Not only are cars cool, but they're also necessary. In today's world, it's almost impossible to function without having a reliable vehicle, and not only that but most of us think that cars are fun to drive, too. More cars are on the road all the time, and some of them are driven by awful drivers.
But with all that said, they're also extremely dangerous. Sometimes, we drive too fast and cause an accident ourselves. Other times, it's other people on the road that we have to be careful of. The fact of the matter is, being in a car can be dangerous. Accidents happen all the time, and sometimes, those accidents even end in death. It isn't just us normal folks who die in car accidents, of course. Many famous people have had their lives cut short after dying in a horrific car accident. What follows is a list of celebrities who have died because of a car accident. Some are extremely famous, and their deaths shocked the world, while others, you probably never knew died this way.
Here are 20 celebrities who died in horrific car accidents.
20 Ryan Dunn
Ryan Dunn achieved fame for being part of the Jackass crew that starred in television and movies. Their thing was to do all sorts of ridiculous pranks, some of which were more than a little dangerous. I guess when one makes a living doing all sorts of dangerous stunts, one might think of himself as immortal. The thing is, though, Ryan Dunn wasn't. He died after crashing his Porsche while driving 130 miles an hour. Some of you out there might think it's cool to do that, but it really isn't; in fact, it's totally stupid.
19 Randy Savage
Randy "Macho Man" Savage is, without a doubt, one of the most famous and successful wrestlers of all time. He's thought of as one of the best wrestlers ever and won 29 championships over his career. As good a wrestler as he was, he was an even better showman. Savage died after suffering a heart attack while driving his Jeep Wrangler with his wife in Florida. He died after crashing into a tree when he was 58 years old. It was originally thought he died in the collision, but it was later theorized that he died of a heart attack.
18 Paul Walker
Of all of the people who died in a car accident, Paul Walker was probably the most surprising to most people. He was an excellent driver and was the star of the Fast and the Furious film franchise. No one would've thought that his life would be taken by the same thing that gave him fame, but it was. He died as a passenger in a single car crash. The car was estimated as going between 80 and 90 miles an hour when it was going around a curve. Unfortunately, the car didn't make it, and neither did Paul Walker. There were rumors that drifting was involved.
17 Princess Diana
Princess Diana was one of the most beloved women in history, so it obviously was an incredible shock to all when she died in a car crash in 1997. The word was that her driver was trying to outrun the paparazzi who were following behind her trying to get pictures. It's rather ironic that someone as famous as she was died in this way, as her fame was, in essence, what ended up causing her death although later reports said the real cause of death was that the driver of her car was intoxicated and driving at a high rate of speed.
16 James Dean
James Dean, best known for starring in Rebel Without a Cause, was thought of as one of the coolest actors of his time. In fact, it probably would be fair to say that he was the coolest, without a doubt. He died when he was only 24 years old after crashing his car in California. James Dean is the perfect example of someone who died at just the right time to make him a legend forever - he lived fast and died young. Dean was an experienced driver and raced cars as a hobby, but it still wasn't enough to save him from losing his life during a fatal accident.
15 Sam Kinison
Sam Kinison was a stand-up comedian who was hugely popular in the '80s, mostly because of how loud and politically incorrect he was. He died after his car was struck head-on by a pickup truck that was being driven by a 17-year-old who had been drinking alcohol. The driver ended up pleading guilty to vehicular manslaughter but only received one year of probation for causing Kinison's death. It would've been interesting to see where his career would've gone, as his popularity was continuing to grow at the time of his death.
Falco was an Austrian pop star who was best known for his hits Rock Me Amadeus and Der Kommissar. You may not have heard of him, but if you're of a certain age, it was pretty much impossible to avoid him, as he was all over the radio. He died after his vehicle collided with a bus in the Dominican Republic. It was later determined that he was under the influence of alcohol and cocaine. It turned out that he had been having trouble with both of these substances for a long time, and they eventually cost him his life.
13 Linda Lovelace
Linda Lovelace was an actress in adult films and was best known for her performance in DeepThroat, which is one of the most famous films of its type of all time. She later said that her abusive husband had threatened and coerced her into starring in the movie. She later became a born-again Christian and a strong advocate against adult films. In 2002, she was involved in a serious car accident and was placed on life support. Her family eventually decided to take her off it, and she passed away with her family by her side.
12 Grace Kelly
Grace Kelly was one of the most famous female movie stars of all time and, without a doubt, was a very beautiful woman. She eventually became the Princess of Monaco after she married a prince from that country. It was in Monaco that she died. She was driving with her daughter when she suffered a stroke and lost control of the car, causing it to go off the road and crash. She ended up being taken to the hospital, but because of a brain injury suffered in the crash, her husband decided to take her off life support. Her daughter survived.
