January 12, 1967 James Bedford, a university psychology professor from California, becomes the first person to be cryogenically preserved- frozen after death in the hope he may be thawed and brought back to life if and when the adequate technology has been developed. Attempts had been made to carry out the process before Bedford’s death but were abandoned. Within hours of dying a natural death caused by cancer at the age of 73, Bedford had been covered in an anti-freeze to prevent ice forming on his dead body and frozen in liquid nitrogen. His body has been transferred to different institutions since he died, although he has been at the Alcor Life Extension Foundation based in Arizona (see picture) since 1982, waiting to start life where he left it in the 1960s.
Also on January 12: Sicily’s Palermo Uprising takes place (1848); start of the Zanzibar Revolution (1964); launch of the RMS Queen Mary 2, the world’s largest ocean liner (2004).
Born on January 12: Jack London (1876), Sergei Korolev (1907), Joe Frazier (1944), Howard Stern (1954).