style by marrying comfort with elegance; of throat cancer; in New Preston, Conn. Among his signatures were striped sailor T shirts in fine fabrics and cashmere sweaters atop taffeta skirts as alternatives to evening dresses. The son of a hardware-store owner from Fort Wayne, Ind., Blass watched Carole Lombard movies and sketched New York City cocktail parties as a boy; later, he dressed--and befriended--such clients from the social elite as Nancy Reagan and Pamela Harriman.

RESIGNED. S. VANCE WILKINS JR., 65, as the first G.O.P. speaker of the Virginia house; in...

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