10 Outrageously Dumb Darwin Award Winners

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May 09, 2018


10 Outrageously Dumb Darwin Award Winners
10 Outrageously Dumb Darwin Award Winners thumb 10 Outrageously Dumb Darwin Award Winners thumb 10 Outrageously Dumb Darwin Award Winners thumb


  • When Charles Darwin studied the process of evolution in the 1800s, he realized that animals
  • have a selective breeding process he called “natural selection.”
  • Animals who were born with a predisposition to survive longer in their environment were
  • the ones to survive and mate with one another, passing on their DNA.
  • Because of this process, the species becomes smarter, faster, stronger, and more likely
  • to thrive in their environments in the next generation.
  • Well, you may wonder – does the rule of natural selection also apply to humans?
  • It turns out that natural selection happens every single day.
  • There are people who have done things that are so incredibly stupid, they have died,
  • ensuring they will never pass on their DNA to the next generation.
  • The internet has come together to gather these stories and dub these people as the winners
  • of a “Darwin Award.”
  • In case you were wondering, it may not surprise you that male Darwin Award winners outnumber
  • women 7-to-1, and out of any country in the world, the United States has the most winners,
  • by far.
  • 10.
  • Say Cheese!
  • There is no denying that people are far too distracted by their cell phones, and texting
  • and driving has become a very real issue.
  • However, selfies have become a leading source of death in recent years.
  • There have been hundreds of selfie-related deaths since the creation of the smartphone;
  • usually people trying to pose near the edge of a cliff, on railroad tracks, or on a balcony.
  • One story of such a death is British tourist named Dean Steele.
  • He was visiting Germany and wanted to take a selfie on the Autobahn highway.
  • The Autobahn is famous for having no speed limit, so cars can drive as fast as they want.
  • Usually, during the day, there is far too much traffic on the road for people to take
  • advantage of this perk, so most of the speeding is done at night when the roads are clear.
  • This is exactly when Steele decided it would be a good idea to take a selfie in the middle
  • of the highway, and he promptly got hit by a car driving at full-speed.
  • 9.
  • Mystery Liquid
  • In 2012, a man named Gary Allen Banning was visiting a friend’s house for a party in
  • North Carolina.
  • He spotted a salsa jar with a mysterious golden liquid, and he decided to take a swig of what
  • he assumed was someone else’s drink.
  • It turns out that the jar was filled with gasoline that the friend had been using to
  • clean up grease.
  • While the friends had a good laugh, Banning spat out the gasoline, and it got all over
  • his clothes.
  • Banning needed to take the edge off of what just happened, so he pulled out his lighter,
  • and started smoking a cigarette.
  • The gasoline on his clothes and mouth ignited into flames.
  • Banning was rushed to the hospital, but eventually died from burning alive.
  • 8.
  • Window Pain
  • In 1993, an attorney named Garry Hoy was working on the 24th floor of the TD Centre in Toronto,
  • Canada for the Holden Day Wilson law firm.
  • The windows in the building were known for being unbreakable, and Hoy loved to joke around
  • by throwing himself at the glass to prove it.
  • A group of law students was visiting the firm one day on a tour, when Hoy went through his
  • routine of shoving his shoulder into the window.
  • That day, however, he must not have known his own strength, because the glass popped
  • out of the window frame.
  • He was right – it didn’t break, but he still went hurtling down 24 stories to his
  • death.
  • This story became so well-known that it was featured on the TV shows Mythbusters, and
  • 1,000 Ways to Die.
  • It was also featured in a B-movie appropriately named Darwin Awards.
  • 7.
  • Faith Healing Failure
  • In 2015, a pastor from Zimbabwe named Shamiso Kanyama claimed that he was gifted with powers
  • from God to heal people.
  • So, when five men from his town asked for his help to cure a mysterious illness that
  • was plaguing their families, he instructed them to bury him alive, because it would help
  • him absorb more power from the earth.
  • Kanyama helped the 5 men dig his own grave, and laid face-down in the dirt, without a
  • coffin.
  • He instructed the men to bury him, and dig him up after enough time had passed.
  • Obviously, when they dug him up later, he was dead.
  • Despite the fact that multiple witnesses were there to confirm the story, the 5 men who
  • buried Kanyama alive all faced charges for the pastor’s murder.
  • 6.
  • Oh, the Irony
  • It seems like common sense that helmet laws are put in place to protect people’s lives
  • while riding bicycles and motorcycles.
  • But when you tell most Americans that they need to do something, they consider it to
  • be impeding on their freedoms.
  • Over 550 motorcyclists participated in a rally in New York state in the summer of 2011 to
