UPDATED: Mar 13, 2020
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Disaster strikes even the best of us sometimes. Sometimes we feel invincible behind the wheel and that we are safe from harms way when he are in that comfy little metal box of ours. What was originally supposed to be a leisurely drive, however, can quickly turn into a nightmare. Safety behind the wheel is always important, as we are reminded by the ever so tragic stories of the rich and famous below.
We grow up idolizing celebrities. They are on the big screen, on TV, in magazines, all over the internet, etc. Seeing them die hurts, even if we never personally knew them.
It’s one thing if a celebrity is taken from us at old age, like Dick Clark or Elizabeth Taylor. It’s another thing if they are taken suddenly without warning. That is what makes car accidents so hard to deal with.
The Ten Most Infamous Celebrity Automobile Accidents
These 10 celebrities below unfortunately lost their lives behind the wheel of an automobile. Like they say, only the good die young.
- Ryan Dunn – Age 34
Ryan Dunn became famous due to his wildly popular TV and Movie series, “Jackass.” Dunn died in an alcohol-related car crash when his Porsche 911 veered off the road and hit a tree in West Goshen Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania on the morning of June 20, 2011. His friend Zachary Hartwell, a production assistant on Jackass Number Two also passed away in the accident.
- Steve Prefontaine – Age 24
Steve Profontaine was a young, handsome track and filed star that was expected to win many gold medals for the United States at the Olympics. Unfortunately, he died at the young age of 24 when his MGB convertible hit a rock wall and flipped over, crushing him to death. The date was May 30, 1975.
- Jackson Pollock – Age 44
Jackson Pollock was an influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement. He was well known for his uniquely defined style of drip painting. After struggling with alcoholism for his entire adult life, Pollock, on August 11, 1956, at 10:15 pm, died in a single-car crash in his Oldsmobile convertible while driving under the influence of alcohol.
- Dale Earnhardt – Age 49
Dale Earnhardt was an American race car driver, best known for his involvement in stock car racing for NASCAR. It’s hard to find a NASCAR driver who enjoyed more success than him in the 70s, 80s, and 90s. While driving in the 2001 Daytona 500, Earnhardt died of basilar skull fracture in a last-lap crash at Daytona International Speedway on February 18, 2001
- George S. Patton – Age 60
One of the most famous and decorated of American war heroes, Patton was an officer in the United States Army best known for his leadership as a general during World War II. On December 9, 1945, Patton was severely injured in a road accident in Germany, the day before Patton was scheduled to leave Europe for a permanent trip back to the U.S. After suffering with a spinal cord injury and paralysis for the next 12 days, Patton succumbed to his injuries
- Albert Camus – Age 46
One of the most famous authors of his era, Albert Camus produced literary classics such as “The Stranger” and “The Rebel.” Camus also one the Nobel Prize for literature in 1957, making him the second youngest person to ever win the award. Unfortunately, Camus died on 4 January 1960 at the age of 46 in a car accident near Sens, in Le Grand Fossard in the small town of Villeblevin.
- Jayne Mansfield – Age 34
A Hollywood beauty and a silver screen sex symbol. Jayne Mansfield was not supposed to die this young. In the early morning hours of June 29, 1967, the 1966 Buick Electra 225 Jayne Mansfield was riding in crashed in the back of a truck near New Orleans. She was killed instantly.
- Grace Kelly – Age 52
Not only a beautiful and talented Hollywood actress, Grace Kelly was the princess of Monoco. She is best known for her works in the films “Rear Window,” “Dial M For Murder,” and “To Catch a Thief.” She died after suffering a stroke on September 14, 1982, when she lost control of her automobile and crashed. Her daughter, Princess Stéphanie, was in the car with her, and survived the accident.
- James Dean – Age 24
James Dean was a young, talented, and handsome American film actor. He is a cultural icon, best embodied in the title of his most celebrated film, ‘Rebel Without a Cause’, in which he starred as troubled Los Angeles teenager Jim Stark. He is also remembered for his roles in classic films such as ‘East of Eden’ and ‘Giant.’ At the age of 24, he died when his Porsche Spyder hit another vehicle head-on on California State Route 46. After his death, Dean was instantly propelled to iconic status.
- Princess Diana – Age 36
Princess Diana was truly the princess of the people. She cared about all people no matter who they were or where they came from. She was the first wife of Charles, Prince of Wales, whom she married on 29 July 1981. She was also well known for her fund-raising work for international charities, and an eminent celebrity of the late 20th century. On 31 August 1997, Diana was fatally injured in a car crash in the Pont de l’Alma road tunnel in Paris, which also caused the deaths of her companion, Dodi Fayed and the driver, Henri Paul, acting security manager of the Hôtel Ritz Paris. Millions of people watched her funeral.
(For a more comprehensive list of celebrities killed in auto accidents, read Wikipedia’s List Of People Who Died In Road Accidents)