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From Miss Piggy
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Their Own Words: Jim Henson
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Discussion in 'Henson People' started by chestermcdragon, Mar 31, 2006.
i always thought it was pneumonia,but my bro said he died of strept throat,which did he die of?
he died of bacterial pnemonia its a rare disease
I had that same desease that Jim died of it can be eassly trested if caught in time, but seeing that Jim believed in the Christian Sciance religion which relies on prayer to heal instead of triditional medecine to heal. He did not think he needed help to be cured. But when he found that he did indeed need help it was too late for the Doctors at the Hospitial to do anything.
Jim was a christian?
This discussion has come up before in another thread.
I'm not positive if Jim Henson was a Christian or not, but I would like to point out that there is a difference between Christianity and Christian Science, despite the name similarities. To read more about that, check out http://www.christianway.org/
In one of the other books written on Jim's life, there is also a mention that Jim believed in many types of religion and spirituality during the course of his life.
When he took ill, a news report at the time said that the Henson family never even had a family doctor to call! So he went straight to the emergency room.
one thing that seems to be overlooked here is the the Streptococcal Pneumonia that he contrated starts out very mildly, most who get it do not relise how serious it is because its symptoms start out very mild, a little sniffle, and a scratchy throat(how many of us have had a cold that just wouldnt go away that didnt seem to get worse or better )
by the time he went to the hospital it was pretty much to late unfortunetly.it is rare, but it does happen,.
while we can speculate about the whys and wherefores , it is pretty much accepted that he was not really a practicing christian scientist, while he was exposed to it at a early age, the main factor seems to be that the "liitle" cold he had became very serious very quickly , and that was what eventually lead to his passing ,
Here's an account of Jim's last days from People magazine at the time of his death:
"Then on Friday, May 4, Henson was a guest on The Arsenio Hall Show. "He admitted he was tired, that he had a sore throat," says Novell. "But he insisted it would go away." True to form, instead of resting in L.A., he went shopping for antiques, then flew to New York for work on the Disney deal and Muppet projects.
On Saturday, May 12, on what was to be the last weekend of his life, Henson, along with daughter Cheryl, made one of his frequent trips to the rural farm town of Ahoskie, N.C., to visit his father and step-mother. "This was the one place he could come where he was totally private," says Barbara Henson. "We have a screen porch, and he just loved sitting out there. He said it was the quietest place he could be." That Saturday afternoon was spent playing a rousing game of croquet. "We all went out for supper," she says. "We had all the family here, maybe 10 or 12 of us, with the children. We just laughed and had a wonderful time."
That night, Henson and Cheryl stayed at a nearby motel, but on "Sunday morning he didn't want to get up," says Barbara. "We thought, 'Oh, he's tired. Let's let him sleep.' When Cheryl brought him over for lunch, he didn't feel like eating. He had the sniffles, and he looked tired. But this had been a busy few months for him lately, and we felt it was understandable."
Henson changed to an earlier flight home. "Coming back Sunday from the airport, he was really tired," says Cheryl. "He sat down on the side of the radiator [in the arrivals area], and I said, 'Oh, Daddy, are you okay?' And he said, 'I'm just tired.' Then he said, 'Hi ho, Kermit the Frog here.' It was very unlike him. I said, 'What, Daddy?'"
On Sunday, back in his three-bedroom apartment at the Sherry-Netherland Hotel, with its panoramic view of Central Park, Henson tried to rest for a Muppet recording session the following day. "When I found out in the morning that he had canceled," says Cheryl. "I realized he really wouldn't do that unless he was sick."
On Monday she visited him, as did his assistant, Anne Kinney, and his son Johnny. "I called him, and he said he'd had a very rough night," says Jane, "but that Anne was there and Johnny was coming over. Everybody was coming in trying to give him chicken soup. I never stay over, I haven’t in years, but he asked me to stay."
Jane arrived at 7 P.M. and, alone with Jim, "we just talked. There was no division of broken marriage or anything like that. We were just there together."
By 2 A.M. Henson was having difficulty breathing and had been coughing up blood, though Jane didn't know for how long. "I remember saying, 'Can we go to the hospital? Can we call a nurse, a doctor?' " She says. "But he said, 'Just rub my back. Try to calm down my breathing.' At one point, he said, 'Maybe I'm dying.' He did say that. But, you know, whenever you're sick, you say, 'God, I feel like I'm going to die.'"
Still, he did not leave for a hospital. Part of the reason, says Jane, was his Christian Science upbringing. While he didn't practice the faith, "it affects his general thinking," says Jane. "Not that he mistrusted doctors, but he would rather just see it through by himself."
The more critical reason was that he just didn't want to bother anyone. "I think he knew there was a possibility he was dying," says Jane, "and that possibility was why he didn't want to go to a doctor. He really didn't want anyone else to be disturbed by his pain."
At 4 A.M. Henson finally told Jane, "I'm breathing too hard. My heart's racing.... Okay, I'll go to the hospital." They called for a car and were taken to New York Hospital but were left at the wrong entrance. Realizing his error, the driver offered to take them to another door, but Henson declined. Typically, he didn't want to inconvenience the man and walked a quarter block to the entrance.
