Monday, July 18, 2016
50 Years Ago Today (July 18th)
On July 18th, 1966, the body of Rock And Roll Star Bobby Fuller was found dead parked inside his vehicle. His entire body had been saturated with gasoline and he was lying face down in the front seat of the car with an open gas can beside him. The doors and windows were closed ... but not locked.
An autopsy report said that there were bruises on his chest and shoulders and that full rigor mortis had already set in. His right index finger was also broken.
The circumstances of Bobby's death have never been resolved. The immediate reaction of "Who killed Bobby Fuller?" was never pursued ... because, incredibly, The Los Angeles Police Department, in another example of their infinite wisdom, stated in their official investigation that there was "no evidence of foul play" ... and the coroner recorded the death as a suicide.
Just a few months earlier, Bobby and The Bobby Fuller Four were all over the radio with their Top Ten Hit "I Fought The Law", a song written by Sonny Curtis, formerly of The Crickets. (Their latest hit, "Love's Made A Fool Of You", a song written by Buddy Holly, had just dropped off the charts after hitting #20 in Record World Magazine.)
Bobby's brother Randy (who was also a member of his band) remarked at the time "Now how can a man that's dead ... in rigor mortis ... drive a car and pour gas on himself?" Randy stated that the gas can was never even checked for fingerprints. (I should point out that Randy himself has been considered a suspect over the years as well, by fans and researchers hell bent on solving this case.)
It has to rank as one of the greatest mysteries of rock and roll history ... yet no further investigation has ever turned up any new leads. (If there ever was a biopic that needed making, THIS would be the one!)
We covered this whole topic in greater detail back in 2002 back when Forgotten Hits was still just an emailed newsletter to a select audience of fans. In 2005, we did some more digging but came up with very little in the way of new information other than fan speculation. In 2008, we published another updated report on the brand new Forgotten Hits website ... you'll find that link below.
Today Forgotten Hits remembers Bobby Fuller.