I sometimes get pissed off mail from people who don't like what I say.
Most are angry because, since Dead People Server does not claim to be all-inclusive, that I haven't added their favorite race car driver, wrestler or mullah. Sometimes, I just send them to the Guidelines, but, more often, I ignore them.
Sometimes, people get annoyed because I'll say what people died of. A few people are mad for saying that Aaliyah was burned to death in a plane crash or that Liberace died of AIDS. I don't do it for shock value, I do it because that's what happened.
I got a very annoyed letter from someone who felt I was a fool for saying that Heath Ledger died of a suspected drug overdose. Here's what I wrote back to this person:
I expect when the coroner's report is out that his death will be ruled a combination of too many medications and illness.
If the pneumonia had killed him outright, the autopsy would have shown this. If he'd had a previously undiagnosed heart defect, the autopsy would have shown this.
But a combination of pharmacology and illness is much tougher to make a determination on, which is why we have to wait for toxicology tests to come back before saying anything definitive.
Do you know what the phrase "suspected drug overdose" means?
A fool is a person who doesn't want to deal with the facts as they are. The fact is, as fine a person and as wonderful an actor as he may have been, too many medications most likely led to his tragically early death. And, if I'm wrong about that, I will, of course, update his record in Dead People Server.
I wrote a little more about this issue.