On June 25, 2009 the world was shocked when it was announced the Michael Jackson, the King of Pop, had died. Jackson passed away at 50 years old, and CNN reported the cause of death was acute propofol intoxication. Propofol is an extremely power anesthetic, and Jackson’s doctor Conrad Murray said it was prescribed to Jackson to help him sleep. Murray was charged with the murder of Jackson. Jackson’s funeral was held on Sept. 3, and about 200 people attended.
Amy Winehouse, a recently deceased star and a six time Grammy award winning soul singer was known for her massive beehive hairdo and soulful voice as well as her drunken antics. Her lifeless body was discovered by her bodyguard along with three empty vodka bottles in her apartment on July 23, 2012. The cause of death was blood alcohol poisoning. Winehouse was only 27 years old when she died, and she had been battling alcoholism and drug abuse for years. Her blood alcohol level when she died was 0.4 percent, which is over four times the legal drunk driving limit in the US and Britain.
Iconic pop star Whitney Houston died on Feb. 11, 2012. Houston died by drowning in a hotel bathtub. There were traces of cocaine, marijuana, and multiple prescription medications in her system when she died. Investigators believe the drugs could have caused her to pass out while in the tub, resulting in drowning. Houston’s autopsy showed evidence of chronic cocaine usage. Her funeral was held one week after her death, and E! News reported that stars such as Aretha Franklin, Jordin Sparks, and Oprah made appearances. Houston was 48 years old when she died.
Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain died on April 5, 1994 at the age of 27. The musician was found dead in his Seattle home with a shotgun laying on his body and a suicide note in the room. Cobain was known to have been addicted to heroin and to be clinically depressed. The suicide of Cobain had hundreds of fans mourning at a public service that CNN streamed, which included footage of his widow Courtney Love speaking of the loss.
Elvis Presley, also known as “The King,” died on August 16, 1977 at 42 years old. In his final year, Presley was markedly overweight and was cancelling shows due to his health problems. In the book Elvis: What Happened? it is revealed that Presley had been abusing drugs for years. He suffered many ailments such as high blood pressure, glaucoma, liver damage, and an enlarged colon. Presley was found on his bathroom floor, and he was unable to be revived. The King’s funeral was held at Graceland, his 13.8-acre mansion that now serves as a museum.
Rap legend Tupac “2Pac” Shakur died on Sept. 13, 1996 at 25 years old. His body was tattooed with the sayings “Thug Life” and “Outlaw,” and when treated by medical professionals, four gunshot wounds were found. He died from these wounds six days after the shooting occurred. The New York native was a convicted sex offender, and his lyrics showed that he had experienced many problems with the law. Although there is a coroner’s report and a funeral was held, the rapper’s death still remains a controversy and some argue he is still alive.
THE NOTORIOUS B.I.G.
Christopher George Latore Wallace, more popularly known as The Notorious B.I.G. or Biggie, was a rap icon on the East Coast. Wallace was killed in a drive-by shooting on March 9, 1997 in Los Angeles. The LAPD reported that a man named Wardell “Poochie” Fouse was paid $13,000 to murder Wallace. Wallace’s two disk “Life After Death” was released 15 days after he was killed and landed at the top of the U.S. charts.