People Dying / Corpses Discovered In Chimneys

Timble2

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#1
Apparently she died of the flue.

Sky News

Wednesday, September 1 09:44 am

(c) Sky News 2010
Woman Dies While Stuck In Lover's Chimney

A woman's decomposing body has been found wedged inside the chimney of her lover's home after she tried to sneak into his house.

Dr Jacquelyn Kotarac, 49, scaled a ladder to the roof, removed the chimney cap and slid down the flue of the property in Bakersfield, California.

The woman, who had an "on-again, off again" relationship with the man, had gone to the house on Wednesday last week, police said.

But the man refused to let her in and escaped unnoticed from the house "to avoid a confrontation", police added.

Dr Kotarac is believed to have been stuck in the chimney for three days.

Her body was discovered by a house-sitter who noticed "an odour and fluids" coming from the fireplace, police said.

The house-sitter and her son found the woman's body wedged about two feet above the top of the interior fireplace opening.

Firefighters spent five hours dismantling the chimney and flue from the outside of the property to extract the body.

The man's identity has been revealed in media reports as William Moodie, 58, the owner of a petroleum engineering company.

"She made an unbelievable error in judgement and nobody understands why, and unfortunately she's passed away," Mr Moodie told the Associated Press.

"She had her issues, she had her demons, but I never lost my respect for her."

He would not comment on the circumstances that led to her death but described her as a "superb internist who often provided service and medication free of charge to her patients".

Dr Kotarac ran a medical practice seeing as many as 200 patients a week, reports said.

Her office staff reported her missing when she failed to turn up to work.

Bakersfield coroner's office said Dr Kotarac died of asphyxiation and concluded the death was an accident.
 

locussolus

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#2
No disrespect, and RIP, that is quite sad.....however I am sometimes amazed by the bad judgement from those you'd least expect to have it.
 

Cultjunky

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#5
I've never heard that love can make you think you're Santa tho...
 

GNC

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#6
Cultjunky said:
I've never heard that love can make you think you're Santa tho...
Anyone else getting Phoebe Cates in Gremlins flashbacks?
 

rynner2

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#8
Body found in chimney at Derby firm of solicitors

The body of a man - believed to be a burglar - has been found in a chimney at a Derby firm of solicitors.
The discovery was made at Moody and Woolley Solicitors on Wednesday after staff raised concerns about the smell and flies in the office.

Damage to the building in St Mary's Gate was first noticed six weeks ago when builders believed there had been an attempted break-in.
The body has now been removed by police who are trying to identify it.
The builders called in by the firm found a hole in the roof.
Staff claimed the buildings on the street have been targeted by lead thieves in the past.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Derbyshire Police.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-de ... e-22389157
 

escargot

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#9
Didn't something similar happen a while back, where a body was found wedged somewhere in a building in murky circs? The conclusion was that a burglar had broken in and got stuck and died some time before.
 

rynner2

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#10
Derby chimney body named as Kevin Gough

A suspected burglar whose body was found in the chimney of a law firm has been named by police as Kevin Gough.
The 42-year-old is thought to have been in the chimney at Moody and Woolley Solicitors, in Derby, for several weeks.

His body was discovered at about noon on Wednesday after staff raised concerns about flies and a smell at the office in St Mary's Gate.
An inquest is due to open at Derby Coroners Court later.

Martina Longworth, a partner at the firm, said: "It must have been quite a terrible way to die for the poor man and it must be very distressing for his family.
"We would be most concerned for them. It's very sad."

Damage to the building was first noticed six weeks ago when builders believed there had been an attempted break-in.
The builders called in by the firm found a hole in the roof.
Staff claimed the buildings on the street have been targeted by lead thieves in the past.

Police said Mr Gough had no fixed address and they are not treating his death as suspicious.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-de ... e-22396499
 

GNC

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#11
escargot1 said:
Didn't something similar happen a while back, where a body was found wedged somewhere in a building in murky circs? The conclusion was that a burglar had broken in and got stuck and died some time before.
I think you're right, but I'm reminded of Phoebe Cates' dad playing Santa in Gremlins.
 

Vardoger

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#12
escargot1 said:
Didn't something similar happen a while back, where a body was found wedged somewhere in a building in murky circs? The conclusion was that a burglar had broken in and got stuck and died some time before.
Not the same, but I remember a story about a female college professor or similar who probably wanted to surprise her boyfriend and tried to climb down the chimney on his house and got stuck there and died. She was found a few weeks later.
 

EnolaGaia

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This case of a missing Ohio schoolboy seems to have been resolved, unfortunately with the worst-case outcome. Initial indications are that the buy died accidentally.
Police believe a 14-year-old who vanished on his way to school has been found dead in a chimney

Almost a month after Harley Dilly disappeared on his way to school, police believe the Ohio boy's body has been found in a chimney. ...