  • fight for their right to ride without a helmet.
  • One of the protestors, a 55-year-old man named Philip A. Contos had to slam on the breaks
  • to prevent running into a bike in front of him at the rally, and lost control of his
  • Harley Davidson motorcycle.
  • His body was thrown over the handlebars, and he hit the pavement head-first.
  • When doctors examined his body at the hospital, they confirmed that if he had been wearing
  • a helmet, he would have lived.
  • 5.
  • A Full Moon
  • A 25-year-old man named Travis Lane was very drunk and high after spending the night at
  • a house party in Otago Township, New Zealand.
  • A group of friends was standing around a campfire outside, and Lane thought it would be funny
  • to pull his pants down and moon, or give a “brown eye” to oncoming traffic.
  • Every time he saw a car coming, he would run towards the road, drop his pants, and then
  • walk back to the group at the bonfire.
  • Lane must have thrust his rear end a little bit too close to the highway during one of
  • these stunts, because he was hit by oncoming traffic.
  • He suffered a broken arm and a brain injury, and was sent to the hospital.
  • He died a month later.
  • The coroner showed no sympathy for Lane, saying, “He has paid the ultimate price for his
  • foolishness.”
  • 4.
  • When Snakes Attack
  • In one small town in Kentucky, pastors of a Pentecostal church claim that by handling
  • poisonous snakes during their sermons, they are proving that God is protecting them from
  • harm.
  • They have a strict policy that if anyone is ever bitten by a snake, they are not allowed
  • to seek medical attention, because God will take care of them.
  • In 2015, one of the pastors, John David Brock, was bitten in the arm by venomous snake, and
  • he refused to seek medical treatment.
  • Not surprisingly, Brock did not receive the antivenom, and he died.
  • He was not the only pastor to die from this same church, either.
  • Despite the obvious flaw in their beliefs, they continue to use deadly snakes during
  • church services.
  • 3.
  • Not All Fun and Games
  • A 45-year-old school teacher named James Young was at Cedar Point amusement park in Ohio.
  • He went on the Raptor Roller Coaster, which twisted and went upside down.
  • His phone and other personal belongings were in his pocket during the ride, and they fell
  • onto the concrete below the tracks.
  • When the ride was over, he did not notify the employees running the ride that he needed
  • to get his phone back.
  • Instead, he chose to jump over the fence into a restricted area in order to get it himself.
  • He jumped down to the tracks… while the roller coaster was still in operation.
  • It rushed by at full-speed, and killed him.
  • It took roughly 30 minutes for paramedics to arrive, but by then it was already too
  • late.
  • If you should ever lose anything on a ride – please – ask an employee for help.
  • 2.
  • Over the Falls
  • Niagara Falls is one of the natural wonders of the world that lies on the US-Canada border.
  • It has seen its share of daredevil stunts, and one attempt in 1995 lead to a man’s
  • death.
  • 39-year-old Robert Overtracker from California traveled all the way to the East Coast to
  • ride a jet-ski at high speed over Niagara Falls as a stunt to raise money for homelessness.
  • His plan was to activate a parachute at the last minute, and fall to safety.
  • The local police force followed along as he was going on the jet-ski, pleading for him
  • to re-think doing the stunt, because it was far too dangerous.
  • Unfortunately for him, the parachute never fully activated, and he plummeted to his death
  • in front of a crowd of people.
  • There is no footage of the incident, except for one photo taken by an Egyptian tourist
  • at the exact moment he fell off the edge.
  • 1.
  • The Ancestors Were Disappointed
  • A psychic from Thailand named Theprit Palee claimed that he was immortal, because he was
  • protected the the spirits of his ancestors.
  • He was a fan favorite for the locals, who truly believed that he had incredible powers.
  • Crowds of people would flock to him whenever he did a public performance.
  • During a public ritual, Palee stabbed himself in the chest to prove that he could not die.
  • Not surprisingly, it resulted in the 25-year-old bleeding profusely, and later dying at the
  • hospital.
  • This was all part of a rehearsed act that he had done in the past, using a flimsy sword
  • that usually broke when he stabbed his chest, but obviously, the sword he used was strong
  • enough to pierce the skin.
  • Apparently he wasn’t immortal after all.
  • Who could have seen that coming?

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Text version: http://www.toptenz.net/10-outrageously-dumb-darwin-award-winners.php

Coming up:

10. Say Cheese!
9. Mystery Liquid
8. Window Pain
7. Faith Healing Failure
6. Oh, the Irony
5. A Full Moon
4. When Snakes Attack
3. Not All Fun and Games
2. Over the Falls
1. The Ancestors Were Disappointed

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