The tragic deaths of celebrities at the hands of their own fans have shocked and saddened the world. In many cases, these stars had no idea that the very people they had worked so hard to entertain would be the cause of their untimely demise. Here are some of the most notable celebrities who were killed by their own fans.
- John Lennon – On December 8, 1980, John Lennon, former member of the Beatles, was shot and killed by Mark David Chapman. Chapman was a Beatles fan who had become disillusioned with Lennon’s music and had become fixated on him as a symbol of everything that was wrong with the world.
- Selena – Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, known simply as Selena, was a beloved Tejano music superstar who was tragically murdered by Yolanda Saldívar on March 31, 1995. Saldívar was the founder of Selena’s fan club and had been embezzling money from the organization. When Selena discovered the fraud, she fired Saldívar, who then shot her in a hotel room.
- Rebecca Schaeffer – Rebecca Schaeffer was an up-and-coming actress who was shot and killed by Robert John Bardo on July 18, 1989. Bardo had become obsessed with Schaeffer after seeing her on the television show “My Sister Sam” and had been stalking her for months before finally killing her.
- Dimebag Darrell – On December 8, 2004, former Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell was shot and killed while performing on stage with his new band, Damageplan. The shooter, Nathan Gale, was a fan of Pantera who believed that the band had stolen his lyrics.
- Albert Ebosse – Cameroonian footballer Albert Ebosse was fatally struck by a rock thrown by one of his own fans on August 23, 2014, after a match in Algeria. The Algerian Football Federation subsequently suspended all matches in the country indefinitely.
- Andres Escobar – Colombian soccer player Andres Escobar was shot and killed on July 2, 1994, just days after scoring an own goal in a World Cup match against the United States. His killer, Humberto Muñoz Castro, was a fan who had lost a considerable amount of money betting on the match.
- Christina Grimmie – Christina Grimmie was a rising star in the music industry when she was tragically shot and killed by a fan after a concert in Orlando, Florida, on June 10, 2016. The shooter, Kevin Loibl, had become obsessed with Grimmie and had been stalking her on social media for months before the attack.
- Gianni Versace – Fashion designer Gianni Versace was shot and killed on July 15, 1997, by Andrew Cunanan, a man who had been stalking him for months. Cunanan was a fan of Versace’s work and had become fixated on him, eventually leading to the tragic shooting outside Versace’s Miami Beach mansion.
- Mikhail Lermontov – Mikhail Lermontov was a Russian poet and writer who was fatally wounded in a duel with his own fan, Nikolai Martynov, on July 27, 1841. Martynov had become obsessed with Lermontov’s work and challenged him to a duel after feeling insulted by one of his poems.
- Jesse James – Jesse James, an American outlaw and notorious figure from the Wild West era, was shot and killed by one of his own gang members, Robert Ford, on April 3, 1882. Ford had become obsessed with the idea of killing James and saw it as a way to become famous, but his plan ultimately ended in tragedy.
- Sharon Tate – Actress Sharon Tate was brutally murdered by followers of Charles Manson on August 9, 1969. While Tate was not killed by one of her own fans, Manson had instructed his followers to commit the murders in the hopes of inciting a race war.
The tragic deaths of these celebrities serve as a reminder of the dangerous side of fandom. While most fans are harmless and simply want to show their support for their favorite stars, there are those who become obsessed and fixated, leading to tragic consequences. It is important for celebrities and their teams to take precautions and protect themselves from those who may pose a threat.