11 Jayne Mansfield
Jayne Mansfield was one of the hottest actresses of all time. She was also a nightclub entertainer, singer, and even once Playboy Playmate. She died when she was just 34 years old. She died when a car that she was driving in crashed into the back of a tractor-trailer on the highway. There were numerous rumors out there that Mansfield was decapitated in the crash, but that turned out to be an urban legend. Like James Dean before her, it would've been interesting to see what would've become of her career.
10 Junkyard Dog
Sylvester Ritter, also known as The Junkyard Dog, was a former college football player who became one of the most famous and successful wrestlers of his generation. He was a charismatic and popular performer, who was still wrestling at the time of his death when he was 45 years old. He died in a single car accident while returning from his daughter's high school graduation ceremony. This was a sad way for him to go, as he was beloved by many. It was thought that his death was caused by him falling asleep while driving.
9 Drazen Petrovic
Drazen Petrovic was a basketball player from Croatia who came to the United States to play in the NBA after achieving tons of success in Europe. He was thought of as one of the best shooting guards around, and he was only getting better when he tragically died. He died in an auto crash in Germany when a car that he was a passenger in was hit by a semi-truck. Petrovic was asleep in the car when it crashed, and it was said he wasn't wearing a seatbelt. He was only 28 years old and in the prime of his career when he died.
8 Lisa Lopes
Lisa Lopes was known for a few things when she was alive. For one thing, she was "Left Eye" in the ridiculously popular girl band TLC, whose biggest hit was probably the song Waterfalls. Unfortunately, she was also kind of a mess and was arrested for burning down the mansion of her boyfriend, football player Andre Rison. She died when she was driving in Honduras. She swerved to avoid hitting a truck and then overcorrected, which caused her car to flip over a bunch of times. She died instantly while other people in the car survived.
7 Cliff Burton
Cliff Burton was a bass player for the band Metallica, which pretty much everyone knows is one of the most successful metal bands of all time. He died in a bus accident when the band was touring Europe in support of Master of Puppets. The bus skidded off the road, and Burton was thrown through the window, after which the bus fell on top of him. Yes, that does sound like a totally awful way to die. There were some who thought the bus driver may have been drunk, but he was found to not be at fault for the accident.
6 Duane Allman
Duane Allman was one of the founders of the Allman Brothers Band, which is one of the most famous and influential rock bands of all time. He was ranked second only to Jimi Hendrix in a list put together by Rolling Stone naming the best rock guitarists of all time. He was only 24 years old when he died. He was riding his motorcycle at a high rate of speed when he tried to swerve to avoid hitting a truck. He didn't make it and ended up being taken to the hospital still alive, but he died soon afterward.
5 Adrian Adonis
Adrian Adonis was a very successful wrestler in the '70s and '80s. He was best known for his flamboyant personality and for being the long-term tag-team partner of Jesse Ventura. He was in a minivan with a bunch of other wrestlers when the driver of the van swerved to avoid hitting a moose and wound up driving off a bridge and into a creek below. Adonis died almost immediately, and a few other wrestlers in the van died as well. The driver was said to have been blinded by the sun setting and didn't see the moose until it was too late.
4 Jessica Savitch
Jessica Savitch was a pioneer in the world of network news. She was one of the first women to really make a name for herself in the world of television reporting. She regularly anchored the weekend news for NBC and also hosted Frontline on PBS. One evening, she was out on a date with her boyfriend at a restaurant. When they left, he drove the wrong way off an exit, and the car ended up off the road and upside down in a canal. Savitch and her boyfriend were trapped in the car as water poured in. They both died from drowning.
3 Marc Bolan
While some might not have heard of Marc Bolan or his band T. Rex, he's thought of as one of the most influential and talented rock musicians of his time. His most popular song was Bang a Gong, but T. Rex had many other songs that were even better. Bolan was a passenger in a car that veered off the road and hit a tree. He was killed instantly. Oddly enough, Bolan never learned to drive himself, as he was afraid of a premature death, but cars were mentioned in a lot of his songs, and he owned a lot of vehicles even though he didn't drive them.
2 Harry Chapin
Harry Chapin was a very talented and popular songwriter and singer. He's best known for his song Cats in the Cradle, which continues to be played on radio stations all over the world. In 1981, he was driving when he was hit by a tractor-trailer truck. He had put on his emergency blinkers and slowed down shortly before it happened. The medical examiner said that he had died of a heart attack, but it was impossible to tell whether that had happened before or after the accident. His widow received a $12 million settlement because of the death.
1 Heather Bratton
Heather Bratton was an up-and-coming model who died in the year 2006 when she was just 19 years old. A car in which she was riding broke down in the center lane of the turnpike when it was rear-ended by another vehicle, The car that Bratton was in caught on fire, and Bratton was trapped inside. What a horrible way to go, especially for someone who was so young and had a life that was so filled with promise. Cars are cool, and they're also necessary in this world, but we should never forget how dangerous they can be.
Sources: Wikipedia; TheRichest