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Buddy Holly's Death Certificate

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Dated 4 February 1959

Immediate cause of death is listed as "(a) Gross trauma to brain due to (b) Crash of airplane."

Other significant conditions are described as "Multiple lacerations face, crushing of chest, multiple fractures of all extremites."

Nature of injury: "Thrown from plane when it crashed to earth."

"The body of Charles H. Holley was clothed in an outer jacket of yellow leather-like material in which 4 seams in the back were split almost full length. The skull was split medially in the forehead and this extended into the vertex region. Approximately half the brain tissue was absent. There was bleeding from both ears, and the face showed multiple lacerations. The consistency of the chest was soft due to extensive crushing injury to the bony structure. The left forearm was factured 1/3 the way up from the wrist and the right elbow was fractured. Both thighs and legs showed multiple factures. There was a small laceration of the scrotum.

Personal effects found with the body are listed on a separate sheet in this report.

Fingerprints were taken of the deceased for purposes of identification."

Ralph E. Smiley, MD

Acting coroner

"Personal effects, Charles Holley

Cash $193.00 less $11.65 coroner's fees - $181.35. 2 cuff links, silver 1/2 in. balls having jeweled band. Top portion of ball point pen."