The morbid side of garages


This post is exactly what it sounds like, and it's a sad corollary to Sandy's compendium of celebrity suicide attempts. Tear-water tea was sad, but this is sadder: people who have committed suicide in their garages.

Before the prevalence of catalytic converters, there was a significant amount of carbon monoxide in car exhaust; even so, if you're going to run a car in an enclosed space, there's going to be CO (in response to which, there are patents to deactivate the ignition if CO is detected, much like the proposed BAC sensors). There's really no proper segue into this, so here's a list, albeit incomplete, of artists/celebs, RIP, who have died in their garages (or cars) this way.

  • Thelma Todd, Hollywood starlet aka "Hot Toddy," 1935
  • Morris K. Jessup, author of "The Case for the UFO," found inside his car at a nearby park; hose to exhaust
  • John Kennedy Toole, 1969
  • William Inge, 1973, found inside his car; hose to exhaust
  • Anne Sexton, 1974, found in backseat of her car wearing her mother's fur
  • Jeff Ward, NIN drummer, 1993
  • Jim Ellison, frontman for punk band Material Issue, 1996

And then there is the tale of the woman who killed herself this way, and then killed her father, too. The carbon monoxide entered the house and he died in his bedroom.