37 Violent Celebrity Deaths

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

It’s shocking and oftentimes life-changing when a family member or close friend dies violently. For a celebrity, dying a violent death can be the awful price to pay for fame.

To assemble a list of famous people who died violently, 24/7 Tempo reviewed information from Biography, Newsweek, Encyclopedia Britannica, and other media sources. Politicians, royalty, and celebrities whose bodies were never found were excluded, as were people who became famous for the way they were killed rather than for their pre-death accomplishments. 

Many of the celebrities on this list were victims of gun violence. Others were beaten, stabbed. or strangled to death. Still other famous individuals were killed in plane crashes or car accidents. 

Among the many disturbing aspects of these celebrity tragedies is that so many died so young. The youngest on the list was 10-year-old actress Judith Barsi, who was murdered by her abusive father. Other famous people who died before they were 30 years old include singers Aaliyah and Selena and actress Dorothy Stratten. (These are 30 famous people died on their birthdays.)  

Singer Christina Grimmie, musician John Lennon, and actress Rebecca Schaeffer were shot by obsessive fans. Silent-movie star Ramon Novarro, “Boyz N Hood” actor Lloyd Avery II, and French actress Marie Trintignant were beaten to death. Actresses Dominique Dunn and Karyn Kupcinet died by strangulation at the start of their respective careers. Actors Sharon Tate, Sal Mineo, and David Huffman were stabbed to death. (Here is a list of 30 famous musicians who were murdered.)

Celebrities who met their fates in transit included humorist Will Rogers, actress Carole Lombard, and singer Buddy Holly who died in plane crashes. Car accidents claimed the lives of actors James Dean and Jayne Mansfield.

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