16. Chris Farley
Comedian Chris Farley died of an overdose of morphine and cocaine in 1997 at age 33. The Saturday Night Live star was one of the most iconic comedians of the 1990s.
A narrowing of the arteries supplying the heart muscle was a major contributing factor in his death. A similar combination of drugs, heroin and cocaine, killed Farley’s idol, comedian John Belushi, years earlier.
Farley was an immensely talented comic, but those who knew him say his downfall was his constant need for approval. He would allegedly do almost anything to make people laugh; his desire to entertain made him great, but it also took a toll on Farley.
His drinking and drug use escalated as his career took off. Farley had a highly addictive personality, and he struggled to get clean despite multiple interventions and stints in rehab. He relapsed multiple times. Farley’s tragic death at a young age was a huge loss not only to his fans, but especially to his family, friends, and colleagues who remembered him as a warm and genuine person with a larger-than-life personality.
Photo source: I. Fordnation at work by vourdoussis