Monday, November 26, 2012

Ways to Die #100 - #104

#100 Too much of a good thing – Water Intoxication

In June of 2007 Jennifer Lea Strange joined a short list of people who drank themselves to death with water when she fatally consumed an overdose of H2O during a radio contest called “Hold Your Wee for a Wii”. The young wife and mother agreed to drink as much water as possible as part of the contest in order to win a Wii game player for her family. Contestants competed to see who could go the longest without stopping to urinate. After the contest Strange collapsed and died resulting in a civil lawsuit against the radio station. Water intoxication which is also known as hyper-hydration can cause a fatal disturbance in the brain when the electrolytes in the body are thrown off their normal balance. Other famous deaths from water intoxication include artist Andy Warhol whose family claimed he was given too many fluids following gallbladder surgery in 1987.


#101 Jumping into a Volcano

In 430 BC Empedocles a Greek philosopher who is best known being the originator of the cosmogenic theory of the four classic elements threw himself into the very active Mount Etna either to convince his followers, he was a god, or because he believed himself to be immortal. He might also have thought he would be reincarnated. The volcano put a quick end to any more hypotheses on his part.


#102 Laughter isn’t always the best medicine

In 1599 when Burman king Nanda Bayin was informed by a visiting Italian merchant that Venice was without a king and therefore a free state he started to laugh. Unfortunately, for him he couldn’t stop laughing. His death was more than likely a result of brain hemorrhage brought on by the strain of his giggle fit. Thomas Urguhart a Scottish aristocrat and diplomat is said to have died in the same manner in 1660 after hearing that Charles II had been made king.


#103 What a way to go – Death by Overeating

After drinking champagne and consuming a meal of lobster, smoked herring, caviar, sauerkraut, and over a dozen servings of a favorite dessert Swedish king Adolf Frederick understandably complained he didn’t feel well. He died a few hours later. Sadly, Adolf’s favorite pastimes as ruler had been to make snuff boxes and not much else. He’s therefore remembered only as “the king who ate himself to death” in his own homeland.


#104 A great demonstration – Lawyer proves his case by killing himself

In 1871 while representing a defendant in a murder case lawyer Clement Vallandigham a United States Congressman and one time political opponent of Abraham Lincoln wanted to prove the supposed murder weapon could have accidentally been fired by the victim. Taking the gun from evidence Vallandigham tried to demonstrate to the jury how the victim might have shot himself. His mistake was in not checking to see if the gun was loaded. Just as Vallandigham had speculated the firearm discharged and just as he’d conjectured the result was a mortal wound. On an upbeat note at least the defendant was acquitted.

Thanks to: 5 of the Weirdest Ways to Die - Weird Worm

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Ways To Die: #89 - #99

89. Insane fit of laughter

Several historical figures deserve mention. The Stoic philosopher Chrysippus reportedly got his donkey drunk and then died laughing at its attempts to eat figs. Italian playwright and satirist Pietro Aretino apparently suffocated due to excessive mirth, and Scottish aristocrat Thomas Urquhart chuckled himself into oblivion upon hearing that Charles II had taken the throne.

An interesting modern-day case is that of Alex Mitchell (, an English bricklayer. On March 24, 1975, Mitchell laughed for 25 straight minutes after watching an episode of The Goodies entitled “Kung Fu Kapers.” His widow later thanked the program for providing her husband with such a delightful death experience. image source:

90. Throwing yourself at a window to show how strong the glass is(n’t)

You are on the twenty-fourth floor. You probably shouldn’t try to prove how strong that window is by charging up to it and throwing your body against it. Because then the group of colleagues observing your demonstration might become horrified witnesses of your untimely death.

Introducing Garry Hoy (, a Toronto lawyer who pulled that stunt on July 9, 1993. Apparently, Mr. Hoy had performed the same feat in the past without incident – he always just bounced right off the glass as the onlookers chuckled and glanced at each other nervously.

His final demonstration certainly made an impact, although it wasn’t the kind of impact he was hoping for. This time, when Hoy’s accelerating body struck the glass, it popped out of the frame and Hoy fell to his death. This unfortunate event was partly responsible for the closing of Holden Day Wilson, the lawyer firm he worked for.

