Man Who Vowed to Live Forever Died Over the Weekend

Illustration for article titled Man Who Vowed to Live Forever Died Over the Weekend

Robert C.W. Ettinger, who famously said that death was for the unprepared and the unimaginative, died on Saturday. But the physics teacher and science fiction writer may be coming back — his family froze his body cryonically.

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Ettinger, widely considered the founder of the cryonics movement, is being stored in a vat of liquid nitrogen in a facility just outside Detroit, along with 100 other "immortalists" who were frozen at death. Ettinger wrote The Prospect of Immortality in 1962, arguing that people would become nobler and more responsible if they were going to live forever — and if the world got too crowded, everyone could take turns going into suspended animation. He told the New Yorker last year that his frozen clients are "not truly dead in any fundamental sense."

Among those 100 people already frozen are Ettinger's two deceased wives, one of whom died in 1987 and the other of whom died in 2000. If both women are revived at once, along with Ettinger himself, "that will be a high-class problem," Ettinger once admitted. [Washington Post]

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Photo via Cryonics.org.

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DISCUSSION

LeonardDandogs
LeonardDandogs

I wonder if this guy believed in his own project or was it a money making gimmick.

I say that because of his second marriage. If he truly believed that his first wife wasn't dead and he'd be seeing her again in the future, then why would he remarry? That speaks to a lack of faith in the technology and self-serving behavior while alive. It would be like getting married again while your wife is in the hospital for a brief stay.

Generally, most people wait until their spouse is discharged.