How Steve McQueen Passed Away? All About His Death - OtakuKart (2024)

Steve McQueen was one of the manliest and most talented Hollywood celebrities of the 60s. Who was wildly known for his antihero roles & his love for cars and racing? Steve had one of the most interesting careers in Hollywood. Throughout his life, he has seen lots of ups and downs.

He has seen poverty, had gone through a rough abusive childhood, has been a gangster, has worked with criminals from a young age, and has been a movie star and a race car driver. His life was nothing short of a Hollywood movie. During his career, he worked in several blockbuster movies. Some of his famous films are The Magnificient 7, The Great Escape, The Getaway, Le Mans, The Cincinnati Kid, Papillon, etc.

Steve’s movies made a lot of money at the box office. People just loved him and wanted to see him on a big screen, which eventually turned Steve into one of the biggest Hollywood superstars and one of the highest-paid actors in the world. But unfortunately, his life and career came to an end when he got diagnosed with “Pleural Mesothelioma,” a form of cancer that had no cure at that period of time.


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How Steve McQueen Passed Away? All About His Death - OtakuKart (1)

How Did Steve McQueen Die?

Steve McQueen was a heavy smoker, and he used to smoke about “2 packets of cigarettes” every day. But his symptoms began appearing in 1978 when Steve started coughing a lot. After that, he gave up on his cigarettes and went through treatment, but that did not bring any improvement to his health. Later that year, after a biopsy, it was revealed that Steve was actually suffering from Mesothelioma.

A form of cancer that happens due to excess exposure to Asbestos. Before working in the movies, Steve served in the military. He worked for “The US Marine Corps,” spending most of his time working in naval ships, where he got exposed to Asbestos.

Asbestos is tiny fibers that can be inhaled when someone is exposed to an Asbestos environment. They get into your body and affect the Pleura, “A thin layer around the lungs,” causing irritation and mutation in them, which ultimately causes cancer.

How Steve McQueen Passed Away? All About His Death - OtakuKart (2)

Asbestos materials are important in a naval ship. They were mostly used in boilers, pipes, valves, several instruments, decks, floor tiles, etc. People who majorly worked below the deck as boilermen, pipefitters, etc., were highly affected by Asbestos. Asbestos is not something that only affects people working on a ship. People who work in movies also get exposed to Asbestos.

Asbestos was majorly used in the fire safety suits of the stuntman, was used to build several kinds of sets, was used in race driver’s suits, as movie sound stage insulation, etc. Steve Mcqueen had worked in both of these fields. He has worked below the decks of a naval ship fixing Asbestos laced pipes and on movie sets, doing stunts by wearing an asbestos-laced suit.

He was exposed to Asbestos for a larger period of time, all throughout his career, which ultimately gave Steve lung cancer. But Steve’s suffering did not stop there. Along with cancer, Steve also developed Tumour. The doctors advised him not to operate on the tumor as its inoperable. If he chooses to do an operation, his heart wont is able to take that pressure.

But Steve ignored those warnings and went to a Juarez clinic and had an operation. The doctors were unaware of his real identity, and they did the operation. The operation was successful, but Steve’s heart could not handle the pressure. So after 12 hours of his tumor operation, Steve died of a heart attack. And passed away at the age of 50.

Who Was Steve McQueen?

During his time, Steve was one of the biggest actors in the world. Although his life ended with a tragedy, he lived a life that many people could only dream of. Steve had a very rough childhood, his father left him at a very young age, and his stepfather turned out to be an abusive father who regularly abused him and his mother.

This made Steve really strong from the inside, and he ultimately turned into a rebel and joined some local gang, spending his time doing small crimes. But his fate changed forever once he became a Hollywood actor. And not just a regular Hollywood actor but one of the highest-paid actors in the world. Steve died at the age of 50.

After suffering for years from cancer, he finally died from a heart attack. And as the saying goes, “life must not be long. It should be big” Steve McQueen’s life definitely stands by this quote.

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How Steve McQueen Passed Away? All About His Death - OtakuKart (2024)


How did Steve McQueen pass away? ›

Sadly, McQueen's acting career was cut short by an unexpected pleural mesothelioma diagnosis. It is believed that McQueen was exposed to asbestos while serving in the United States Marine Corps in the late 1940s. In 1980, McQueen died of mesothelioma at the age of 50.

