Death is certainly not a circumstance that anyone wants to deal with. When someone passes away, family members, friends, and other acquaintances are left behind to grieve their loss. The entertainment industry is not immune from such instances and there are many celebrities who we have lost over the years. In some instances, there were shocking celebrity deaths that left people scratching their heads.
In 2016, we lost a list of celebrities including Muhammad Ali, Prince, David Bowie and many others. Already, in 2017, we lost actress Mary Tyler Moore who was “hospitalized with pneumonia due to complications from diabetes.”
While many celebrities die of natural causes, there are celebrity deaths due to homicide and in other cases, suicide. The lives of celebrities may seem to be easy street, but that is not always what’s going on behind closed doors. In their private lives, celebrities must contend with numerous issues.
One confirmed suicide is Robin Williams, who died in 2014. Williams ended himself at his California home after battling depression for years. His assistant discovered his body hanging from a closet door frame. Not long before his death, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Sadly, there are many personal reasons that can cause a person to want to end their lives. Then sometimes, when celebrity deaths occur, the public wonders if circumstances were truly accidental. Read this list of 15 unsolved celeb deaths that may have been suicide.
15 Corey Haim
Actor Corey Haim was known for his roles on Lost Boys and License to Drive. His career came to a sudden stop when he died at the age of 39. His mother contacted authorities saying, “Oh my God. I think my son is dead.” It was determined that the cause of death was from a combination of prescription drugs and pneumonia. Prior to Haim’s death, he was financially struggling and was battling drug addiction. Throughout his career, he worked with Corey Feldman multiple times. Eventually, they had their own reality TV show that aired on A&E titled The Two Coreys. However, the show ended after just one year and Feldman told Haim that he “would no longer speak to him until he got sober.”
14 Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee was a famous martial artist who was well-known for films such as Enter the Dragon and Fists of Fury. He died after taking a prescription drug, Equagesic, which is used to treat pain. An ingredient in the drug allegedly caused Lee to suffer an allergic reaction and subsequently, he went into a coma. Sadly, attempts to revive him were unsuccessful. His death happened just a month before his Hollywood film premiere, Enter the Dragon, and the tragedy remains a mystery. Some believe that his death was caused by a curse on his family. In his entertainment career, he gained celebrity status from his role on the TV series The Green Hornet. Later, Lee signed a contract for two films which led to his family being brought to the U.S. from Hong Kong.
13 Marilyn Monroe
Actress Marilyn Monroe’s films brought in over $20 million during her career. While she was in her prime, her life was ended at just the age of 36. She died in her Los Angeles home back in the summer of 1962. Her death was caused by a barbiturate overdose, but there are those who do not see it that way. There are assumptions that she was killed by the hands of someone else in connection with her alleged affair with President John F. Kennedy. It was also said that she was found with bruises on her body. Upon an autopsy, it was further found that Monroe had “enough chemicals in her system to kill 10 people.” In the 1950s, Monroe’s acting career took off when she landed a part in the film The Asphalt Jungle and in All About Eve. She also had roles in The Seven Year Itch and There’s No Business Like Show Business. In 1956, she starred in Some Like It Hot, which landed her a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Comedy.
12 Anna Nicole Smith
Playmate and reality TV star Anna Nicole Smith was one of the most well-known models in the country. She enjoyed the fame and fortune she gained until her life was met with tragedy. The joy of giving birth to her daughter was abruptly cut short when her son died from a prescription drug overdose. Just months later, Smith died in her hotel room at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The cause of death was ruled “combined drug intoxication.” In her earlier years, Smith increased her popularity after she got married to oil mogul J. Howard Marshall in 1994. She worked from job to job as a struggling single mother until she met Howard while she was working as a dancer at a strip club. She had a true rag to riches experience as her lifestyle dramatically changed. Her modeling career took off after she appeared in the famous Playboy magazine and from there, she appeared in various print campaigns such as Guess. Smith gained a lot of interest from media outlets whether it was for good reasons or bad. She said, “I love paparazzi.”
