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1980, June 11: Todmorden Man’s Mysterious Death

The Legend:

On June 11, 1980, in Todmorden, West Yorkshire, England, the body of a 56-year-old man who had gone missing five days previous from another town in Yorkshire while doing a mid-day errand was discovered on top of a large pile of coal. He had died of a heart attack, and had burns on his body from an unknown source. An inquest came to an 'open verdict,' which roughly means they were unable to determine what had happened.

Unreliable

        This is the first listing of this incident in Anomalies, and therefore will require more research to confirm it. This is especially true because the above comes from Jenny Randles and Peter Hough's 1992 book, Spontaneous Human Combustion; this book gives almost no sources for the accounts it relates, in this case attributing the above to "Author's own investigation"... which essentially means "Just trust us." For this reason, this account is marked as both "Unreliable" and "Investigate;" I will add new information as I get a chance to dig further.

        In addition, given the current details this does not sound like a case of spontaneous human combustion; it does sound like a mystery that needs to be examined more, however.