Was Steve McQueen buried? ›

Steve McQueen passed away on November 7, 1980, at age 50 after the cancer surgery which was said to be successful. He was cremated and his ashes were scattered at sea.

Who was Steve McQueen's true love? ›

It was believed Ali McGraw remained the apple of Steve McQueen's eye even years after their relationship's conclusion, with her remaining his true love until his untimely death.

What happened to Steve McQueen's son? ›

Chadwick McQueen is a professional sports car driver and endured a horrific crash during a race in Daytona FL, leaving him in a 3 week coma with many broken bones. In an official interview he is thankful to be alive, but this has definitely altered his abilities in Karate as his body heals.

What were Steve McQueen's last words when he died? ›

McQueen was asleep when his heart failed, and the doctor said he died without saying anything.

How did Steve McQueen get mesothelioma? ›

Oftentimes, asbestos exposure can be directly linked to specific job occupations, which many people would not associate with celebrities. But, before the world knew such famous actors as Steve McQueen or Ed Lauter, they each were exposed to asbestos, and ultimately succumbed to complications from mesothelioma.

Who was Steve McQueen's daughter? ›

How old would Steve McQueen be today? ›

Today, March 24, 2023, would have been Steve McQueen's 93rd birthday! The popular '60s and '70s actor died at just 50 in 1980 after undergoing some unorthodox cancer treatments.

Who is the grandson of Steve McQueen? ›

Steve McQueen's 33-year-old grandson, Steven R. McQueen, shares a name and a career with the movie legend.

Who did Steve McQueen leave his money to when he died? ›

His pups—Juice, Callum and Minter—were included in his suicide note and had even walked the runway with him. He left the same amount of money to his godson, nieces, and nephews, as well as each of his two housekeepers. McQueen's two brothers and three sisters will each receive $410,000.

What nationality is Steve McQueen's first wife? ›

On November 2, 1956, he married Filipina actress and dancer Neile Adams, with whom he had a daughter, Terry Leslie (June 5, 1959 – March 19, 1998), and a son, Chad (born December 28, 1960). McQueen and Adams divorced in 1972.

Were James Dean and Steve McQueen lovers? ›

There were even rumours that he and James Dean had been lovers. “James Dean wasn't Steve's lover – he was mine,” laughs Adams. “But that was before I met Steve.

What was Steve McQueen doing when he died? ›

Forty years ago, Nov. 7, 1980, actor Steve McQueen died of heart failure at a Juárez clinic while recovering from surgery to remove cancerous tumors of the neck and stomach.

Who is Steve McQueen's wives? ›

As a leading actor during the 1960s and 1970s he was a top box-office draw. McQueen was married to actress Neile Adams (now known as Neile McQueen Toffel), actress Ali MacGraw, and model Barbara Minty. McQueen was nominated for an Academy Award in the best actor category for THE SAND PEBBLES (1966).

Why did Steve McQueen's daughter need a liver transplant? ›

The cause, Neile explained, was the cumulative effect of prescription painkillers on Terry's severely damaged liver, already weakened from years-long hemo-chromotosis and pancreatitis …

What happened to Steve McQueen's daughter? ›

She died of respiratory failure Thursday at UCLA Medical Center, according to her mother, McQueen's first wife, Neile Adams, now Neile Toffel. “Terry had been troubled by numerous medical problems in recent years,” her mother said.

What was Charles Bronson's cause of death? ›

Background. He was born in Ehrenfeld, Pennsylvania. Bronson was married to Jill Ireland (his second marriage, 1968–1990) until her death from breast cancer. He died of pneumonia and Alzheimer's disease.

Who did Steve McQueen leave his money too? ›

His pups—Juice, Callum and Minter—were included in his suicide note and had even walked the runway with him. He left the same amount of money to his godson, nieces, and nephews, as well as each of his two housekeepers. McQueen's two brothers and three sisters will each receive $410,000.

Who was the highest paid actor in The Great Escape? ›

By then, Steve McQueen was the undisputed big name, but he was actually paid $87,500, to James Garner's $150,000. During filming he had become powerful enough to threaten to walk off the project if he wasn't given a bigger role, and he made various other ego-driven demands.

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