They are zealous, bold and have a pechancy for unearthing the most insidious information within their spheres of influence. While many scientists have gone on to invent new discoveries that have changed the world for good, some of the brilliant minds have had their lives cut short by suspect occurrences. Here are 10 promising scientists who suffered untimely deaths.
1. Shane Todd (June 2012)
Shane was an American scientist contracted by Institute for Micro Electronics in Singapore. While he was initially contracted to research on semiconductor amplifying devices, investigations established that he was increasingly being pressurised to work on projects that could compromise the security of his mother country. He opted to resign but was found hanging in a bathroom in his hotel on the last day of work at IMES. While investigators classified the death as suicide, there were strong pointers that it was all a homicide.
2. Dr Massoud Ali Mohammadi (January 2010)
Iran’s Nuclear projects has claimed many lives in the recent past. According to reports, over seven high profile nuclear scientists have died in unclear circumstances in the last five years. One such scientist was Dr. Ali Mohammadi who died when a when a booby-trapped automobile exploded near his car. His death brought to the fore a complex ‘Triangle of Wickedness’ that was characterised by accusations and counter accusations between foreign forces and local political regimes.
3. Dr. Richard Holmes (April 2015)
Dr. Holmes was only 48 years of age when he passed on. He was a promising weapons expert who especially focused on producing protective suits for troops. Holmes worked with renowned scientists such as Dr David Kelly who was found dead in a field some four miles from his work station. Dr. Holmes also suffered a similar and mysteriously death nine years after the death of Dr. Kelly. It is believed that Dr. Richard Holmes was eliminated owing to his knowledge of RAF chemicals and biological protection systems.
4. Dr. Hassan Tehrani Moghaddam (November 2011)
Hassan Tehrani was a senior army officer in the Iranian military. He was a trained engineer and founded Iran’s deterrent power and the country’s long-range missile program. He was considered a great threat to Israel’s safety and sovereignty and it was easy to link his death on 12 November 2011 to foreign influence. The man, largely regarded as the father of Iran’s missile program, died in an explosion at Bid Kaneh army depot.
5. Dr. Don Craig Wiley (November 2001)
Was Don Wiley’s death an accident, a murder, or a suicide? That’s the big question that even authorities couldn’t give a satisfactory answer to. Dr. Don C Wiley was a world-acclaimed researcher specialising in infectious diseases at Howard Hughes Medical Institute. On 16th November, Dr. Wiley left friends at Peabody Hotel at around 10.30 PM and went for a ride in a rental car. Basing on investigations, Wiley left the car at a bridge and disappeared never to be found alive. His body was later found in Mississippi River. There are many theories fronted for the disappearance including suicide, robbery and even murder.
6. GEC-Marconi Scientists (Between 1982 and 1990)
While there have been numerous strange and often horrendous deaths the world over, the deaths GEC Marconi scientists left many, including authorities, baffled. The scientists were a group of highly trained military and Computer science experts who worked with highly-classified programs to create Strategic Defense Initiative. Owing to the nature of their work, they were always in danger of elimination by opposing forces. And the eliminations started in 1982 with the death of Professor Keith Bowden in a suspect car accident. This was followed by death of draughtsman Roger Hill who was said to have shot himself with a shot gun. By the end of it all, more than 10 GEC-Marconi scientists died in unclear and suspect circumstances.
7. Dr. Robert Kennicott (May 1866)
Robert was a brilliant, cheerful herpetologist working for the Smithsonian Institution. He was a lead advocate of protecting native prairie animals in the expansive Chicago, Washington and surrounding areas. His advocacy brought friction with farmers who were determined to eliminate the destructive animals. While on an expedition in the Yukon River, Robert suffered a cardiac arrest and passed on. His death became a subject of study and his body became a human anatomy at the Smithsonian institute.
8. Dr. Frank Rudolph Olson (November 1953)
Frank was a bacteriologist working for Central Intelligence Agency at Camp Detrick, Maryland. Olson was privy to top secret bio-weapons program developed by US army and this may have occasioned his death. Prior to his tragic fall from his New York hotel room, Olson was dosed with an LSD, a drug that alters an individual’s awareness and perception of their surroundings. His death remains shrouded in mystery more than seventy years later.
9. Alistair Beckham ( August 1988)
Alistair was a British aerospace engineer working for Strategic Defence Initiative, an American self-defence initiate. According to investigations, Alistair electrocuted himself at his home. But with more than 20 members of his colleagues suffering violent and bizarre suicides, his suicide remains highly suspect.
10. Dr. Keith Bowden (March 1982)
Forty five years old Keith Bowden was an acknowledged computer wizard also working for Strategic Defense Initiative. His prowess in using super computers to control aircraft made him a valuable asset to the organization. He died when his car careered off a four-lane road and plunged off a bridge. He died from the resulting impact.
While death is a fact of life, many brilliant and bold minds have been killed to minimise their influence through their findings and thoughts. Those outlined here died at the prime of their lives careers. Even then, they left a lasting legacy.