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Tue., Jan. 31, 2012, 9:48 a.m.

Dying from your focus or passion

From the Associated Press today, this story: "Dr. Richard Olney, an internationally renowned researcher who dedicated his life to finding a cure for Lou Gehrig’s disease, has died after his own eight-year battle with the disease. He was 64."

People who die from the same things they research (before they get the thing themselves) or people who die from the things they have focused on in life -- this phenomenon has always intrigued me. I remember reading about a reporter who did stories about people jumping off bridges to their death and then did the same later. The brain tumor researcher who later died of one herself. People who collect exotic animals and then get mauled or eaten by them.

Do we attract what will kill us? Or just coincidence?

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Spokesman-Review features writer Rebecca Nappi, along with writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., discuss here issues facing aging boomers, seniors and those experiencing serious illness, dying, death and other forms of loss.