The Death of a Legend

1 Jan

On January 1, 1953, the greatest country music singer/songwriter Hank Williams died at the age of 29. The official cause of death was heart failure but a drug-alcohol combination has long been suspected.

Williams was scheduled to perform at the Municipal Auditorium in Charleston, West Virginia. Due to an ice storm in the Nashville area, Williams had to cancel the concert and hire college student Charles Carr to drive him to his next appearance, a concert on January 1, 1953, in Canton, Ohio. In Knoxville, Tennessee, they stopped at the Andrew Johnson Hotel. Carr requested a doctor for Williams, who was feeling the combination of the chloral hydrate and alcohol he consumed on the way from Montgomery. A doctor injected Williams with two shots of vitamin B12 that contained morphine. Carr talked to Williams for the last time when they stopped at a restaurant inBristol, Virginia. Carr later kept driving until he reached a gas station on Oak Hill, West Virginia, where Williams lay unresponsive in the back seat. After determining that Williams was dead, Carr asked for help from the owner of the station who notified the police. After an autopsy, the cause of death was determined to be “insufficiency of the right ventricle of the heart.” “

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