92. Your husband’s coffin

When you’re on your way to bury your dead husband, you probably don’t think death will be striking again anytime soon. But such was life for a Brazilian woman named Marciana Silva Barcelos.

On November 10, 2008, a funeral procession was on its way to a cemetery in Alvorada. Barcelos, 67, was a passenger in the hearse carrying the body of her husband, Josi Silveira Coimbra, who had died the day before. Suddenly, a speeding car struck the back of the hearse. Dislodged by the accident, Josi’s coffin hurtled forward and smashed into the back of Marciana’s neck, killing her instantly (MSNBC Article).

So what do you do when something like that happens? Tell the gravediggers to start another hole when they finish Josi’s?

93. Elevator

They’re supposed to save you time and energy that would otherwise be devoted to actually using stairs. They aren’t supposed to kill you. But accidents happen. In fact, a 2006 Center for Construction Research and Training report indicates that about 30 people are killed in the U.S. every year by elevators and escalators, and thousands more are injured.

For example, take the sad case of Dr. Hitoshi Nikaidoh, a doctor at Christus St. Joseph Hospital in Houston, TX. As he was stepping into a hospital elevator one Saturday morning, the doors closed too early and pinned his shoulders. The safety system that prevents elevator doors from trapping passengers failed, and as the elevator ascended, Dr. Nikaidoh’s body went one way and his head went the other (Houston Press).

94. Sex

Wait, I thought sex was supposed to be fun, you say. It can kill you?

Yes. Just ask Sergey Tuganov, a 28-year-old Russian who suffered a severe case of death after betting two women he could have sex with them for 12 straight hours. He won the $4,300 bet and then promptly died. Doctors determined that his death was caused by the entire bottle of Viagra pills he ingested before attempting the feat of sexual endurance. At least the last 12 hours of his life were happy hours. (Fox News)

You could also ask Kenneth Pinyon. He died from injuries suffered while… umm… having anal sex with an Arabian stallion. Pinyon regularly engaged in bestiality and had his performances videotaped and distributed under the name “Mr. Hands.” On July 2, 2005, however, Mr. Hands made love to one last horse before succumbing to “acute peritonitis due to perforation of the colon.” Translation: Mr. Butt couldn’t take Mr. You-Know-What. (Wikipedia)

There are some other sick sex-death stories out there, too. Be careful. Having sex could be the last thing you ever do.

95. Video games

They’re supposed to be fun and entertaining, but seriously people. There’s a time to take a break from the video games. And that time is before they kill you.

In 1981, a 19-year-old gamer named Jeff Dailey became the first official video game victim. After racking up an impressive 16,660 points while playing the game “Berzerk,” Jeff toppled over and died of a heart attack.(Gamespy)

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Less than two years later, 18-year-old Peter Burkowski also died of a heart attack while playing the same game.

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August 2005 – South Korean Lee Seung Seop died of exhaustion after playing Starcraft online for 50 hours straight in an Internet café.

January 2007 – A 28-year-old woman named Jennifer Strange died of hyponatremia (water intoxication) after participating in a contest at a local radio station. In order to win a Nintendo Wii, the contestants competed to see who could drink the most water without taking a potty break. Strange ingested enough water to severely dilute the sodium levels in her bloodstream and bring about her death.

96. Floods – but not the water kind

Molasses Flood
Usually when we hear “flood” we think “water,” and usually we are right to think this. However, there are at least two famous flood incidents that had nothing at all to do with water.

The London Beer Flood, October 1814 – nine people died after a 22-foot high, 130,000-gallon vat of porter burst at the Meux & Co. Brewery. The enormous volume of beer caused other vats to rupture as well, and more than 300,000 gallons of beer smashed its way through brick walls and blasted into the slums of St. Giles, a London parish. The sound of the explosion was reportedly heard up to five miles away. (BBC Article)

You can imagine the reaction of Londoners who weren’t immediately overwhelmed by a beer tsunami. Yes, exactly what you would have done – run outside with pots, pans, and anything else that can hold beer. Drink as much as possible, save the rest. (Technically speaking, only eight of the nine casualties were because of the actual flood. The ninth guy died from alcohol poisoning a few days later!)

