Just because you’re famous doesn’t make you immortal. Here are ten celebrities who have had close calls with death, looking it in the eye, and coming back to tell us about the experience. What do you think is out there waiting for us all?
10. Jane Seymor
Jane Seymor is most quoted for the movie Somewhere in Time alongside the now deceased Christopher Reeves, and also from the Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman television series. The actress near death experience arrives when she had an allergic reaction to penicillin, administered to her in the sequence of a severe case of the flu. Jane and the doctors were not expecting such a reaction. She was 36 years old when this episode in her life happened.
Later she quoted the following:
I literally left my body. I had this feeling that I could see myself on the bed, with people grouped around me. I remember them all trying to resuscitate me. I was above them, in the corner of the room looking down. I saw people putting needles in me, trying to hold me down, doing things. I remember my whole life flashing before my eyes, but I wasn’t thinking about winning Emmys or anything like that. The only thing I cared about was that I wanted to live because I did not want anyone else looking after my children. I was floating up there thinking, “No, I don’t want to die. I’m not ready to leave my kids.” And that was when I said to God, “If you’re there, God, if you really exist and I survive, I will never take your name in vain again.” Although I believe that I “died” for about thirty seconds, I can remember pleading with the doctor to bring me back. I was determined I wasn’t going to die.
9. Chevy Chase
During the filming of the movie Modern Problems, Chevy was playing an air traffic controller who developed telekinetic powers after exposure to radioactive soap suds. There was a dream sequence where Chase had to wear stage lights strapped to his arms, he was pretending to be an airplane with landing lights. When the lights were turned on Chase got electrocuted, still, he was able to scream to the staff to turn it off. The crew thought he was joking and left it on so he could fry some more.
Chase nearly died in this episode of his life; he had a near death experience and went on a period of deep depression for two years.
8. Larry Hagman
Larry Hagman, who played J.R. Ewing in the television series Dallas, was not a complete stranger to the concept of a near death experience upon the time of his liver transplant in 1995. Previous experiences with LSD led him to psychic journeys that, in his own words, were very similar to his medical near to Death experience.
His need for a liver transplant was due to the years of heavy drinking which ultimately lead to cirrhosis and cancer in the liver. During the procedure he came very close to dying.
His description of the near death experience was:
I was able to look over the edge. I got a little glimpse of what was the next step. I didn’t see a light some people see, but I had a wonderful feeling of bliss and warmth. The bottom line is love, that sounds corny, but it was just lovely, uplifting.
7. Gary Busey
This Hollywood bad boy always had a personal life full of ups and downs. Gary “Abusey” was not a rookie in close calls with death. Cancer, drug overdoses and accidents almost claimed his life, but the accident that would change his life took place in Washington Boulevard in 1988 with his custom Harley motorcycle.
Busey had just picked up his freshly repaired bike at a Culver City shop. Busey rode bareheaded, believing that helmets were for wimps. His accident happened just over 100 feet out of the shop, when he slid on a patch of gravel at 40 mph while trying to make a turn around a bus, flipped over the handlebars, and hit with his unprotected head against the curb, cracking his skull.
He fell into a coma for a month, but while on the operating table for brain surgery he had his near death experience, and describes it as:
I saw angels. I was surrounded by angels. And they don’t look like what they look like on Christmas cards. They’re big balls of light that float and carry nothing but love and warmth.
6. William Petersen
In 1986, Petersen of CSI fame starred in Manhunter, the first of Hannibal Lecter’s films, playing FBI agent Will Graham. After finishing the movie, Petersen did everything to get himself rid of Graham character, including shaving his beard, cutting and dying his hair blonde so he could see a different person in the mirror. He claims to have done it because while rehearsing for a play in Chicago because his dialogue was coming out like Will Graham from Manhunter.
It was during this play that his near death episode happened:
Years ago, doing a play in Chicago, I cut my finger in half onstage. We obviously had to stop because, well, I didn’t have a finger. By the time they got me to the ER I had lost a lot of blood and passed out. I could hear the doctors working on me, saying that they had lost my vital signs. I was on the “All That Jazz” escalator with a long tunnel and a lot of white light. Then I specifically remember a dominant male voice saying, “It’s not your time. Get off the escalator. You’ve got shit to do.” I came to, and got sewed up. Something in me changed, a sort of knowledge that somewhere on the other side, its good. For weeks, the more I talked about it, the more freaked out people got. Some of them were like, “Okay, whatever: You took too many drugs.”
5. Donald Sutherland
This movie veteran has been in film since 1951, appearing in more than 150 movies over his career to date. The well-known actor almost lost his life to Meningitis in 1979 when his body shut down and he died before being resuscitated back to life.
Sutherland described the feeling as:
Suddenly the pain, fever and acute distress seemed to evaporate. I was floating above my body, surrounded by soft blue light. I began to glide down a long tunnel, away from the bed … but suddenly I found myself back in my body. The doctors told me later that I had actually died for a time.
4. Elizabeth Taylor
She was probably one of the most revered starlets of her time and her memory continues to warm the hearts of people around the world but her life was almost cut short in the 1950’s when she died on an operating table for 5 minutes before being revived. The most interesting part of this tale is perhaps her experiences while she was “dead”.
Ms Taylor claimed that, while her body was shutting down, she met up with ex-husband Michael Todd who told her that she had something “important” to do in her life and that it was not her time to die. She claimed that she was reluctant to “go back” and that she wanted to stay with him. He, on the other hand, would not allow this and forced her to go back.
I was pronounced dead once and actually saw the light. I find it very hard to talk about, actually, because it sounds so corny. It happened in the late ’50s, and I saw Mike (Todd, Taylor’s third husband, who was killed in a plane crash in 1958). When I came to, there were about 11 people in the room. I’d been gone for about five minutes – they had given me up for dead and put my death notice on the wall. I shared this with the people that were in the room next to me. Then after that I told another group of friends, and I thought, “Wow, this sounds really screwy. I think I’d better keep quiet about this.For a long time I didn’t talk about it, and it’s still hard for me to talk about. But I have shared it with people with AIDS because if the moment occurs and you’re really sharing, it’s real. I am not afraid of death, because I have been there.
Taylor used this experience to reach out to people with AIDS around the world until her death in March, 2011.
3. Sharon Stone
We love her whether she’s the villain or the heroine but Sharon Stone was almost lost to us when she had a sudden brain hemorrhage which left her bleeding internally. Stone claims that this experience changed her life because it literally gave her a glimpse of the “light at the end of the tunnel”. Stone says that, the moment it happened, she was suddenly taken up into this bright light where she spent moments with people she loved before being drawn back to her own body.
When it hit me I felt like I’d been shot in the head. That’s the only way I can really describe it. It hit me so hard it knocked me over on the sofa. And Phil was out of town and I called him and said, “I think I had a stroke.” But in all fairness, I’m a person who’s always saying, “I think I’ve had a stroke, I think I’ve had a heart attack, I think I’ve had a brain hemorrhage … I had a real journey with this that took me to places both here and beyond that affected me so profoundly that my life will never be the same … I get to be not afraid of dying and I get to tell other people that it’s a fabulous thing and that death is a gift. And not that you should kill yourself, but that when death comes to you, as it will, that it’s a glorious and beautiful thing. This kind of giant vortex of white light was upon me and I kind of – poof! Sort of took off into this glorious, bright, bright, bright white light and I started to see and be met by some of my friends. But it was very fast – whoosh! Suddenly, I was back. I was in my body and I was in the room.
2. Elvis Presley
I entered into a dark tunnel and suddenly I was in a place filled up with love and a beautiful, bright light. The place seemed holy. My father, who had died two years earlier, was there, as were my grandparents. Everyone was happy to see me, but my father told me it was not my time and I would be going back. Just as I turned to go, I caught sight of Elvis! He was standing in this place of intense bright light. He just came over to me, took my hand and said, “Hi, Bev, do you remember me?”
This is one of many near death experiences related with Elvis Presley, not by Elvis himself but by people that claim to have seen him during their supernatural experiences. The being of light and peace that greets those who have near-death experiences usually are family members, Jesus or someone with who this person had a great deal of affinity and love. After Elvis death many people began to report having seen the spirit of Elvis in the afterlife, Elvis as the light source, as the being of light at the end of the tunnel.
1. Ozzy Osbourne
Ozzy has always given us a reason to keep our eyes glued to the stage or screen and it was no different when he was involved in a biking accident which left him dead, not once, but twice. After falling into a coma for eight days the singer regained consciousness to begin his recovery from a broken collarbone, eight broken ribs and a broken vertebra in his neck.
Ozzy claims to have seen the white light but, as he says, he didn’t get to meet any supernatural beings but it did help him to clean up his act. He says that the accident made him see that he needed to become more mature and it has certainly paid off in the long run.
I didn’t know where I was or how long I’d been there. I would drift in and out of consciousness. Other times there would be a white light shining through the darkness, but no f—king angels, no one blowing trumpets and no man in a white beard.