11 Bobby Fuller
Songwriter and rock singer Bobby Fuller was known for the band, The Bobby Fuller Four. The “I Fought The Law” singer’s body was discovered in a car back in the summer of 1966. He was only 23 years old. According to the L.A. County Coroner’s report, Fuller was “Found lying face down in front seat of car, -a gas can, 1/3 full, cover open-windows were all rolled up and doors shut, not locked-keys in ignition.” The investigation into Fuller’s death may not have been 100 percent accurate and most assume that he was a victim of a homicide. There were no fingerprints taken from the scene and the area was not secured. Some speculated that Fuller’s alleged killers were attempting to burn his vehicle to obliterate any evidence, but took off before they could do so. His death was determined to be a suicide.
10 David Carradine
Actor David Carradine may be most recognized for his role on the Kung Fu TV series. In 2009, Carradine was in Thailand to work on the film, Stretch. Unfortunately, those would be his last days since his body was found in a Bangkok hotel room. He was found naked and hanging from a rope that was located in the room’s closet. Initially, police believed that he died by suicide, but since a rope was “wrapped around his neck and genitals”, police began to veer toward an accident that was caused by practicing dangerous sex. His death was a mystery. Lieutenant general Worapong Chewprecha said: “It is unclear whether he committed suicide or he died of suffocation or heart failure.”
9 Thelma Todd
Throughout her career, she has appeared in a combination of 120 films and TV shows. She is most noted for her roles in Horse Feathers, Speak Easily and Marx Brothers’ Monkey Business. At just the age of 29, her body was discovered in the garage of actress Jewel Carmen, who is the ex-wife of director Roland West. She was seen wearing an evening gown that was covered with a mink wrap. It was ruled that the cause of her death was carbon monoxide poisoning. Despite that determination, there were people that speculated that her death was actually a homicide. Her acting career including working alongside prominent stars such as Charley Chase, Harry Langdon and Laurel and Hardy. She eventually opened her own café called Thelma Todd’s Sidewalk Café which was located at Pacific Palisades.
8 Heath Ledger
Ledger was well known for his role as The Joker in The Dark Knight. However, shortly after filming his major role, his life was cut short. In 2008, Ledger died at the age of 28. It was determined by the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office that the death was accidental. In a statement, they wrote, “We have concluded that the manner of his death is an accident, resulting from the abuse of prescription medications.” His father, Kim Ledger, spoke out about his death to Daily Mail Australia claiming that his death was entirely Heath’s fault. “It was totally his fault. It was no one else’s. He reached for the pills. He put them in his system. You can’t blame anyone else in that situation.” Ledger’s sister allegedly warned him about mixing pills the night before his death. Kim also stated, “His sister was on the phone with him the night before telling him not to take the prescription medications with the sleeping tablets.”
7 Misty Upham
Upham is most noted for starring in Frozen River which landed her a nomination for Best Supporting Actress—an Independent Spirit Award. In October 2014, Upham’s family reported her missing and upon a search, her body was discovered in a ravine. It was further found that her family contacted police about her suicidal tendencies the same day that she died. The Auburn Police Department did not conduct a search right away since there were previous phone calls to report Upham missing. Each time she was reported missing, she was found within just a matter of days. Members of her family and the Muckleshoot Tribe assume that this was an accidental death caused by her falling off the cliff. They also believe that if authorities would have acted quicker, her life could have been saved.
6 Michael Hutchence
Hutchence was known for creating the rock band INXS and being a member of Max Q. He was also an actor known for appearing in Frankenstein Unbound and Dogs in Space. His life tragically ended in 1997, at his Sydney hotel room. Prior to his death, he was distraught due to a custody battle regarding his daughter. He was also on a hunt for drugs, particularly cocaine, prior to his death. Police said, “He was trying to get some cocaine, but he did not get it so he was going through the bin.” Hutchence hung himself and he was found by the hotel maid. The maid initially had trouble getting inside the room because “he was behind the door.” Other argued that he died from erotic asphyxiation. The coroners determined that his death was caused by suicide. Three years later his daughter's mother died of a heroine overdose.
