One of the toughest losses of 2017 was the passing of American rock legend Tom Petty. Even if you weren’t a fan of his catalog, horror fans will remember his integral contribution to The Silence of the Lambs as the song American Girl introduced Buffalo Bill’s next victim. Horror fans who came of age in the 1980s were also enamored by his ultra-creepy Alice in Wonderland-themed video for Don’t Come Around Here No More, while more recently, Last Dance with Mary Jane proved a macabre meditation on death and grief.
Today, the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office released a report detailing Petty’s cause of death; this announcement was preceded by a statement from Petty’s family. To make a long story short: Petty died of an accidental drug overdose, having combined several powerful medications in order to alleviate the pain from a fractured hip.
The AP Reports:
The coroner’s findings showed Petty had a mix of prescription painkillers, sedatives and an antidepressant. Among the medications found in his system were fentanyl and oxycodone. An accidental overdose of fentanyl was also determined to have killed Prince in April 2016.
“As a family we recognize this report may spark a further discussion on the opioid crisis and we feel that it is a healthy and necessary discussion and we hope in some way this report can save lives. Many people who overdose begin with a legitimate injury or simply do not understand the potency and deadly nature of these medications.”
While time heals all wounds, knowing that Petty’s death was accidental, and therefore avoidable, is a painful revelation. The opioid crisis in America is nothing short of an epidemic, with fentanyl revealing itself to be an especially lethal compound. All of us here at Horror Freak News continue to send our condolences to Petty’s fans, friends, and family while imploring policymakers to seek real answers and increased methods of control for dangerous, highly addictive medications.