The Darwin Awards for 2003This was sent to me
The candidates have finally been released!
For those not familiar with the Darwin Award, it's an annual honor given to the person who provided the human race the greatest service by removing himself from the gene pool.
Yes, they were all men.
As always, competition has been keen again this year.
Drum roll, please
In September in Detroit, a 41-year-old man got stuck and drowned in two feet of water after squeezing head first through an 8-inch-wide sewer grate to retrieve his car keys.
In October, a 49-year-old San Francisco stockbroker, who "totally zoned when he ran," accidentally jogged off a 100-foot-high cliff on his daily jog.
Buxton, NC: A man died on a beach when an 8-foot deep hole he had dug in the sand caved in as he sat inside it.
Beach-goers said Daniel Jones, 21, dug the hole for fun, or protection from the wind, and had been sitting in a beach chair at the bottom Thursday afternoon when it collapsed, burying him beneath 5 feet of sand.
People on the beach, on the Outer Banks, used their hands and shovels, trying to claw their way to Jones, a resident of Woodbridge, VA, but could not reach him. It took rescue workers, using heavy equipment, almost an hour to free him while about 200 people looked on.
Jones was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
In February, Santiago Alvarado, 24, was killed in Lompoc, CA, as he fell face-first through the ceiling of a bicycle shop he was burglarizing.
Death was caused when the long flashlight he had placed in his mouth (to keep his hands free) rammed into the base of his skull as he hit the floor.
According to police in Dahlonega, GA,. ROTC cadet Nick Berrena, 20, was stabbed to death in January by fellow cadet Jeffrey Hoffman, 23, who was trying to prove that a knife could not penetrate the flak vest Barrena was wearing. (my favorite)
Sylvester Briddell, Jr., 26, was killed in February in Selbyville, DE, as he won a bet with friends who said he would not put a revolver loaded with four bullets into his mouth and pull the trigger.
In February, according to police in Windsor, Ontario, Daniel Kolta, 27 and Randy Taylor, 33, died in a head-on collision, thus earning a tie in the game of chicken they were playing with their snowmobiles.
HONORABLE MENTIONS -
In Guthrie, Okla, in October, Jason Heck tried to kill a millipede with a shot from his 22 caliber rifle, but the bullet ricocheted off a rock near the hole and hit pal Antonio Martinez in the head, fracturing his skull.
In Elyria Ohio, in October, Martyn Eskins, attempting to clean out some cobwebs in his basement, declined to use a broom in favor of a propane torch and caused a fire that burned the first and second floors of his house.
Paul Stiller, 47, was hospitalized in Andover Township, NJ, and his wife Bonnie was also injured when a quarter-stick of dynamite blew up in their car.
While driving around at 2 AM, the bored couple lit the dynamite and tried to toss it out the window to see what would happen, but apparently failed to notice that the window was closed.
TACOMA, WA - Kerry Bingham had been drinking with several friends when one of them said they knew a person who had bungee-jumped from the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in the middle of traffic. The conversation grew more heated and at least 10 men trooped along the walkway of the bridge at 4:30 am.
Upon arrival at the midpoint of the bridge they discovered that no one had brought a bungee rope. Bingham, who had continued drinking, volunteered and pointed out that a coil of lineman's cable lay nearby. One end of the cable was secured around Bingham's leg and the other end was tied to the bridge.
His fall lasted 40 feet before the cable tightened and tore his foot off at the ankle. He miraculously survived his fall into the icy river water and was rescued by two nearby fishermen. "All I can say," said Bingham, "is that God was watching out for me on that night. There's just no other explanation for it."
Bingham's foot was never found.