By the time Henson was admitted, his body was rapidly shutting down. Initial X-rays showed small pockets of infection. Several hours later they had spread through his lungs. At 8 A.M. Henson was anesthetized and put on a ventilator. "He was still completely alert, but not comfortable," says Jane. "It was when he was anesthetized that we waved goodbye to him. He didn't say anything. He waved a little. They said we could see him in the intensive-care ward in a few hours."
They would not see him conscious again. Throughout that day, Jane, four of their five children, Frank Oz and a handful of friends kept vigil in the hospital corridor. "Evening came, and it was quiet,” says Jane. "We were comforting each other, tiptoeing back and forth to see him. They were giving him all kinds of antibiotics, trying to keep him alive long enough for them to take effect." At 1:21 Wednesday morning, after two cardiac arrests, his heart stopped beating for the final time."
That's sad......... Out of curiosity, what's his son Johnny doing at the moment?
We are just two days away from the 16th anniversary of Jim's death and it is good to read this again and to think about the way I felt that day, coming home from school to have your grandmother tell you that Sammy Davis Junior and that Muppet guy had died. I feel sick to my stomach just remebering it, but it is good cause it shows I still care and the Muppets still mean something to me.
I am completely Balling!
Henson People Mag COVER
Here's the People Magazine Cover from June 18th, 1990:
and here's that entire issue, page by page -
- with the pictures of Jim and all - in PDF download **(81.2 MB - large file now)
Ever since reading about how Jim's symptoms just spiraled downward into a horrible infection, I now make sure I get myself to a dr. right away when I have a very bad sore throat. I had two bad viral/sinus infections this winter so far and each time they tested me for strep as a pre-caution. It's nothing to fool around with.
Honest to god - up until EXACTLY one week ago, I had pretty much the same feeling as Jim did. I hardly ever see a GP because I hate troubling anyone and assume everything will just clear itself up.
Last Monday, I went the GP with excrutialing pain in my lower back. The Doc said I had an infection, gave me some antibiotics and said "If this gets any worse you MUST come back immediately". The infection rapidly got progressively worse and on Wednesday, I relented and went back to my GP, only to be taken into Hospital, put on a drip and operated on to remove the infection on Thursday morning.
I'm now well on the road to recovery and within the next few weeks will return to work and should be back to normal (in the meantime I have to just put up with some serious discomfort!). One thing I've taken from this is that Doctor's DO know what they are talking about and the human body is a truly fragile creation.
I miss Jim
The whole world misses Jim and could really use him right now. He was at his prime when he died and it's just not fair. There was nothing good that came out of his death besides realizing what we have lost.
I wish that Frank could have carried on the Muppet legacy a little better, he really just abandoned them to focus in on himself and his so-so directing career. Frank Oz is an amazing performer which goes without saying, but that doesn't necessarily make what he did right. He really should have stuck it out the the Muppets and worked a little more closely with the Henson kids on keeping it a family type operation instead of letting it slip into the hands of Disney like it did.
Yes Jim was going through with the sale anyway, but I think he would have ended up buying them back after seeing how Disney just treats them like any other marketable franchise.
The Muppets are now just soulless shells of what they once were. They were so much apart of the times, the 70's and 80's, just like Jim. Jim died and so did the Muppets in my book. They just couldn't go on without him with the same quality that made them what they are known as.
Jim, you are sorely missed; and I think the sooner we all realize and accept that the sooner we can go on and just enjoy the old stuff that really shines and became considered CLASSIC.
I just watched that final appearence on Arsenio and Jim was very off his game and there is actually a part where he makes a joke about a Frog in Kermits throat. Tough to watch.
Well I do agree with that; I do think the classic projects have been neglected for newer projects that have not delivered.
While I sometimes wish Frank Oz was more involved now, I do understand his decision and respect his desire to reach beyond what was safe and explore a new career. It seems like Jim respected that too.
Eh, it was OK for me. I liked the throat thing; it was supposed to be funny that Kermit decided to avoid such a cliche, hehe. And he managed to discuss his relationship with Piggy in an adult manner without sounding like he was insulting her.
Nothing will ever match the classic Muppet projects in quality or entertainment value. That's a given. But it is exactly the aggressive pessimism expressed in this post that I detest. Jim was always an optimist. He wanted the Muppets to live on and even in their clumsy struggles it's good to have them around. The world needs them now more than ever.
Also, Frank Oz gave his adult life to the Muppets and deserves to make his own path. Not all of his films are hits, but he certainly has more of them than the average director. Death at a Funeral, The Score, Bowfinger, In & Out, What About Bob? Little Shop of Horrors and especially Dirty Rotten Scoundrels are all very good films that will be remembered for years to come. No one has the right to criticize this phenomenal entertainer. He is not beholden to anyone.
I miss Jim too, but your post is in bad taste (and actually skirts some forum guidelines). I suggest you seal yourself off from the new Muppet media (like muppets.com and YouTube) that many of us find exciting. Pop in a classic Jim era film and look on the bright side. His work will always be there.
Very well said. I couldnt agree more.
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