Chester, IL -- Popeye the Sailor, beloved hero and celebrity, died yesterday as the result of botulism poisoning. In an ironic twist of fate, the old sailor ingested the deadly toxin from the vegetable he has championed for almost a century.
Popeye reportedly sealed his fated when he resorted to a can of botulism contaminated spinach during a bar fight in his hometown of Chester, Illinois. Several of Popeye's friends were with him trying to convince him to discard the can of spinach he had with him because it appeared to be swollen and puffy, which is a sign that canned foods may contain the bacteria that produces the poison. Popeye told his friends, "I've been eatin' me spinach for seventy years. It helped me kick the crap out of a pile of Krauts and Japs. Ya think I'm gonna suddenly quit eatin it now?" Several foreign tourists at the bar overheard Popeye's insensitive remarks and started an altercation, which prompted Popeye to pop open, and consume the deadly can of spinach.
Ms. Olive Oyl, life long friend and lover of Popeye was with him at his home when he passed away. Ms. Oyl issued the following statement:
"Popeye became extremely ill several days after eating a can of spinach he had with him at a local tavern. He became weak and bedridden, at which time his nephews and I removed all of the spinach from his home. Still, he was able to produce a can from thin air as he always does, and he ate it while we were all in another part of the house. He called out to us and mumbled something we could not understand. He reached out for his corncob pipe and clearly said, 'Me life was so much simpler in black and white.' He then closed his eyes and passed on.
His four nephews, Peepeye, Poopeye, Pipeye, and Pupeye are grief stricken but wish to extend their thanks for the outpouring of sympathy from Popeye's legions of fans."
It is unclear whether his final can of spinach contributed to his death. State health authorities are testing the can to determine if it was contaminated also.
Swee'pea, son of Ms. Oyl and whose relationship with Popeye is unclear, issued a statement from his cell on death row in New Jersey's Trenton State Prison: "Now maybe I can get a DNA sample from the old grouchy bastard and find out is he is my father or my uncle, or both. Or, who the hell cares anyways."
Popeye's body will be transported to an undisclosed location on the Pacific Ocean where he will be buried at sea as per his final request.