Harley, 14, was last seen December 20 in Port Clinton as he left for school between 6 and 7 a.m., police said.

At least 75 law enforcement agencies have scoured more than 150 acres with helicopters, trained dogs and search-and-rescue teams ...

During another sweep of the area Monday, authorities zeroed in on a vacant summer home that was undergoing renovation.

There were no signs of forced entry to the house, and there was a lockbox for keys ...
Police went in and discovered a tragic scene.

"Harley's coat, glasses were discovered on the second floor of the house next to a brick chimney," {Port Clinton Police Chief Robert ... } Hickman said.

"We were then able to discover what we believe to be Harley, who was caught in the chimney."

An autopsy was being performed Tuesday to confirm the body's identity and the cause of death.

"This appears to be an accident," the police chief said.

"It appears Harley climbed an antenna tower to the roof and entered a chimney. Once in the chimney, Harley's jacket and glasses were pushed from the chimney, through a flue, and into the second floor of the house. The chimney was blocked between the second and first floor, which trapped Harley."

It was not clear why the boy may have tried to enter the chimney.
SOURCE: https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/14/us/ohio-missing-boy-harley-dilly-likely-found-dead/index.html

.
 

escargot

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#14
This case of a missing Ohio schoolboy seems to have been resolved, unfortunately with the worst-case outcome. Initial indications are that the buy died accidentally.

SOURCE: https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/14/us/ohio-missing-boy-harley-dilly-likely-found-dead/index.html
How terrible for that boy's family.

At first glance I thought this was old news about a youth called Joshua Maddux, who also went missing and was found dead in a chimney.
Here's a Dark Histories page about him:
Joshua Maddux:The Boy in the Chimney
Joshua Maddux went missing in 2008 and seven years later, was found in the chimney of a cabin just two blocks from his home. The question remains, how did he get there?
In May of 2008, 18-year-old Joshua Maddux bid his sister farewell and left his house to take a walk. A nature lover and free spirit, this was nothing unusual, however, when he didn’t return, things took a strange twist. The search for Josh continued for seven long years but remained unfruitful.

In 2015, less than a mile away, Chuck Murphy was demolishing his old wood cabin to make way for a property development. The cabin hadn’t been used in years and inside was damp, the stuffy space smelt badly of rot. As they tore down the chimney, they made a grim discovery. Crammed inside the brickwork lay the mummified body of Joshua Maddux.
Climbing into chimneys - what a strange thing to do. Do people sometimes do it successfully? I've only heard of it going disastrously wrong.
 

EnolaGaia

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#15
... Climbing into chimneys - what a strange thing to do. Do people sometimes do it successfully? I've only heard of it going disastrously wrong.
I know what you mean ... Whenever I see mention of someone in a chimney it always seems to involve their being stuck (sometimes fatally). I'm not sure I've ever seen a news item involving someone successfully entering (or, for that matter, exiting) a house via a chimney.

Both the Maddux and Dilly stories involve abandoned buildings, which seem to attract boys. I know I liked to explore abandoned buildings when I was a kid.

In both cases, the authorities seem to believe the boys became stuck while attempting to descend the chimney. In both cases there were articles of clothing (in Dilly's case, his eyeglasses as well ... ) found inside the house. In the Maddux case this has been cited as evidence he'd been inside the cabin before attempting to re-(?) enter it via the chimney. In the Dilly case, there's an odd reference to his apparently pushing his jacket and glasses down a flue into the house's interior.
 

escargot

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#17
I know what you mean ... Whenever I see mention of someone in a chimney it always seems to involve their being stuck (sometimes fatally). I'm not sure I've ever seen a news item involving someone successfully entering (or, for that matter, exiting) a house via a chimney.

Both the Maddux and Dilly stories involve abandoned buildings, which seem to attract boys. I know I liked to explore abandoned buildings when I was a kid.

In both cases, the authorities seem to believe the boys became stuck while attempting to descend the chimney. In both cases there were articles of clothing (in Dilly's case, his eyeglasses as well ... ) found inside the house. In the Maddux case this has been cited as evidence he'd been inside the cabin before attempting to re-(?) enter it via the chimney. In the Dilly case, there's an odd reference to his apparently pushing his jacket and glasses down a flue into the house's interior.
Yup, there are weird similarities between the two stories. They're not straightforward incidents.

In the Dilly case, there's an odd reference to his apparently pushing his jacket and glasses down a flue into the house's interior.
Could he have been desperately trying to alert whoever was around?

As you say, people don't make the news for successfully entering buildings through chimneys. Here in the UK most house chimneys are too narrow and inaccessible to be used by intruders so one assumes the American ones are different. Like where you see those 'ranch style' fireplaces; are they a common thing?

So is the accidental fireplace-climbing death an actual American trope?