The Boston Molasses Disaster, January 1919 – 21 people expired when a 50-foot high storage tank full of molasses exploded and unleashed a crazy wave of sticky death through Boston’s North End. (Bizarre Tragedies) The warm weather apparently helped build pressure inside the poorly-constructed tank, eventually causing an explosion. Several city blocks were flooded, and the wave was high and strong enough to lift a freaking train off the Elevated Railway tracks.

They say it still smells like molasses there on hot summer days.

97. Your own wooden leg

This one is probably a little less common in the current day and age. Unfortunately for Sir Arthur Aston, an English soldier best known for supporting King Charles I during the English Civil War, it was the seventeenth century and he was the proud owner of a wooden leg.

In 1649, Aston was serving as governor of Drogheda, Ireland. In an attempt to help establish Ireland as a power base for the English Royalist cause, he had joined forces with the Marquis of Osmond, the Commander-in-Chief of Royalist forces in Ireland.

In September of that year, Oliver Cromwell and his troops stormed the city and proceeded to massacre most of its inhabitants. When Parliamentary soldiers captured the governor, they had two main priorities: 1) kill this guy, and 2) check for gold coins inside his wooden leg. There weren’t any coins, but Aston was literally beaten brainless with his own leg in the process of not finding any gold. (Berkshire History)

98. Exploding lakes

How about getting killed by an exploding lake? It doesn’t happen too often, but that’s exactly how Lake Nyos decided to off nearly 1,800 people in 1986. Thanks to a pool of magma 50 miles below the surface, dangerous gases had been collecting at the bottom of the crater lake. On August 21, a rare natural phenomenon known as limnic eruption unleashed a murderous bubble of carbon dioxide upon the surrounding villages.

Most lakes have water layers that mix or “turn over” frequently, allowing gases to escape slowly into the atmosphere. Limnic eruption occurs when a deep water layer becomes saturated with dissolved gases over a long period of time. These gases are then released by some sort of trigger – for example, a landslide, heavy rainfall, or an earthquake – that displaces the saturated water and allows the gases to come out of solution. All at once, the lake overturns with a huge explosion. It’s like shaking up a soda can and spraying it, except with a lot more death and destruction.

When Lake Nyos blew up, a geyser of gas and water shot more than 250 feet into the air, set off an 80-foot tsunami, and spewed out a killer cloud of carbon dioxide that asphyxiated people as far as 15 miles away.

99. Your enemy’s severed head

Sigurd the Mighty, the ninth-century Viking Earl of Orkney, died a particularly ironic death after returning from a successful battle. Having defeated his foe Máel Brigte, Sigurd strapped the Pict’s severed head to his saddle and headed home. As he was riding, however, Máel’s tooth scraped against Sigurd’s leg and caused a sore that later became infected in a fatal sort of way. (Orknewyjar)

Thanks to for the content!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Way To Die #88

SANTA FE, Texas -- A school day ended in tragedy in Santa Fe Friday when a student was killed in a freak accident while walking down the street.

The 17-year-old Santa Fe High School student was walking down the two-lane road with his girlflriend around 12 p.m. when his neck was sliced open by a street sign hanging out of a passing pickup truck.

The pickup truck was driven by a fellow student.

Witnesses said the teen never knew what hit him.

“He was walking, and it got him in the back of the head and he died instantly,” friend Paul Alexander said.

The student driving the vehicle, an 18-year-old female, stopped after the accident, but it was too late for the victim.

Police said the student driving the truck is distraught over the incident is not facing charges.

The signs in the back of the pickup were stolen a few days ago, but investigators said it’s not clear if the teen driving the truck was involved in that theft.

Thanks to for the story!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Way To Die: #87 - Suffocated By Bran

Headline in New-York Herald Tribune on 22 September 1870: Samuel Toner, residing at the corner of Van Brunt and Tremont-sts., and employed at Smith's Flour Mills in Hamilton-ave., fell into a bin of bran, yesterday, and was suffocated.

