Strangest Ways People Died


It’s certainly a morbid subject to discuss,
but we’ve all likely talked to our friends about how we want to go out. No doubt for a lot of people dying quietly
in their sleep would seem like a good option, a kind of painless, non-messy exit perhaps
involving one last dream. Nobody wants to leave this planet slowly,
wasting away in pain, or maybe even losing their minds. And while it might be fast, it’s likely
no one would like to go out in an extremely violent way. Then there’s the ironic death, and there
are plenty of those. We might recall the man in the U.S. in the
80s who avoided the electric chair after appeal and then accidentally electrocuted himself
in his cell and died. With that in mind, welcome to this episode
of the Infographics Show, The strangest ways people have died. 13. The irony of dying while keeping fit
We’ll give you just one famous example of a victim of irony, and that is the case of
the former American jogging guru, Jim Fixx. He wrote ‘The Complete Book of Running’
in 1977 and it became a best-seller. In fact, he is said to be one of the main
people that started what was called America’s fitness revolution. Fixx had once been overweight and also a heavy
smoker, but then he started his exercise regime, sold his books, and told the American people
that running was the secret to having a long life and good health. He died of a heart attack while running when
he was just 52-years old. Ok, so that’s perhaps not so strange, and
we’ll get stranger, but we just wanted to give you an example of death by irony. 12. Death by clothing
You’ve all heard news media write stories about what it calls “Draconian” laws or
rules. This just usually means out-of-date laws,
or laws that seem way too strict or even brutal. We get this adjective from a Greek lawmaker
called Draco. In Athens in the 7th century B.C. this man
created laws that were said to be unfair, or at least unfair if you were not part of
the wealthy group of people. His harsh legal code could mean cruel punishments
for even petty crimes. Nonetheless, it’s said he was popular at
the time with the crowds, but then in those days the public did seem to enjoy watching
blood being spilled. It’s said during one appearance in the Aeginetan
theater the crowd wanted to show their adoration so they threw their hats, cloaks, shirts,
at him. But they went overboard, and it’s said Draco
suffocated under the avalanche of clothing from his admirers. We should say that this is an old story passed
down, so one might question how it actually happened. Maybe they meant to kill him, but we’ll
never know what happened that fateful day. 11. Death by proving something is safe
You may have heard about this one as it’s popped up in various TV series from time to
time. The story is of a Canadian lawyer called Garry
Hoy. On July 9, 1993, he was taking people on a
tour of the Toronto-Dominion Centre, a building of many floors and with a lot of glass windows. He wanted to demonstrate to the people just
how strong the windows were as rightly some folks were concerned about such a high glass-fronted
building. To do this he did something he’d done before
and threw himself at a glass window to show that the glass was very strong. He was right that the glass didn’t smash,
but on this occasion the window popped out of its frame and Hoy fell a long way to his
death. An engineer later told the Canadian media,
“I don’t know of any building code in the world that would allow a 160-pound (72.5
kg) man to run up against a glass and withstand it.” That must have been some shock for the bystanders. 10. Same, but different
This is another story of a lawyer trying to prove a point to people and in doing so killed
himself. The man was an American lawyer called Clement
Vallandigham and in 1871 he was representing a client that was accused of murder. The lawyer was trying to prove that the victim
wasn’t murdered but had accidently killed himself. He tried to show how this might have happened
and accidently shot himself. He died, but his client got off the murder
charge. 9. Death by beard
A tourism website in Austria tells us that people can visit the epitaph of a man called
Hans Staininger. He was a mayor of Braunau in the 16th century
and was well known for having a really long beard. We are told it was so long that if not tied
it would trail on the floor. One day the poor guy was walking down the
street and he tripped on his beard, broke his neck and died. To this day his beard is kept in the local
museum. 8. Death by banana
Slipping on a banana skin is perhaps the best-known gag joke, and of course it doesn’t happen
very often. But searching online we can find one death
certificate from 1927 that did indeed blame a banana skin for the death of a man. The 74-year old slipped and died in Tennessee. 7. Death by piano
If people do actually die from slipping on banana skins, do they also die by a piano
falling on their heads? Well, someone actually investigated this and
that writer found at least one incidence when a piano being pulled up a building had come
crashing down on a person below. The website StraightDope writes, “In 1931
a piano was being hoisted up to a second-story window when a cornice broke free from the
building, falling and killing a mover below.” But perhaps the most famous piano death out
there was that of a strip-club bouncer called Jimmy Ferrozzo. In 1983 at a club in San Francisco he and
his girlfriend had been making love on a piano that was connected to a hoist so it could
be lowered down for performances and raised when it wasn’t being used. This time the piano was down on the floor,
but during the act of passion one of the two accidently hit the switch and the piano was
pulled up. Jimmy was consequently crushed against the
ceiling, but we are told his lover survived the incident. 6. Killed by a bird
We can actually find a few instances of people being killed by birds, but this one has to
be the strangest and also involves a fair bit of karma. In 2011, a 35-year old California resident
called Jose Luis Ochoa was stabbed to death by a bird. The BBC writes that the man had been at an
illegal cockfight and had taken with him a cock that had sharp spurs on its legs, which
were more like little knives. The bird apparently turned on its owner and
he suffered what the coroner called a sharp force injury. A police spokesperson told the media, “I
have never seen this type of incident.” No kidding. 5. Killing your son, the snake
In 2013, a Japanese man called Takuya Nagaya had apparently been acting a bit weird at
his parent’s apartment in Okazaki City. He’d been slithering around like a snake. Of course, his father came to the rational
conclusion that his son had been possessed by some kind of snake demon. He then did the next rational thing and took
matters into his own hands, well, we should say head and teeth. Reports tell us the son died from injuries
sustained while the father was trying to get the snake out of him by biting and headbutting
him. You can only imagine what that scene must
have looked like. 4. A cow through the roof
The BBC reported in 2013 that a Brazilian man was killed in his bed when a cow came
crashing down through his roof. Somehow the rather large animal got onto his
asbestos roof and fell right through it. Apparently, this wasn’t the first time a
cow had fallen through a roof in this rural area. The 45-year old died from internal bleeding. 3. Death by slug
Many of us might have done some silly things just because we were dared to do it or we
wanted to win some money or just show off. This goes wrong all the time and you can find
endless video clips of Darwin Award types of stunts online. In November 2018, the world’s media reported
the death of an Australian man called Sam Ballard who had died aged 28. Eight years prior to his death the skilled
rugby player had been at a party with friends in Sydney. No doubt quite a bit of alcohol had been consumed
and during the party a slug turned up on the scene. Ballard’s friends, writes The Independent,
dared him to eat the slug. That he did, but as a result he became very
sick. He was taken to hospital and it was found
later that he had been infected by a parasite known as rat lungworm. This ended up paralyzing the young man and
was the reason he died some years later. 2. Death by cockroach
You shouldn’t eat slugs, and you also probably shouldn’t eat cockroaches. The BBC tells us that in 2012 a man from Florida
by the name of Edward Archbold had entered himself into a live cockroach eating competition. He had done well, devouring dozens of the
creatures, but it also killed him. The coroner ruled that his death was caused
by “asphyxia due to choking and aspiration of gastric contents.” In short, he had choked on cockroach body
parts. The body of Christ
We know that some Christians will take into their mouths something that symbolizes the
body of Christ, but one Canadian man took this a step further in 1987. According to the Toronto Globe and Mail a
man called Franco Brun had been taken in by police and left in the cells. It turned out that in the cell the man had
made use of a small Gideons Bible by swallowing it. He choked to death on it. News reports tell us that for this mentally
unwell man “the swallowing of the Bible to him was some form of symbolism or allegory
as though he was trying to purge himself of the devil by consuming religion.” What’s the strangest death you have heard
about? Tell us in the comments. Also, be sure to check out our other show
What If Hitler Had Won? Thanks for watching, and as always, don’t
forget to like, share and subscribe. See you next time.

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