5 People Killed by Their Obsessions

  • June 09, 2010
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Timothy Treadwell – Bear Enthusiasm

Sometimes life simply deals you a lousy hand. Such was the case for Tim Treadwell, and not just because of his laughable name. He became addicted to drugs after failing to win the role of Woody the bartender on the sitcom Cheers, a fate that is indeed worth a crippling addiction. After surviving a heroin overdose, Tim realized that he was wasting his life and needed to do something meaningful with what time he had on Earth, which, in his mind, meant he needed to live among the bears.

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He traveled to Alaska to observe wild bears, which he claimed help him overcome his drug addiction. He continued his quest to protect his bears/drug counselors by spending thirteen seasons in the Katmai National Park. The bears were totally cool with that, except that they weren’t.

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Park rangers made a series of recommendations to Treadwell that would make his stays much easier and less likely to end in heartbreak, all of which he ignored. These tips ranged from the complex: building an electric fence around his campsite; to the overwhelmingly basic: properly disposing of his food. Despite his flagrant disregard for safety, things were going pretty well for Tim until October of 2003 when bears, unhindered by the lack of an electric fence and possibly attracted to his mounds of scraps, mauled and ate Tim and his girlfriend in their campsite. Since then many documentaries have been made about his life, successful nature writing and death, though the murderous bear in question is probably still at large.


Jeff Dailey – Video Gaming

Gamer Jeff Dailey had but one dream: to play video games until the day he died. Sadly, that day much earlier then he or anyone else expected. At age nineteen Jeff died of a heart attack after achieving a high score in the arcade game Berzerk, becoming the first person to be killed by a video game in history as well as being labeled a winner when he had clearly lost.

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Jeff wouldn’t be the only victim of Berzerk’s bloodlust. In 1982, a year after Dailey’s death, Peter Burkowski landed two high scores in fifteen minutes. His reward for such a feat was, you guessed it, a fatal heart attack, bringing Berzerk’s finally score to 2-0 against players.

Though death-by-video game addiction is becoming a disturbingly common news story, these two deaths are truly odd in that both individuals were in fine health at the time of their deaths (you know, if you ignore the whole heart attack thing, that is). Clearly what did them in was Berzerk’s dark depiction of a dystopian robot future.

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Written by NN – Copyrighted © www.weirdworm.com Image Sources

Image sources:

  • - Milo of Croton – Feats of Strength: http://gymnasticscoaching.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/man-carring-calf.jpg
  • - Sigurd the Mighty – General Viking-ing: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/28497/28497-h/images/p278.jpg
  • - The Collyer Brothers – Junk Hoarding: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e4/Collyer_03.jpg
  • - Timothy Treadwell – Bear Enthusiasm: http://s.bebo.com/app-image/7924650829/5411656627/PROFILE/i.quizzaz.com/img/q/u/08/03/20/pooh-rumbly-2006.jpg http://247wallst.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/angrybear.jpg
  • - Jeff Dailey – Video Gaming: http://www.casketinfo.com/casketinfo/caskets_images/casket.jpg http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/berzerkfrenzy/Berzerk%20screenshot%20compare%20Atari%205200-1.png