1. John Lennon
October 1940 – 8 December 1980 (age 40)
The former Beatle was shot in the back and killed outside The Dakota Building in New York City on the 8th December 1980. The first photo below, which chillingly shows Lennon signing an autograph for his killer Mark Chapman a few hours before his death, is often claimed to be the last photo of Lennon, but it is in fact the second grainy photo which is the final image of John.
The photo below, taken by Paul Goresh, is so grainy as the flash failed to go off.
2. Amy Winehouse
14 September 1983 – 23 July 2011 (age 27)
Troubled soul Amy Winehouse tragically became a member of the infamous ’27 club’ when she was found dead at her flat on the 23rd July 2011. The official cause of her death was noted by the coroner as ‘misadventure’, with forensic investigators finding 2 empty bottles of vodka in her room and Amy’s blood alcohol level being 5 times the legal drink drive limit at time of death.
This is the last public picture of Amy, which was taken by paparazzi 2 days before her death.
3. Jim Morrison
December 8, 1943 – July 3, 1971 (age 27)
The second member of the 27 club on our list is former The Doors frontman Jim Morrison. The enigmatic Morrison died in Paris in 1971 and although the official cause of death is disputed, there have long been rumours that he died of a heroin overdose. Morrison’s body is buried at Pere Lachaise cemetery in Northern Paris.
This is the last known photo of Jim Morrison, taken a week before his death, in the town of Saint-Leu-d’Esserent, about 55 km (34 mi) north of Paris. The picture is part of a set of photos by photographer Alain Ronay.
4. Notorious B.I.G.
May 21, 1972 – March 9, 1997 (age 24)
Notorious B.I.G. (born Christopher Wallace) was the victim of a drive by shooting at 12.45am on the 9th March 1997. In the photo below, B.I.G. is seen leaving the Soul Train Music Awards with Sean Coombs around 12.30am, a mere 15 minutes before he was murdered.
5. Michael Jackson
August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009 (age 50)
Michael Jackson died in controversial circumstances on the 25th June 2009. The official cause of death was cardiac arrest, caused by acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication and his personal physician Conrad Murray was subsequently convicted of involuntary manslaughter.
Prior to his death, Jackson had been rehearsing for a series of sold out shows in London and the image below was taken on June 23, 2009 – just 2 days before he died.