Singer-actress Irene Cara, the New York City wunderkind who popped through as a Fame costar in 1980 and later sang the Flashdance anthem (“Flashdance…What a Feeling”), has passed at age 63. I’m very, very sorry. Her magical five-year breakout period (’79 to ”83) happened between ages 19 and 23.

Is there anyone who doesn’t regard 63 as an unnaturally young age from which to bid farewell? The reason for Cara’s untimely passing is being kept under wraps, of course. Whenever someone passes too soon the first question that always comes to mind is “what happened?”; the cause eventually leaks out but is never announced in the immediate aftermath. It’s the new obit etiquette.