Tragic Celebrity Car Accidents

Actor Paul Walker is another celebrity gone too soon.  The news that he died as a passenger in a Porsche when it crashed on his way back from a charity event shocked a lot of people. It was bitter irony that he starred in the high-speed action Fast and Furious flicks. I also remember him in the enjoyable thriller Joy Ride. He will be missed, and 40 years old is far too young to leave this mortal coil.  May he and the driver Roger Rodas rest in peace.

Many celebrities have met their ill-timed ends in vehicular accidents.  Here are some:

Steve Allen - The original host of The Tonight Show was driving to his son's home in Encino, California, when another car backed out of a driveway and struck his Cadillac. He didn't think he was hurt, but later died of serious internal injuries.

Cliff Burton - The bass guitarist of Metallica died during a tour in Sweden when the bus he was in skidded off the road.

Albert Camus - The Nobel Prize-winning writer was the passenger in a car driven by his publisher when it crashed. He was originally planning to travel by train, but accepted the ride offer from his friend at the last minute.

Eddie Cochran - The rock star died at the age of 21 in 1960 when the taxi he was in blew a tire and crashed.

Pete Conrad - The third man to walk on the Moon died after crashing his motorcycle.

James Dean - One of the most infamous examples, Jimmy Dean died at the peak of his fame at the age of 24, crashing his Porsche Speedster.

Princess Diana - The Princess of Wales was killed when her driver tried to outrun the tabloid paparazzi that were chasing her.

Ryan Dunn - One of the stars of Jackass hit a tree while driving while intoxicated.

Grace Kelly - The former actress who became Princess of Monaco was killed when she suffered a stroke while driving.

Sam Kinison - The comedian was killed when his vehicle was hit by a pick-up truck driven by a 17-year-old drunk driver.

Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes - Best known as one of the performers in the music group TLC, she died when she crashed her vehicle in Honduras.

Linda Lovelace - The star of the mainstream porn hit Deep Throat survived a car crash in 1970 but then was killed after another crash in 2002.

Jayne Mansfield - At the young age of 34, the actress died when her car hit a tractor-trailer.

Billy Martin - The baseball legend was killed in a car accident during an ice storm. He had been drinking earlier.

F.W. Murnau - The director of Nosferatu died when the driver of his Rolls Royce hit an electric pole.

Alan J. Pakula - The man who produced To Kill a Mockingbird and directed All the President's Men, among other esteemed credits, died in a freak accident when the driver in front of him hit a pipe which flew through his windshield and struck him in the head.

George S. Patton - The general survived World War I and World War II, but died after injuring his head in a car collision.

Jackson Pollack - The artist was killed after crashing while driving under the influence of alcohol.

Steve Prefontaine - The Olympic runner died at the age of 24, another victim of driving while intoxicated.

Sylvester "Junkyard Dog" Ritter - The professional wrestler fell asleep at the wheel of his car and crashed after coming home from his daughter's high school graduation.

I've left out many. They were all taken before their time.