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Fan Man Finale Sad by Stan Silliman humor sports comedy cartoons articles


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman
Fan Man Finale Sad

        This is one sad story. It involves a guy – James “Fan Man” Miller – who loves to paraglide into palaces: Caesars Palace, Buckingham Palace, you name it. We’ve given you many stories of attention-crazed fans who met bad ends like body painters with frost bit nipples or loonies who wore fright wigs to games, but for ultimate sadness, this one tops it.

    The ashes of Fan Man have been scattered in the icy Alaska wilderness by the mother of the infant son he did not live to see.

    Fan Man was a parachutist and a paraglider pilot who not only was an avid outdoorsman, computer technician and extreme sports enthusiast but also did the single most outrageous stunt at a sporting event. That event was on November 6, 1993 when, during a boxing match between Evander Holyfield and Riddick Bowe, he circled Caesar’s Palace for ten minutes waiting for his moment. That moment came during the second minute of the seventh round when he flew into the arena getting his paraglider tangled with the lighting ropes and crashing into the top rope of the ring. What did get for his trouble… a severe beating in which he was knocked unconscious. One security officer struck Miller twenty times before rushing Miller to the hospital. Fans at the boxing event cut Miller’s paraglider into pieces for souvenirs. 

    Miller later said “It was a heavyweight fight and I was the only guy knocked out.”

    In January 1994, he flew into a Broncos-Raiders game in Los Angeles. Luckily, in terms of getting beat silly for your silliness, he did not land in the stands filled with Raider fans. In February of 1994 he skydived into the middle of a soccer match in Bolton, England. While he was in England he figured he could top that stunt. How? By painting himself green except for his privates which he covered with glow-in-the-dark orange and landing his paraglider on top of Buckingham Palace.
Fan Man Finale Sad by Stan Silliman humor sports comedy cartoons articles
    What did he get for his trouble?  How about being arrested by British authorities, branded an IRA terrorist by Interpol, threatened with a life sentence if he didn’t reveal his accomplices, held in prison for 42 days and fined. Plus he was banned from the United Kingdom for life and when he asked the judge if he could spread his ashes in England, the mean old judge said “No.” Many, many Brits feel responsible for the bad end James “Fan Man” Miller finally met.

    Being branded a terrorist and jailed in England prevented him from finding work in the U.S. He moved to Alaska so he could soar above the beautiful wilderness. But without work there was no health care. No health care resulted in worry and stress plus it didn’t help that he was diagnosed as in need for a heart by-pass.  The doctors grounded him. No more flying. The doctors took away the one thing he loved most.    

    James Miller had been missing for six months during which time his girlfriend Courtney Oxman gave birth to baby Logan. Alaskan hunters came across his decomposed body hanging from a tree by the cords of his parachute. It was ruled a suicide. He was 39.

    We warned you; sad story with a lot of excitement along the way.  

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