Thanks to:

Friday, May 18, 2012

Ways To Die: #77 - #86

Ok, all these strange deaths happened in the movies.. Thanks to Kevin ( for the content! If you go to his page, he also has links to YouTube videos of the death.. I had to use this because he has named a bunch of my favorite movies! You can't beat The Blues Brothers, Indiana Jones or Jurassic Park!

#77: Beheaded by a flying rabbit
Movie: Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Happened to: Sir Bors of Camelot

#78: Psychofraculated
Movie: Mystery Men
Happened to: Captain Amazing (and, later, Casanova Frankenstein)

#79: Shot through heart by chicken arrow
Movie: Hot Shots! Part Deux
Happened to: some Iraqi

#80: Eaten by a T-Rex while sitting on the toilet
Movie: Jurassic Park
Happened to: The lawyer

#81: Drowned by a carbon copy of yourself (dozens of times)
Movie: The Prestige
Happened to: Robert Angier

#82: Falling thousands of feet off a highway overpass in a Ford Pinto
Movie: Blues Brothers
Happened to: Illinois Nazis

#83: Eaten by that giant thing on Tatooine
Movie: Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
Happened to: Boba Fett, assorted extras

#84: Melting like ice cream after looking into the Ark of the Covenant
Movie: Raiders of the Lost Ark
Happened to: German Nazis

#85: Death by harp music
Movie: Kung Fu Hustle
Happened to: Coolie, Donut, and the Tailor

#86: Having an alien burst out of your chest and perform a Broadway routine
Movie: Spaceballs
Happened to: Kane

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ways To Die: #67 - #76

  1. It’s hard to believe, but sometimes plants take revenge. A 27 year old male discovered this after his friend suggested they do a little “cactus plugging” by shooting a cactus with a shotgun. This young man tried his plugging skills on a 25 foot tall Saguaro cactus. After blasting a large hole in the cactus, the cactus fell on him, crushing him to death!
  2. Sometimes you can even die strangely while walking through your own city. Allan Pinkerton, famous for creating the Pinkerton detective agency in the 1800’s, died at age 65 after biting his tongue when he slipped on the sidewalk.
  3. It’s hard to believe but there’s actually a case of someone eating himself to death. The unfortunate victim was King Adolf Frederick of Sweden. His favorite dessert was a bun filled with marzipan and milk. He was so hungry that one day he ate fourteen servings of this dessert and subsequently died on the spot.
  4. You’ve heard of video game fanatics. Well this young man have had the ultimate game addiction. A 28 year old Korean video game lover died at an internet cafe after playing Starcraft for almost 50 hours straight. At least he died doing something he enjoyed.
  5. This may be the most nauseating death of all. In the early 1980’s, a 25 year old Dutch woman arrived at the home of a classmate who had invited her to dinner for an intellectual conversation. The conversation must have turned bad because she was killed and eaten by her dinner companion.
  6. Celebrities have been known to die in strange ways also. The author, Sherwood Anderson, died after developing an abdominal infection when he swallowed a toothpick at a party.
  7. It pays to write down the combination of your safe. In 1911, the famous Jack Daniel, who founded the Tennessee whiskey company, died of blood poisoning after kicking his safe in anger because he couldn’t remember the combination to open it.
  8. Sometimes it just pays to stay at home. In 1972, Leslie Harvey, guitarist of Stone the Crows, was on stage performing for a crowd of fans. Unfortunately, he was electrocuted by his microphone and died at the scene.
  9. It pays to use the best materials when you construct your laboratory. In 1277, Pope John XXI was killed after his scientific laboratory collapsed on him.
Thanks to for info!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Ways To Die: #55 - #66 (The Manliest Ways To Die)

We're all going to die anyway, so at least do it like a man. Meet ten manliest ways to die.

  1. Steve Irwin: Impaled by a Stingray
    Is it even possible to start a manly list about anything without the Crocodile Hunter? Steve died as manly as possible on 2006, while filming a documentary entitled "Ocean's Deadliest" in Queensland's Great Barrier Reef. His heart was impaled by nothing less than a short-tail stingray barb. Of all the different ways to die, we can't think of a manliest; his legacy will impale us forever.
  2. Eleazar Maccabeus: Crushed to death by a War Elephant
    Here's a guy with balls of steel, just like his whole family. During the Maccabean revolt, where Jewish people revolted against Seleucidic and Syrian rulers, Eleazar identified a war elephant that he believed to carry the Seleucid King Antiochus V --due to the special armor the elephant wore-- so he decided to endanger his life by attacking the elephant and thrusting a spear into its belly. Yes, the dead elephant then collapsed upon Eleazar, killing him as well, but remained a hero for eternity.
  3. Empedocles: Jumped into a Volcano
    Diogenes Laërtius records the legend that pre-Socratic philosopher Empedocles died by throwing himself into an active volcano (Mount Etna in Sicily), so that people would believe his body had vanished and he had turned into an immortal god; however, the volcano threw back one of his bronze sandals, revealing the deceit. Another legend has it that he threw himself in the volcano to prove to his disciples that he was immortal; he believed he would come back as a god among man after being devoured by the fire. Ok, it didn't work, but here we are talking about him, which makes him inmortal in a way.
  4. J. G. Parry-Thomas: Died breaking a Speed Record
    In 1927, the Welsh racing driver J. G. Parry-Thomas was trying to regain his own world land speed record that had been broken just weeks earlier by Malcolm Campbell on the same beach of Pendine Sands. His car, Babs, used exposed chains to connect the engine to the drive wheels while the high engine cover required him to drive with his head tilted to one side – the right. On his final run the right-hand drive chain broke at a speed of 171 mph (270 km/h), setting a new record, but partially decapitating him as well.
  5. Thích Quang Duc: Lit himself on Fire to make a point
    Ok, we agree this wasn't the best way to protest, but he made his point. On 1963, Thích Quang Duc, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, sat down in the middle of a busy intersection in Saigon, covered himself in gasoline, and lit himself on fire, burning himself to death. He was protesting President Ngo Dinh Diem's administration for oppressing the Buddhist religion.
  6. Kenji Urada: Killed by a Robot
    After working on a broken robot at a Japanese Kawasaki plant, 37-year old Kenji Urada forgot to turn it off. Big mistake! The Robot woke up, said "hasta la vista", and pushed him into a grinding machine with its hydraulic arm. Ok, he died, that's awful, but we'll always remember him as the man who second man ever to be killed by a Robot. And by the way, the first ever, Robert Williams, went to hit himself with the robot; not manly enough for our list.
  7. Les Harvey: Killed by Rock and Roll
    Out of all music styles, only Rock and Roll is manly enough to kill you. On 1972, scottish guitarist of Stone the Crows, Les Harvey, was rocking his guitar on stage with his band at the Top Rank Bingo club in Swansea, and then, rock and roll took his life: he was electrocuted by touching an unearthed microphone with wet hands.
  8. Félix Faure: Killed by Sex
    In 1899, French president Félix Faure died of a stroke while in his office. That's the official story, but it is popularly believed that he died in the arms of his 30-year-old mistress Marguerite Steinheil, while receiving oral sex. Au revoir!
  9. Georg Richmann: Killed by a Ball Lightning
    Yeah, that's right. Richmann was a German physicist living in Russia. On 1753, created a kite flying apparatus similar to the one built by Benjamin Franklin a year earlier. He was attending a meeting of the Academy of Sciences when he heard thunder, and ran home with his engraver to capture the event for posterity. While the experiment was underway, ball lightning appeared and collided with Richmann's forehead. He died, but we'll always remember him as the man who stood manly in the way of electricity.
  10. Franz Reichelt: Fell to his death from Eiffel Tower while testing his invention
    For being man enough to test his own invention and for giving us that AWESOME video, Franz Reichelt is number ten in our list. Reichelt (alias the flying tailor) designed an overcoat to fly or float its wearer gently to the ground like the modern parachute. To demonstrate his invention he made a jump of 60 meters from the first deck of the Eiffel Tower, at that time the tallest man-made structure in the world. The parachute failed and Reichelt fell to his death. But we'll always remember him for this video.

Thanks to for the info!

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