Says he has received death threats

Updated: August 16, 2003, 12:06 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The shocking Ted Williams tale just gets more and more sordid.

Larry Johnson, the former COO of Alcor Life Extension Foundation who blew the whistle on the company over its treatment of the Hall of Famer's remains, admits that he briefly posted a photograph of Williams' severed head on his Web site this week. He also asked for "donations" to view it and others, the New York Daily News reported Saturday.

Johnson claims he posted the photo only to draw attention to Williams' plight and to help pay his mounting legal bills.

"In retrospect, I regret putting the pictures on the Web site," Johnson told the Daily News Friday. "There was a series of photos, but only one was of Ted and that wasn't identified. It was a mistake. But at the time, I wanted to educate the public as to what goes on at Alcor and what Ted went through, and I was hoping to get some donations to help me out."

Johnson leaked details of Williams' treatment in a Sports Illustrated report this week. Johnson told SI that he came forward because of the horrific conditions in which Williams' body is stored and the unethical practices of Alcor.

He told the Daily News that he is cooperating with authorities who are investigating Alcor and has received death threats since the Sports Illustrated article appeared.

"Ever since this broke I've had to move from my home," Johnson said to the paper. "They (Alcor) let everyone know where I live and now I'm getting death threats. So I'm doing my Saddam Hussein routine, moving from place to place."

Johnson told the paper that he could have sold his story and the photos to a number of publications but went to SI because it is a "reputable magazine that has a national circulation that could get the story out there. I got nothing for it."

The Daily News reported in February that Williams' close friend Buzz Haymon had visited the cryonics lab and was shocked at the conditions in which the body was stored.

"All I want is Ted's body to come home," he said this week to the paper. "Then we would all have closure."

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