BySam Plank, writer at
"You have to be what you are. Whatever you are, you gotta be it." -Johnny Cash. Tweet a tweeter at my twitty twitter, @tw1tterintw1t
Sam Plank

Robin William's tragic and untimely demise was a harsh reminder to us all that no matter how famous a person might be, you never know how truly miserable they might be under that smile. It reminded us that while money probably can't buy happiness, it most certainly can't but protection from dying from extremely freaky circumstances. The folks in this list learned that the hard way!

Jimi Hendrix

Excuse me while I kiss the sky.
Excuse me while I kiss the sky.

One of the best guitar players ever to grace the music scene, he drank too much and took too many drugs one night and died choking on his own vomit.

John Bonham

The Led Zeppelin drummer started off a fun day filled with drinking with 16 shots of vodka. Another victim of his own vomit.

Harry Houdini

too bad his appendix didn't magically disappear
too bad his appendix didn't magically disappear

Harry was is will probably forever be the world's most famous magician. He was also a little less well known for bragging that he could withstand punches to the gut, but he had to have warning to prepare. In 1926, two college kids came into his dressing room and hit him several times, very hard. He didn't have time to prepare, and ended up dying from a ruptured appendix.

Tennessee Williams

The writer behind "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" choked to death on the cap from his pill bottle.

David Carradine

well, kung fu#%
well, kung fu#%

He was found in a Bangkok Hotel with cords wrapped around his neck and genitals. Yup.

Vic Morrow

While filming a scene for “Twilight Zone: The Movie,” his head was chopped off by a low-flying helicopter.

Most of the cast of Rebel Without a Cause dies young

Rebels with a Curse
Rebels with a Curse

James Dean
Died in an auto crash, not too long after getting a speeding ticket.
Natalie Wood
"Accidentally" drowned, even though she was known to be terrified of drowning.
Sal Mineo
Knifed to death behind his L.A. apartment.
Nick Adams
Paraldehyde and promazine overdose in his house. Paraldehyde was a liquid sedative often given to alcoholics at the time. Lots of speculation on the cause of death, however.

Brad Renfro

i'll always remember him from The Cure
i'll always remember him from The Cure

While dying from a heroine/morphine overdose in his apartment doesn't quite fit the bill of this list, what one celebrity did in honor of this once talented actor's memory stood out, so I included it. In 2012, James Franco had"Brad" tattooed on his right shoulder in memory of Renfro. Franco also had a limited edition series of switchblades made bearing the words "Renfro" and "Forever."

Lupe Valez

This actress (who starred in over 50 movies from 1927-1944, and was briefly married to the dude who played Tarzan) accidentally drowned face first in the shitter after becoming nauseous from a failed suicide attempt.

Elvis Presley

After ingesting over 14 drugs, 10 of them reportedly were taken in massive quantity, the King fittingly died on the throne! Or, he just went home...whatevs.

Brandon Lee

Killed on the set of The Crow when a stunt gun used to fire blanks unknowingly had a bullet lodged in the barrel. The actor was shot in the head and died instantly.


Murdered by Yolanda Saldivar, the president of her fan club.

Sharon Tate

cuz i'd like to end this list with 2...cigarettes!
cuz i'd like to end this list with 2...cigarettes!

Her and 4 other people were stabbed to death by members of Charles Manson’s family at her house. This occurred on August 8, 1969 and the actress was 2 weeks away from giving birth.

Honorable Mention!

Marion Morrison, aka John Wayne, ALMOST dies on set

maybe he was smoking on set
maybe he was smoking on set

As an extra in 1928's Noah's Ark, he got a wet surprise when 15,000 gallons of water were dumped too quickly on him and other extras in a studio tank. Three men drowned, one broke his leg, and dozens, include J-Dub, were injured.


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