Heaven's Gate member found dead

A man believed to have been member of the Heaven's Gate cult was found dead at a California hotel yesterday.

Another apparent cult member survived an apparent suicide attempt and was hospitalised after the authorities rushed him to a local hotel, San Diego police said.

The CNN cable television network reported that it had received a videotape from the two which was similar to one sent out before the mass suicide of 39 cult members on 24 March.

One was a former member of the cult and the husband of a woman who had died then.

They were found at a Holiday Inn, near the site of the earlier deaths, in Rancho Santa Fe, north of San Diego.

Marshall Herff Applewhite, a former opera singer, died in a luxury mansion outside San Diego with 38 cult followers, aged 24 to 72.

They died, dressed in identical uniforms, after eating a mixture of alcohol and the drug phenobarbitol with apple sauce, and having broadcast their beliefs on a World Wide Web site.

Each of them made video statements, saying that they had left their earthly "vehicles" in order to join a spaceship which was flying in the wake of the Hale-Bopp comet.

"Planet earth is about to be recycled," Mr Applewhite had warned. "The only chance to evacuate is to leave with us."

The two men apparently wanted to catch up with Mr Applewhite and his followers. One of the men said he hoped he had "not missed the bus", CNN reported.

The network said it would not broadcast the tape until their identities were confirmed.

A computer designer, Richard Ford, known as "Rio D'Angelo" in the cult, discovered his fellow members' bodies and had been billed as Heaven's Gate last survivor.

He capitalised on his position to sell the television and film rights to his story.

In an earlier suicide bid, on 1 April, a 58-year-old recluse was found dead in his home in a remote mountain canyon in northern California after committing suicide. He had left a note indicating he believed that he would also join the dead Heaven's Gate cult members.

The "Heaven's Gate" cult helped to design computer web pages.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
University Edible Garden, Leeds – a sustainable garden in the centre of the university, passers-by can help themselves to the home-grown produce
news
Arts and Entertainment
There are no plans to replace R Kelly at the event
music
News
newsThis 8-year-old boy carried his disabled brother through a triathlon
Sport
The Manchester United team walk out ahead of the pre-season friendly between Manchester United and Inter Milan at FedExField
transfers
Life and Style
fashionHealth concerns and 'pornified' perceptions have made women more conscious at the beach
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

JavaScript Developer

£45000 - £60000 per annum + 15% Bonus: Progressive Recruitment: My client, a l...

Lead Application Developer

£80000 - £90000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: I am current...

Year 3 Welsh Teacher vacancy in Penarth

£110 - £120 per day + Travel Scheme and Free training: Randstad Education Card...

Senior Developer - HTML, CSS, PHP, JavaScript, VBA, SQL

£30000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: We are working with one o...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz