Judy Garland, who starred as Dorothy in the 1939 Academy Award winning film Wizard of Oz, died from an overdose of barbiturates mixed with alcohol on June 22, 1969 in London, England at the age of 47. At 15 years of age, Judy was already addicted to amphetamines and barbiturates.
Phil Hartmann, a comedian famous for his role as United States President Bill Clinton on Saturday Night Live, was shot and killed on May 28, 1998 at 49 years of age by his wife Brynn who later shot and killed herself. Brynn was taking the antidepressant Zoloft at the time and was apparently agitated, jittery and out of touch with reality, which are known side effects of Zoloft.
Whitney Houston died on February 11, 2012 at the age of 48 on a cocktail of drugs, including prescription drugs. Although drowning was listed as the official cause of death, the toxicology report for the famous singer showed that Whitney had cocaine, marijuana, the anti-anxiety drug Xanax, muscle relaxant Flexeril, and allergy medication Benadryl in her system at the time of her death.
Michael Jackson, who started his career at 6 years of age as a member of the Jackson 5, died from a prescription drug overdose on June 25, 2009 when he was 50 years old after a successful 38 year solo career. As prescribed by his doctor, Michael took the anti-anxiety drugs Lorazepam, Midazolam and Diazepam, tissue numbing medication Lidocaine, the anesthetic Propofol, and the adrenaline drug Epinephrine on the day of his death.
Heath Ledger died of a prescription drug overdose on January 22, 2008 in New York City. According to toxicology results, the 28 year old actor, who received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor posthumously for his role as the Joker in the 2008 film The Dark Knight, was taking the painkillers Hydrocodone and Oxycodone, anti-anxiety drugs Valium, Xanax and Restoril, and the antihistamine Doxylamine when he died.
Marilyn Monroe, an American actress, died of a prescription drug overdose on August 5, 1962 at her home in Los Angeles, California at 36 years of age. There were several medicine bottles on her bedside table including an empty bottle of the sleeping medication Nembutal which had been recently prescribed by a psychiatrist.
Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977 in Memphis, Tennessee at the age of 42. The coroner listed the official cause of death for this American musician and actor as cardiac arrhythmia even though Elvis had the painkillers Morphine, Demerol, and Codeine, sedatives Placidyl, Ethinamate and Quaaludes, the anti-anxiety drug Valium, the antihistamine Chloropheniramine, and barbiturates in his system when he died.
Tony Scott, the British director behind such films as Top Gun and Beverly Hills Cop II, died by jumping from a bridge in San Pedro, California on August 19, 2012 at 68 years of age apparently because he thought he had cancer. According to autopsy results, Tony didn’t have cancer but he did have the antidepressant Remeron, which has a black box warning about suicidal ideation, and sleep aid Lunesta in his system at the time of his death.
Anna Nicole Smith, an American model, actress and television personality, had several prescription drugs in her system when she died of what a Florida medical examiner ruled a natural death on February 8, 2007 at 39 years of age. The drugs in her system at the time of her death included the anti-anxiety drugs Klonopin, Ativan, Serax and Valium, and the sedative Chloral Hydrate.
Robin Williams took his life by hanging himself at his home in Paradise Cay, California on August 11, 2014 at 63 years of age. According to the medical examiner, the American comedian and actor had the antidepressant Remeron, which has a black box warning about suicidal ideation, in his system at the time of his death. Robin was also prescribed the anti-psychotic Seroquel the week before he died, which also has a black box warning about suicidal ideation.