Skip to main content
  1. Arts & Entertainment
  2. Celebrity

Pugilistic stance noted by coroner in Paul Walker's autopsy report

See also

A pugilistic stance is a defensive position that the body takes on (perhaps subconsciously) where the body shows flexing of elbows, knees, hip, and neck as well as clenched fists and occurs when people's bodies burn. On Jan. 3, Yahoo! News reported that actor Paul Walker's body was found in a pugilistic stance, proving that he was bracing for impact and that his body reacted to flames that engulfed his body.

"He had several fractures throughout his body, including his jaw, collarbone, and left upper arm," Yahoo! News reported, this according to the autopsy report which was released in full earlier this week.

The pugilistic stance is "caused by high-temperatures in fire, resulting in muscle stiffening and shortening; it occurs even if the person was dead before the fire" according to the Free Medical Dictionary.

While some people wondered how the coroner would learn Walker's exact cause of death, the way that his body was found and the way his muscles responded to the crash gave definitive answers. Walker was supine, or laying with his face up, which suggests that his seat was pushed back. The coroner reported that the car likely topped speeds of 100mph before the driver, Roger Rodas, lost control. Paul Walker's cause of death was listed as "combined effects of traumatic and thermal injuries."

A pugilistic stance does prove that Walker burned but doesn't prove that he "burned alive" as it's really the body's reaction to being burned (regardless if the person is dead or alive). The way that Walker died is tragic and reading the coroner's report makes it all the more depressing.

© Effie Orfanides 2014

Advertisement

Arts & Entertainment

  • Miley Cyrus
    Find out why Miley Cyrus was forced to cancel a Kansas City 'Bangerz' show
    Video
    Today's Buzz
  • Kim Kardashian
    Watch Kim Kardashian transform from socialite to one of Hollywood's hottest moms
    Camera
    Celebrity Buzz
  • X-Men
    The final trailer for 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' is here, and it's marvelous
    Movie Buzz
  • Woman mugged
    A woman is mugged on live TV during a segment discussing the crime rate
    Pop Culture
  • Clint Lowery
    Exclusive: Clint Lowery talks about the new acoustic Sevendust album and much more
    Celebrity Q&A
  • Jermaine Jackson
    Jermaine Jackson shuts down filming of 'Celebrity Wife Swap' over hoarding accusations
    Video
    TV Buzz

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about Examiner.com and apply today!