A little over a year later, it was officially confirmed that 16-year-old Logan Williams died of an accidental drug overdose. According to Canada’s BC coroner service report, Williams died from an “unintentional illicit drug toxicity (fentanyl)”.
Drug-related deaths are not strange at all, especially in showbiz. We often find that celebrities are dealing with much more than we know, and there’s a long list of celebrities who have died from a drug overdose.
Now, here’s what might be a little bit unexpected; accidental drug overdoses. Off the top of your head, how often do you reckon people die from “unintentional drug overdoses”? More often than you’ll imagine. Drug-related deaths don’t always have to be deliberate. They often happen from wrong prescriptions, self-medication, wrong mixtures of prescribed medications, or even lethal drug-to-drug interactions.
This article lists famous people who have died from causes similar to Logan Williams’ – accidental drug overdose.
1. Michael Jackson
Born on 29 August 1958, Michael Joseph Jackson was an American singer, songwriter, and dancer. Dubbed the “King of Pop”, he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century. Over a four-decade career, his contributions to music, dance and fashion, along with his publicized personal life, made him a global figure in popular culture. Jackson influenced artists across a variety of musical styles and through visual presentation.
Jackson made his professional debut in 1964 with his elder brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon as a member of the Jackson 5. He began his solo career in 1971 while at Motown Records and became a solo star with his 1979 album Off the Wall. He is the most awarded music artist in history. In 2009, Jackson died from an overdose of propofol administered by his physician, Conrad Murray. Murray was subsequently convicted of involuntary manslaughter.
2. Mac Miller
Born Malcolm James McCormick on 19 January 1992, Mac Miller was an American rapper and record producer from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who began his career in Pittsburgh’s hip hop scene in 2007, at the age of fifteen. In 2010, he signed a record deal with independent label Rostrum Records and released his breakthrough mixtapes “K.I.D.S.” (2010) and “Best Day Ever” (2011). Miller’s debut studio album, “Blue Slide Park” (2011), became the first independently distributed debut album to top the US Billboard 200 since 1995. He was signed to Warner Bros. Records at the time of his death.
On 7 September 2018, Miller was found unresponsive in his Studio City home by his personal assistant. Miller was pronounced dead at the scene at 11:51 a.m. He was 26. On 5 November 2018, the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office determined that Miller died from an accidental drug overdose due to a “mixed drug toxicity” of fentanyl, cocaine, and alcohol. A year later, three men were arrested for selling counterfeit oxycodone pills containing fentanyl to Miller two days before his death.
3. Art Bell
Born 17 June 1945, Arthur William Bell III was an American broadcaster and author. Bell was the founder and the original host of the paranormal-themed radio program “Coast to Coast AM”, which is syndicated on hundreds of radio stations in the United States and Canada. He also created and hosted its companion show Dreamland. He announced his retirement from weekend hosting in July 2007 but occasionally served as a guest host until 2010. Additionally, Bell was the founder and original owner of Pahrump-based radio station KNYE 95.1 FM.
Art Bell died on 13 April 2018, at age 72, in his home in Pahrump, Nevada. Four months later, the coroner’s office stated that Bell died of an accidental overdose from a cocktail of prescription drugs. They determined he had four prescription medications in his system: the opioids oxycodone or Roxicet and hydrocodone or Vicodin, diazepam or Valium, and carisoprodol or Soma, a muscle relaxant. He was married five times and was survived by five children.
Born 7 June 1958, Prince Rogers Nelson was an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, actor, and director. He is known for his flamboyant, androgynous persona, eclectic work, and wide vocal range, including far-reaching falsetto and high-pitched screams. Prince pioneered the Minneapolis sound, a funk-rock subgenre that emerged in the late 1970s.
He released 39 albums during his life, with an enormous list of unreleased projects left in a vault at his home after his death. Estimates of the complete number of songs written by Prince range anywhere from 500 to well over 1,000. Prince sold over 150 million records worldwide, ranking him among the best-selling music artists of all time. In April 2016, at the age of 57, Prince died of an accidental fentanyl overdose at his home in Chanhassen, Minnesota.
5. Joan Rivers
Born 8 June 1933, Joan Alexandra Molinsky, known professionally as Joan Rivers, was an American comedian, actress, writer, producer, and television host. She was noted for her often controversial comedic persona—heavily self-deprecating and sharply acerbic, especially towards celebrities and politicians. She is considered a pioneer of women in comedy by many critics.
