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5 Famous Hoarding Cases

Homer Lusk Collyer and Langley Collyer

The extremely reclusive Collyer brothers, Homer and Langley, are perhaps two of the most famous hoarders of all time, but it took their deaths in 1947 to really shoot them into the spotlight. Langley, the younger of the two brothers, looked after his eventually blind and paralyzed sibling, while roaming town at night to collect more items. To protect the approximate 100 tons of stuff piled high in the brothers' Manhattan brownstone, Langley would set booby traps.

Langley was killed when he accidentally triggered one of these traps, but when the smell finally caused overwhelmed neighbors to call the police, it was Homer whose body was found first. He had starved to death much too recently to make such an odor, so the search for Langley was still on. It would be weeks before he was found -- after a citywide search -- just 10 feet from his deceased sibling, unearthed from the debris he had spent so many years diligently amassing.