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October 30, 2016

Top 10 Famous People Rumored to Be Alive After Death

History is full of faked deaths and re-appearances of people long thought dead, but there are also a small number of people who did most likely die, but become the center of theories that claim they live. This list looks at ten of the most well know deaths that have fueled the fires in the minds of conspiracy theorists.

1. Elvis Presley (1935-1977)

There have been thousands of sightings of the King since his death. At the funeral, Elvis’ father Vernon allegedly acknowledged that the corpse in the coffin did not look like his son. He said that Elvis was “upstairs,” adding, “We had to show the people something.” Presley was also said to have been fascinated with The Passover Plot by Hugh Schonfield, who speculated that Jesus’ resurrection was faked with a drug that temporarily made him appear dead. Presley, no stranger to prescription drugs, may have had the knowledge to pull off a similar scheme.

2. Andy Kaufman (1949-1984)

The offbeat comedian, best known for playing Latka on the TV series Taxi, died from lung cancer at age 35. Partly because he had kept his illness a secret almost until the day he died, many fans thought the death announcement had been staged as an elaborate prank. Kaufman’s frequent collaborator, fellow comedian Bob Zmuda, admitted that he and Kaufman had discussed faking his death and he seemed “obsessed with the idea.” However, in a 1999 interview Zmuda declared, “Andy Kaufman is dead. He’s not in some truck stop with Elvis.” Just in case, Kaufman’s friends held a “Welcome Home Andy” party on the 20th anniversary of his death. The guest of honor failed to appear.

3. Tupac Shakur (1971-1996)

Tupac, was a rapper who was killed in a drive-by shooting. The murder remains unsolved, inspiring many theories over who was responsible. In addition, many fans insisted that Tupac was still alive. The rumors were partly fueled by Tupac’s release of eight albums in the decade after his death. In a strange coincidence, the first of those albums included the song “Blasphemy” on which Tupac raps “Brother’s getting shot and coming back resurrected.”

4. Jim Morrison (1943-1971)

In March of 1971, Morrison, lead singer of the Doors, moved to Paris to write poetry. On Friday, July 2, Morrison left his apartment, telling his girlfriend, Pamela Courson, that he was going to see a movie. On Monday, Courson called Elektra Records representative Bill Siddons and told him to come to Paris. When he arrived, Siddons found Courson, a sealed coffin and a death certificate saying that Morrison had died from a heart attack. Exactly what had happened that weekend remained a mystery. Despite the claim on the death certificate, rumors suggested that an overdose of drugs or alcohol had killed Morrison. Unconfirmed reports that the singer had been spotted boarding a plane that weekend fueled speculation that he was still alive. Even Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek said in a 1973 interview, “I don’t know to this day how the man died and in fact I don’t even know if he’s dead. Nobody ever saw Jim Morrison’s body … it was a sealed coffin. So who knows, who knows how Jim died.”

5. Amelia Earhart (1897-1937)

Ever since her plane went missing over the Pacific Ocean in 1937, countless conspiracy theorists—and eternally optimistic people—have contended that Amelia Earhart did not perish in a plane crash. The claims range from the plausible (Earhart and her navigator landed on Gardner Island and died there) to the ridiculous (Earhart was captured by the Japanese and made to serve as Tokyo Rose).

Among the more famous Earhart hypotheses, put forth in a book called Amelia Earhart Lives, was that the 39-year-old aviator survived, was secretly repatriated, and assumed the identity of Irene Bolam of New Jersey. Shortly after the book was published, however, Bolam sued the publisher, claiming his allegations were false. But the Earhart mystery may soon be solved: In March 2012, Hillary Clinton announced that the State Department will begin a search for Earhart on the 75th anniversary of her disappearance.

6. Michael Jackson (1958-2009)

The King of Pop had much in common with his late father-in-law, The King of Rock and Roll. Like Elvis, Jackson was addicted to drugs, died young (at 50), and has been sighted since his funeral. In August 2009, TMZ even posted footage of what one man claimed was Jackson exiting the coroner’s van. But even if Jackson should come back from the dead, at least we know he dances well as a zombie.

7. Kurt Cobain (1967-1994)

Every decade gets a rock god who won’t die. In the 1990s, it was Kurt Cobain. While the Nirvana lead singer shot himself to death in April 1994 at 27, no autopsy was ever performed and the only photograph of his corpse never revealed his face. Add the fact that Cobain sang, “And I swear that I don’t have a gun. No I don’t have a gun” in “Come as You Are” and you have a conspiracy theory. Some fans contend that the singer faked his death to get away from the music business—and perhaps Courtney Love.

8. Adolf Hitler (1889-1945)

Hitler and his bride of one day, Eva Braun, committed suicide in the bunker under the Reich Chancellery on April 30, 1945. The next day, German radio announced that the fuehrer had died leading his troops in battle. The Soviet news service Tass picked up the report but added that “by spreading the news of Hitler’s death, the German Fascists apparently wish to give Hitler the means of leaving the stage and going underground.” During the Potsdam Conference in July, Joseph Stalin insisted that Hitler had escaped to either Spain or Argentina. In fact, by this time the Russians possessed the remains of Hitler and Braun, having recovered them from the bomb crater they had been buried in. When Soviet autopsy reports on the pair were released in 1968, they showed that the bodies had been positively identified as Hitler and Braun from dental records. Despite this evidence, alleged sightings of Hitler continued.

9. Grand Duchess Anastasia (1901-1918)

The youngest daughter of Nicholas II, the last tsar of Russia, was shot with the rest of the royal family by a Communist firing squad. Over the years, several women declared themselves to be Anastasia. The most famous was Anna Anderson, who began making her claims after being rescued from a Berlin canal in 1920. She later lost a lawsuit in which she sought to be recognized as a Romanov heir, married Jack Manahan and settled in Virginia, where she died in 1984. A decade after her death, DNA testing established that Anna Anderson Manahan was not related to the Romanovs but instead came from a Polish family, the Schanzowskis, as her detractors had long claimed.

10. Jesse James (1847-1882)

In 1948, a 100-year-old Oklahoma man named J. Frank Dalton announced that he was Jesse James, who officially had been killed by Robert Ford 66 years earlier. Dalton convinced writer Robert Ruark and Rudy Turilli, an acknowledged expert on James, of his claims. The man allegedly killed in James’ stead was another outlaw, Charlie Bigelow. Reportedly, when James’ mother was first shown the body of the man Ford had shot, she blurted out, ‘No, gentlemen, that is not my son.’ However, in 1995, the body buried in Jesse James’ grave was exhumed for DNA testing. The results confirmed that it was the famed outlaw.

(via Listverse and The Daily Beast)


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