View Full Version : 2001 THE DARWIN AWARDS

15th Oct 2001, 04:29
It's that time again! The awards this year
are classic.
These awards are given each year to bestow upon (the remains of) that individual, who through single-minded self-sacrifice, has done the most to remove undesirable elements from the human gene pool.

5th RUNNER-UP Goes to a San Anselmo, California man who died when he hit a lift tower at the Mammoth Mountain ski area while riding down the slope on a foam pad. The 22-year old David Hubal was pronounced dead at
Central Mammoth Hospital. The accident occurred about 3a.m.,the Mono County Sheriff's department said. Hubal and his friends apparently had hiked up a ski run called Stump Alley and undid some yellow foam protectors from lift towers, said Lt.Mike Donnelly of the Mammoth Lakes Police
The pads are used to protect skiers who might hit towers. The group apparently used the pads to slide down the ski slope and Hubal crashed into a tower. It has since been investigated and determined the tower he hit was the one with its pad removed.

4th RUNNER-UP Goes to Robert Puelo, 32, was apparently being disorderly in a St. Louis market. When the clerk threatened to call the police, Puelo grabbed a hot dog, shoved it into his mouth and walked out without paying.Police found him unconscious in front of the store. Paramedics removed the six-inch wiener from his throat where it had choked him to death.

3rd RUNNER-UP Goes to poacher Marino Malerba of Spain, who shot a stag standing above him on an overhanging rock and was killed instantly when it fell on him.

2nd RUNNER-UP "Man loses face at party." A man at a West Virginia party (probably related to the winner last year, a man in Arkansas who used the .22 bullet to replace the fuse in his pickup truck) popped a blasting cap into his mouth and bit down, triggering an explosion that blew off his lips,teeth, and tongue. Jerry Stromyer, 24, of Kincaid, bit the blasting cap as a prank during the party late Tuesday night, said Cpl. M.D.Payne. "Another man had it in an aquarium hooked to a battery and was trying to explode it."
"It wouldn't go off and this guy said I'll show you how to set it off."
He put it into his mouth, bit down and it blew all his teeth out and his lips and tongue off, Payne said. Stromyer was listed in guarded condition Wednesday with extensive facial injuries, according to a
spokesperson at Charleston Area Medical Division.
"I just can't imagine anyone doing something like that," Payne said.

1st RUNNER-UP Doctors at Portland University Hospital said an Oregon man shot through the skull by a hunting arrow is lucky to be alive and will be released soon from the hospital. Tony Roberts, 25, lost his right eye last weekend during an initiation into a men's rafting club, Mountain Men Anonymous (probably known now as Stupid Mountain Men Anonymous) in Grant's Pass, Oregon. A friend tried to shoot a beer can off his head, but
the arrow entered Robert's right eye. Doctors said that had the arrow gone 1 millimetre to the left, a major blood vessel would have been cut and Roberts would have died instantly. Neurosurgeon Doctor Johnny Delashaw at the University Hospital in Portland said the arrow went through 8 to 10 inches of brain with the tip protruding at the rear of his skull, yet somehow managed to miss all major blood vessels. Delashaw also said that had Roberts tried to pull the arrow out on his own he surely would have killed himself.
Roberts admitted afterwards that he and his friends had been drinking that afternoon. Said Roberts, "I feel so dumb about this." No charges have been filed, but the Josephine County district attorney's office
said the initiation stunt is under investigation.

Now THIS YEAR'S WINNER. (The late) John Pernicky and his friend,(the late) Sal Hawkins, of the great state of Washington, decided to attend a local Metallica concert at the George Washington amphitheatre. Having no tickets (but having had 18 beers between them), they thought it would be easy to "hop" over the nine foot fence and sneak into the show.
They pulled their pickup truck over to the fence and the plan was for Mr. Pernicky, who was 100-pounds heavier than Mr. Hawkins) to hop the fence and then assist his friend over. Unfortunately for (the late) Mr. Pernicky, there was a 30-foot drop on the other side of the fence. Having heaved himself over, he found himself crashing through a tree. His fall was abruptly halted (and broken, along with his arm) by a large branch that snagged him by his shorts. Dangling from the tree with a broken arm,
he looked down and saw some bushes below him. Possibly figuring the bushes would break his fall, he removed his pocket knife and proceeded to cut away his shorts to free himself from the tree. Finally free, Mr. Pernicky crashed into holly bushes.
The sharp leaves scratched his ENTIRE body and now, without the protection of his shorts, a holly branch penetrated his rectum. To make matters worse, on landinghis pocket knife penetrated his thigh.
Mr. Hawkins, seeing his friend in considerable pain and agony, threw him a rope and tried to pull him to safety by tying the rope to the pickup truck and slowly driving away. However, in his drunken haste/state, he put the truck into reverse
and crashed through the fence landing on his friend and killing him.
Police arrived to find the crashed pickup with its driver thrown 100 feet from the truck and dead at the scene from massive internal injuries. Upon moving the truck, they found John under it half-naked, scratches on his body, a holly stick in his rectum, a knife in his thigh, and his shorts dangling from a tree branch 25-feet in the air.
Congratulations gentlemen, you win...

Elliot Moose
15th Oct 2001, 05:12
After a fall like that, I bet he was glad to see that truck plunging towards him! It would be a better way to go than as a result of lingering injuries from a holly branch shoved up the poop chute! :eek:

15th Oct 2001, 05:43
Deck your balls with boughs of holly tra la la la la la ....


15th Oct 2001, 21:21
Wonder if he harmonised with the group, he had to be voicing some sort of protest at lifes little joke. Quite a crescendo at the end though.

Top Loadie
18th Oct 2001, 03:13
Oh dear, what can the matter be,
John's ass was pierced by a branch from a holly tree,
Sal tried to help, with rope to his utility...

