2017 marks our second year producing the "Notable Deaths" infographic timeline. I'd like to say we could draw some solid data-driven conclusions now that we have two graphics to compare, but there's so much subjectivity in this process that it makes drawing actual scientifically valid assertions impossible. As we wrote in last year's post:
"How do you assign value or weight to the magnitude of someone's death — or their life? What makes one person more famous or noteworthy or iconic than someone else? It's all subjective."
However, there are a few noteworthy observations we can make after pouring through this year's timeline:
1. It was a bad year if you were a supercentenarian – defined by Dictionary.com as a person significantly older than 100 years of age, typically one who has reached the age of 110. No less than four such individuals passed on this year.
2. A lot of professional wrestlers also cashed in their chips in 2017. This isn't particularly unusual, as many of these folks have lived lives that would make Alaskan crab fishermen look like momma's boys. Still, some legendary figures jumped off the top rope for the last time this year.
3. Last year's timeline featured 89 poor souls that passed into the great beyond. The 2017 timeline features 134 individuals – an increase of 51%. It should be pointed out again that this is a subjective exercise and who gets included and who doesn't is subject to judgement calls. However, it's not a completely losey-goosey process, and there are some rules and criteria we apply to the undertaking of assembling the timeline, so an increase this large from one year to the next is significant.
4. The deadliest day for noteworthy individuals in 2017 was November 19 with four famous souls on the timeline shuffling off their mortal coil.
This infographic is part of a continuing series that presents information as accurately, objectively and impartially as possible. This series of information graphics will always reveal the sources used so readers can see the data for themselves and reach their own conclusions about what these graphics reveal. We encourage you to weigh information from multiple outlets in order to make informed judgments about the subjects featured in these infographics .
Click here to find out more about the impetus for this series.