5 Whitney Houston
Pop diva Whitney Houston had her share of ups and downs in her career and in her personal life. From the late 90s to the early 2000s, she struggled with a troubled marriage and drug use. Everything was spiraling out of control until she decided to make a comeback and in 2012, she was involved with the film Sparkle, alongside Jordin Sparks. She did not live to enjoy her new-found accomplishments. Houston died in the bathtub of her Beverly Hills hotel room on February 11, 2012. Her body was discovered face down in a tub full of water and the bathroom was also surrounded by drug paraphernalia. Once the autopsy results were released, it was determined that Houston’s death was caused by cocaine, atherosclerotic heart disease, and accidental drowning. She was expected to make an appearance at Clive Davis’ annual pre-Grammy Awards party.
4 Bobbi Kristina Brown
Bobbi Kristina was the only child of Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown, and she died at the age of 22 in 2015. Her death was eerily similar to Houston’s as they were both found face down in a bathtub. Brown’s boyfriend discovered her face down in a bathtub at her home after a night of partying. Even though she was alive and breathing when she was transported to the hospital, she was placed in a medically induced coma once the medical team determined she had severe brain damage. Her family remained in hopes that she would survive, but unfortunately, she died after 6 months in a coma. The Fulton County Medical Examiner’s report stated that her death was caused by Lobar pneumonia, water immersion and drug intoxication. On the night her mother was pronounced dead, Brown went through “a complete breakdown.” She was taken to the hospital the same night for treatment of anxiety and stress.
3 Kurt Cobain
Cobain was the founder of the band Nirvana and was the king of the grunge music scene. Nirvana’s album Nevermind, achieved huge success and led to Cobain being named “the spokesman of a generation.” Prior to his death, he struggled with drug addiction, depression and other health issues. In April, 1994, Cobain’s body was discovered inside of his home. The incident report by The Seattle Police Department said, “Kurt Cobain was found with a shotgun across his body, had a visible head wound and there was a suicide note discovered nearby.” Despite the police department’s report, Tom Grant who is a former private investigator of Courtney Love begs to differ and he believes that “Love was involved in a conspiracy in the death of Kurt Cobain.” Grant says there could have been several motives, particularly money, and the fact Cobain was allegedly going to leave Love by the end of that year. Grant said, “I don’t believe that Courtney Love should be arrested and charged with murder. I’m just giving my opinion. I’ve been places, I’ve been in situations, I’ve heard things, I’ve experienced things that nobody else has in this case.”
2 Jim Morrison
Morrison was a singer and part of the rock group The Doors, along with Robbie Krieger, John Densmore and Ray Manzarek. In July of 1971, Morrison’s body was discovered in a bathtub of his Paris apartment he shared with his girlfriend Pamela Courson. His death was determined to be caused by heart failure. Prior to Morrison’s death, he struggled with depression and drugs. Sam Bernett, who is a club owner in Paris, published a book in 2007 revealing what allegedly happened to Morrison. In the book, Bernett claimed that Morrison “died of a heroin overdose at his nightclub and was later carried back to his apartment and placed in the bathtub.” Since no autopsy was performed, there have been various theories as to how Morrison really died.
1 Elvis Presley
He was a singer (and actor) with the nickname “King of Rock N Roll”, who landed his first number one single “Heartbreak Hotel.” In August of 1977, he was scheduled to kick off his tour in Portland, Maine. However, his body was discovered in his bathroom of his Graceland mansion just the day before. His sudden death sent shock waves throughout the world and among his die-hard fans. The initial cause of death was reported to be heart failure, but after in-depth investigation, it was found that prescription drug abuse was a possible contributor. Based on toxicology results, the amount of codeine in his system was ten times over the typical “therapeutic level.” Several people began speculating that there was a conspiracy in his death and a possible cover-up.
Sources: People, HuffingtonPost, HollywoodReporter, NYDailyNews