18th Oct 2001, 03:30
Sorry, but this years award will go to a bunch of brainless bastards stuck in the stone age, collectively removing themselves from the gene pool with a little help from our friends. The Talaban. Date of the award...TBA. :mad:

18th Oct 2001, 18:43
Is the Darwin Awards Committee repeating itself? I seem to remember this incident winning several years ago. Does anyone know when it actually happened?

19th Oct 2001, 20:48
I think the point is making an effort to reove oneself from the gene pool. I heard that one year it was won by a man who bought several met-balloons, tied them to a garden chair and sat in it tied to his fence with a sixpack of beers and a shot gun. The rope somehow came un-done and he shot up to some impressive altitude, where he was eventually reported by an aircraft on approach into LAX. (How did the pilot convince anyone he was serious: EG; "*** 24, descending through FL 110, I've just passed a bloke in a deck chair!?!?!!") The story goes he was rescued by a mountain rescue helecopter, although I would have thought the down wash would have blown it away. Anyone else hear this one, or is it just a pub story?

[ 19 October 2001: Message edited by: Captain James Bigglesworth ]

19th Oct 2001, 22:29
Sorry to say that is a true story. He took a pellet gun to pop the ballons but droped it. He finally landed in an open field and was arrested, but was let go when it was discovered that only the FAA had jurisdication and they could take no action because he had no pilot license.

He killed himself somehow a couple of years ago.

19th Oct 2001, 22:59
The Larry Walters balloon incident was in 1982. If you want to read the full story (with photos!), go to http://www.darwinawards.com/

From this page (near bottom-left) select search and look for balloons. There are only 3 hits, the last of which is "Lawn Chair Larry".

There are many other alternative places to read about the man. I like this one... http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Hangar/8902/ :eek:

As you will see, no helicopter involved, and he didn't get away with it! He was fined by FAA for a couple of interesting infingements of air law (you can read those for yourself!).

... Since he never married, had no children, and later committed suicide, the gene pool remains free of his type ;)

[ 19 October 2001: Message edited by: sanjosebaz ]

19th Oct 2001, 23:15
"If the F.A.A. was around when the Wright Brothers were testing their aircraft, they would never have been able to make their first flight at Kitty Hawk," said Mr. Walters

Well, he ain't a complete nutter.

tony draper
19th Oct 2001, 23:25
Hell we gotta multi millionaire airline boss here thats done that a few times, he gotta knighthood out of it.
It aint fair. ;)

22nd Oct 2001, 14:40
I don't know if this is true or just an urban myth, but he managed to remove himself from the genepool!! :confused:

At the 1994 annual awards dinner given for Forensic Science, AAFS president Dr. Don Harper Mills astounded his audience with the legal complications of a bizarre death. Here is the story:

On March 23, 1994 the medical examiner viewed the body of Ronald Opus and concluded that he died from a shotgun wound to the head. Mr. Opus had jumped from the top of a ten story building intending to commit suicide.

He left a note to that effect indicating his despondency. As he fell past the ninth floor his life was interrupted by a shotgun blast passing through a window which killed him instantly. Neither the shooter nor the deceased was aware that a safety net had been installed just below at the eighth floor level to protect some building workers and that Ronald Opus would not have been able to complete his suicide the way he had planned.

Ordinarily, Dr. Mills continued, a person who sets out to commit suicide and ultimately succeeds, even though the mechanism might not be what he intended, is still defined as committing suicide. That Mr. Opus was shot on the way to certain death, but probably would not have been successful because of the safety net, caused the medical examiner to feel that he had a homicide on his hands.

The room on the ninth floor whence the shotgun blast emanated was occupied by an elderly man and his wife. They were arguing vigorously and he was threatening her with a shotgun. The man was so upset that when he pulled the trigger he completely missed his wife and the pellets went through the window, striking Mr. Opus. When one intends to kill subject 'A' but kills subject 'B' in the attempt, one is guilty of the murder of subject 'B'.

When confronted with the murder charge the old man and his wife were both adamant. They both said they thought the shotgun was unloaded. The old man said it was his long standing habit to threaten his wife with the unloaded shotgun. He had no intention to murder her. Therefore, the killing of Mr. Opus appeared to be an accident; that is, the gun had been accidentally loaded.

The continuing investigation turned up a witness who saw the old couple's son loading the shotgun about six weeks prior to the fatal accident. It transpired that the old lady had cut off her son's financial support and the son, knowing the propensity of his father to use the shotgun
threateningly, loaded the gun with the expectation that his father would shoot his

Since the loader of the gun was aware of this, he was guilty of the murder even though he didn't actually pull the trigger. The case now becomes one of murder on the part of the son for the death of Ronald Opus.

Now comes the exquisite twist. Further investigation revealed that the son was, in fact, Ronald Opus. He had become increasingly despondent over the failure of his attempt to engineer his mother's murder. This led him to jump off the ten story building on March 23rd, only to be killed by a shotgun blast passing through the ninth story window. The son had actually murdered himself, so the medical examiner closed the case as a suicide.

(A true story from Associated Press, reported by Kurt Westervelt)

22nd Oct 2001, 16:57
Sounds like a law school exam question to me!

24th Oct 2001, 05:20
All the candidates for the 2001 awards are here. http://darwinawards.com/darwin/index_darwin2001.html

[ 24 October 2001: Message edited by: pigboat ]

24th Oct 2001, 05:38
Sorry Pseudonymn, see: http://www.snopes2.com/horrors/freakish/opus.htm

Very amusing though - especially given that Don Harper Mills did exist, but made the story up for a forensic science meeting. :D

[ 24 October 2001: Message edited by: sanjosebaz ]