In 1986, with her own program, “The Late Show with Joan Rivers”, she became the first woman to host a late-night network television talk show. She did several other shows in the years that followed. In 2010, she was the subject of the documentary “Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work”. On 28 August 2014, Rivers experienced serious complications and stopped breathing while undergoing what was scheduled to be a minor throat procedure at an outpatient clinic in Yorkville, Manhattan. She died on 4 September at Mount Sinai, never having awakened from a medically induced coma. In other words, a therapeutic complication with propofol sedation.
6. Edward Fatu (Umaga)
Born Edward Smith Fatu on 28 March 1973, he was an American Samoan professional wrestler, best known for his time with World Wrestling Entertainment under the ring name Umaga. He was a member of the Anoa’i family, a renowned Samoan wrestling family. During his first stint with WWE, he was part of tag team 3-Minute Warning as Jamal along with his cousin Matt Anoa’i, billed as Rosey.
He was released from the company in June 2003. In April 2006, Fatu returned to WWE under the ring name Umaga. Fatu went undefeated for many months on the RAW brand throughout much of 2006 before suffering his first defeat in January 2007. The following month, he won the WWE Intercontinental Championship for the first time and won it for the second time in July 2007.
Also read: Kacey Musgraves “Star-Crossed” reviews.
On 4 December 2009, Fatu was found by his wife in their Houston, Texas home, unresponsive and bleeding from his nose. It was determined that he had suffered a heart attack, and he was ultimately revived. He eventually died later that day. Toxicology reports revealed that Fatu had drugs hydrocodone (painkiller), carisoprodol (Soma), and diazepam (Valium) in his system.
7. Heath Ledger
Born 4 April 1979, Heath Andrew Ledger was an Australian actor and music video director. After playing roles in several Australian television and film productions during the 1990s, Ledger moved to the United States in 1998 to further develop his film career. His work consisted of twenty films, and he also produced and directed music videos and aspired to be a film director.
Ledger died on 22 January 2008 as a result of an accidental overdose of medications. A few months before his death, Ledger had finished filming his role as the Joker in “The Dark Knight”. He received numerous posthumous awards for his work on the film, including the Oscars.
8. Anna Nicole Smith
Anna Nicole Smith was an American model, actress, and television personality. Smith first gained popularity in Playboy magazine when she won the title of 1993 Playmate of the Year. She modelled for fashion companies, including Guess, H&M, Heatherette and Lane Bryant.
Smith dropped out of high school at age 14 in 1982, married in 1985, and divorced in 1993. In 1994, her highly publicized second marriage to 89-year-old billionaire J. Howard Marshall resulted in speculation that she married him for his money, which she denied. Following Marshall’s death in 1995, Smith began a lengthy legal battle over a share of his estate. Smith died in February 2007 in a hotel room due to an accidental overdose of prescription drugs.
9. Anthony Durante
Anthony Durante was an American professional wrestler best known under the ring name “Pitbull #2”. He was one half of the tag team, The Pitbulls, with “Pitbull #1” being Gary Wolfe. The team is best known for their time in Extreme Championship Wrestling, where they were the promotion’s World Tag Team Championship once.
Durante died on 25 September 2003, along with his girlfriend, Dianna Hulsey, from a Fentanyl-induced overdose. They were found after lying in their home dead for days, with needle marks on their bodies. Their two children, a 21-month-old boy and an 8-month-old girl, were alone in the house among the bodies for 24 to 48 hours.
10. Tom Petty
Thomas Earl Petty was an American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer, and actor. He was the lead vocalist and guitarist of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, formed in 1976. He previously led the Mudcrutch band and was also a member of the late 1980s supergroup the Traveling Wilburys. Petty recorded a number of hit singles with the Heartbreakers and as a solo artist. He sold more than 80 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling music artists of all time.
Petty and the Heartbreakers were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002. He was found unconscious at his home, not breathing and in cardiac arrest on 2 October 2017. He died later that night. In 2018 it was determined that he died accidentally from mixed drug toxicity.
The list goes on and on. It is ironic how the same chemicals that can improve our health can also do harm if used wrongly. This in a way highlights the importance of being careful with medication and adhering to professional instructions. And of course, the need to avoid overdependence on drugs.
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