Hank Williams: Age 29 | Cause Of Death: POOR MAINTENANCE
(Hiram Williams, 17 September 1923, Georgiana, Alabama d. 1 January 1953, Virginia)
His lifestyle was akin to the later spirit of rock ‘n’ roll. He drank too much, took drugs (admittedly, excessive numbers of painkillers for his back), played with guns, destroyed hotel rooms, threw money out of windows and permanently lived in conflict… An 18-year-old taxi driver, Charles Carr, was hired to drive Williams’ Cadillac. They set off with Hank having a bottle of whiskey for company. He sank into a deep sleep. A policeman who stopped the car for ignoring speed restrictions remarked, ‘That guy looks dead’. Five hours later, Carr discovered that his passenger was indeed dead. Death was officially due to ‘severe heart attack with hemorrhage’ but alcohol and pills played their part. Some commentators took Williams’ current number 1, I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive, as an indication that he knew he was going.