Mystery of Bruce Lee's Death

Bruce Lee (27 November 1940 – 20 July 1973) was born in San Francisco, California, and raised in Hong Kong until his late teens. His Hong Kong and Hollywood-produced films elevated the traditional Hong Kong martial arts film to a new level of popularity and acclaim, and sparked the first major surge of interest in Chinese martial arts in the West. The direction and tone of his films changed and influenced martial arts and martial arts films in Hong Kong and the rest of the world as well. Lee became an iconic figure particularly to the Chinese, as he portrayed Chinese national pride and Chinese nationalism in his movies. He primarily practiced Chinese martial arts (Kung fu), particularly Wing Chun. On 20 July 1973, Lee was in Hong Kong, due to have dinner with former James Bond star George Lazenby, with whom he intended to make a film. According to Lee's wife Linda, Lee met producer Raymond Chow at 2 p.m. at home to discuss the making of the movie Game of Death. They worked until 4 p.m. and then drove together to the home of Lee's colleague Betty Ting, a Taiwanese actress. The three went over the script at Ting's home, and then Chow left to attend a dinner meeting.

A short time later, Lee complained of a headache, and Ting gave him an analgesic (painkiller), Equagesic, which contained both aspirin and a muscle relaxant. Around 7:30 p.m., he went to lie down for a nap. After Lee did not turn up for dinner, Chow came to the apartment but could not wake Lee up. A doctor was summoned, who spent ten minutes attempting to revive him before sending him by ambulance to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. However, Lee was dead by the time he reached the hospital. There was no visible external injury; however, his brain had swollen considerably, from 1,400 to 1,575 grams (a 13% increase). Lee was 32 years old. The only two substances found during the autopsy were Equagesic and trace amounts of cannabis. On 15 October 2005, Chow stated in an interview that Lee died from a hypersensitivity to the muscle relaxant in Equagesic, which he described as a common ingredient in painkillers.

When the doctors announced Lee's death officially, it was ruled a "death by misadventure." Dr. Langford, who treated Lee for his first collapse, stated after his death that, "There's not a question in my mind that cannabis should have been named as the presumptive cause of death. "He also believed that, "Equagesic was not at all involved in Bruce's first collapse."Professor R.D. Teare, who had overseen over 100,000 autopsies, was the top expert assigned to the Lee case. Dr. Teare declared that the presence of cannabis was mere coincidence, and added that it would be "irresponsible and irrational" to say that it might have triggered Lee's death.

His conclusion was that the death was caused by an acute cerebral edema due to a reaction to compounds present in the prescription pain killing drug Equagesic. Another doctor, Peter Wu's preliminary opinion was that the cause of death could have been a reaction to cannabis and Equagesic. Dr. Wu would later back off from this position however: "Professor Teare was a forensic scientist recommended by Scotland Yard; he was brought in as an expert on cannabis and we can't contradict his testimony. The dosage of cannabis is neither precise nor predictable, but I've never known of anyone dying simply from taking it."

The exact details of Lee's death are a subject of controversy. But long before his sudden and tragic death at the age of thirty-two, rumors were rife throughout Asia that he had been dead for months. According to one source, Hong Kong Triads had killed Lee because he had refused to pay them protection money. Another claimed that he had been drugged by a former sensei who resented the fact that he taught martial arts to foreigners.

Many Chinese people believe that Lee was the victim of his own rigorous training regime, while others cite drug abuse as the cause of his demise. It is even claimed by some cynics that Lee faked his death and that he is merely waiting for the right time to return to society. The most popular story printed in the Hong Kong press suggested that the American Mafia had killed Lee. After completing the film The Green Hornet, Lee was approached by Mafia agents who wanted him to become the first Asian star in Hollywood. Bravely, Lee refused and returned home to Hong Kong.

Bruce Lee buried next to his son Brandon in Lake View Cemetery, Seattle U.S.A

In the aftermath, it is alleged that humiliated Mafia bosses signed Lee’s death warrant and hired a professional assassin. An interesting postscript to this story claims that Lee’s son (Brandon Lee), also a martial arts actor, was “accidentally” shot dead after he had found vital information about his father’s killer. Perhaps the most outrageous theory regarding Lee’s death is that a prostitute killed him in a fit of panic. If the story is to be believed, Lee had taken a powerful aphrodisiac which had caused him to become very violent during sex. Fearing for her life, the prostitute reached out for the nearest heavy object—a glass ashtray—and struck Lee on the skull. He would never wake from the resulting coma.

Countless documentaries, books and magazines have purported to tell the “true” story of Bruce Lee’s death. As far as the people of Hong Kong are concerned, the full facts surrounding Lee’s passing have never been revealed, and probably never will be.

(Source : Wikipedia & Conspiracy Theories by Kate Tuckett)
(Pics source : pic1 taken from; pic2 taken from
Mystery of Bruce Lee's Death Mystery of Bruce Lee's Death Reviewed by Tripzibit on 15:43 Rating: 5


  1. wow...what a great articles. i do love bruce lee too...

    hopes the true story will be repeal

  2. (RIP666) Yup, me too. Beside Jet Li he's one of my idol when i was a kid until now

  3. Thanks for this nice article. I love the Bruce Lee and Kung fu.

  4. The answer that makes the most sense is that he, like many celebrities, was just made sick and died by the pharmaceutical industry.


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