Back in the '80s we had Gremlins -
"The worst Christmas story ever told" - Phoebe Cates' festive tragedy is The Best Bit of Gremlins

In short: not only did her father die on Christmas, he died by breaking his neck coming down the chimney dressed as Santa Claus and they didn’t find him until his body started decomposing days later.
I'm beginning to wonder if we need a thread on bodies found in chimneys.
 

maximus otter

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#20
Or it's 'urban exploration' - because there may have been no intention to rob the place.
Cynically, I would say that it's "urban exploration" if the suspect is caught; "burglary" if they aren't. ;)

A Google search on "burglar caught in chimney" yields almost 1.5M hits.

If these youths had been found trapped in an insecure back window, or attempting to get through a cat flap, everyone would think, "That'll teach you!", and turn the page. Just because it's "down the chimney", out come the psychotherapists' thinking caps.

maximus otter
 

Cochise

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#22
Cynically, I would say that it's "urban exploration" if the suspect is caught; "burglary" if they aren't. ;)

A Google search on "burglar caught in chimney" yields almost 1.5M hits.

If these youths had been found trapped in an insecure back window, or attempting to get through a cat flap, everyone would think, "That'll teach you!", and turn the page. Just because it's "down the chimney", out come the psychotherapists' thinking caps.

maximus otter
As it's boys it might just be curiosity. Both the buildings seem to have been abandoned and easy to enter, so no need to go down the chimney to break in.
 

escargot

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#23
Snopes reckons the story about a father pretending to be Santa, getting stuck in the family's chimney and dying as a result is an urban legend -

Santa Stuck in Chimney

Although there have been numerous verified accounts of amateur Santas getting stuck in chimneys (and some would-be burglars dying there), no instance of a real Santa-garbed father’s perishing in a chimney has yet surfaced.
However, they do note that 'amateur Santas' and burglars have been killed in this way.

Here is a vice.com article on general chimney-deaths -
A Brief History of People Getting Stuck in Chimneys and Dying

Positional asphyxia is a big danger, as are heat and smoke.
 

EnolaGaia

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escargot

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In both cases, the authorities seem to believe the boys became stuck while attempting to descend the chimney
The word 'stuck' to mean 'trapped' was, according to the above-cited vice.com article, possibly first used by the chimney-sweeping trade -

"Sometimes these accidents were the [result of] being jammed or fixed, or, as it was called in the trade, 'stuck,'" Mayhew wrote. It might seem weird that "stuck" was a trade term, but according to the Online Etymology Dictionary, this use of the past participle adjective of the word "stick" didn't technically mean "unable to go any further" until 1885. So it's possible that getting jammed in a chimney is where we got the word "stuck" to begin with.
What a sobering thought.
 

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#26
A few years ago a would be intruder tried to enter a restaurant in Lancashire via the flue vent. Got stuck naturally. It was an old building and a huge amount of demolition was required to get the moron out. The cost was enormous and the Insurers only paid up after a long battle.
 

escargot

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#27
Why was this post of mine edited, and so clumsily? I did mention that the incident had already been discussed on here.

This unfortunate gentleman died, not inside but on top of a tall chimney.

Carlisle Dixons chimney: Man stuck on 290ft structure has died

A man who was stuck upside down at the top of a 290ft former mill chimney for about 15 hours has died.

Emergency services were called to Dixons Chimney in Carlisle at about 02:20 GMT but an attempt to rescue him with a helicopter was abandoned.

A specialist cherry picker from Scotland was drafted in to help and the man, in his 50s and from Carlisle, was brought down at about 16:45 GMT.
For more on this story, see:

Carlisle Chimney / Smokestack Climber Death (Oct. 2019)
https://forums.forteana.org/index.p...mney-smokestack-climber-death-oct-2019.66825/
 
Last edited:

escargot

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#28
A few years ago a would be intruder tried to enter a restaurant in Lancashire via the flue vent. Got stuck naturally. It was an old building and a huge amount of demolition was required to get the moron out. The cost was enormous and the Insurers only paid up after a long battle.
Did he die or was he rescued?
 

EnolaGaia

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... Climbing into chimneys - what a strange thing to do. Do people sometimes do it successfully? I've only heard of it going disastrously wrong.
We only hear about it when the attempted passage is unsuccessful. If the trapped person is lucky (?) he / she might attract some help before dying in place.

Back in 2004 Mighty Emperor posted two stories of the latter (trapped but saved) variety in the World's Dumbest Criminals thread. Both entrapments occurred during attempted burglaries.

This one involved a chimney:
https://forums.forteana.org/index.php?threads/the-worlds-dumbest-criminals.10650/post-329046

The warmer-climate version involves air conditioning ducts rather than a chimney:
https://forums.forteana.org/index.php?threads/the-worlds-dumbest-criminals.10650/post-334442
 
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