Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

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Brandy Vaughan (Photo: Facebook)
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By edhat staff

After an investigation, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office determined the death of anti-vaccine activist Brandy Vaughan was due to natural causes.

Vaughan, a 44-year-old resident of Santa Barbara City, was found down in the bathroom of her E. Sola Street residence on December 7, 2020. Paramedics arrived and life-saving measures were initiated but were unsuccessful, states the Sheriff's Office.

The Santa Barbara City Police Department responded to the scene and investigated the circumstances surrounding her death. Their investigation found no signs of foul play or anything suspicious to warrant further investigation. Since Vaughan’s death occurred outside the direct care of a medical doctor, the investigation was turned over to the Sheriff / Coroner to determine the cause and manner of death.

"The Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office conducted a thorough investigation which included an autopsy, in depth toxicology screening, interviews and medical record review. At the conclusion of the Coroner’s months long investigation, the Office determined the manner of her death to be Natural, caused by bi-lateral Pulmonary Thromboembolus," stated the Sheriff's Office.

The Coroner’s Office concluded its investigation and will be finalizing reports and updating the State of California death certificate accordingly.

Vaughan, a former Merck pharmaceutical representative, was an outspoken critic of pharmaceutical companies and created the nonprofit organization Learn The Risk, formerly named the Council of Vaccine Safety, that aims to educate people on the "dangers of pharmaceutical products, including vaccines and unnecessary medical treatments," according to the nonprofit's website. 

The Santa Barbara resident and UC Santa Barbara alum stated pharmaceutical companies are intentionally making people sick for profit. 

Vaughan had tens of thousands of followers throughout the world, some of whom are questioning the nature of her death and suggesting foul play.

“Rest in peace to my friend and fellow colleague and Activist and hero, Brandy Vaughan founder of Learn The Risk org. Brandi was just found dead by her only son, who is a minor, at such a young age. She posted publicly many times that if she were found dead it was foul play,” wrote Erin Elizabeth of Health Nut News wrote on Twitter.

Vaughan is survived by her son Bastian.

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a-1613691569 Feb 18, 2021 03:39 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

I find it totally unnecessary and tonedeaf to plug her BS antivax website and opinions, it adds nothing to the article. These dangerous, unscientific views gain traction in large part because they are given a platform to reach the uneducated masses. Just like Facebook made the decision to block all antivax rhetoric and posts, in my opinion we all have a social responsibility to quell these irresponsible and deadly views. Especially so when a pandemic depends on the masses choosing to accept a vaccine!

a-1613700109 Feb 18, 2021 06:01 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

The article reports the facts. What the article didn't go into detail on, thankfully, was how the Sheriff's Dept was bombarded with calls/emails from this lady's followers about her death being some "hit" from big pharma. It's nuts. I'm not involved in the anti-vaxx thing so I had never heard of her but I did see a statement on her death in December from the Sheriff's Office which i thought was weird. Most people don't get that when they die. So I looked deeper and saw how many people were pressuring the sheriff for an investigation, which they did. Seems appropriate to report the facts surrounding her death and who she was without getting into the conspiracies.

Seabird Feb 18, 2021 07:23 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

@5:16pm, I'm sure you thought that was cute, but wager that her son and loved ones would not. To answer your tongue-in-cheek question, there are drugs that can help to treat them, but unfortunately the majority go undetected and are non-symptomatic until it is too late. So sorry that her life was cut short.

a-1613705032 Feb 18, 2021 07:23 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

@6:01 pm - One can report facts without linking to websites promoting views that threaten society as we know it (not joking - antivax is THAT serious of a problem), or explaining their backstory that refutes any and all vaccine science as we know it. I believe you are underestimating the threat antivaxxers pose to all of us, and especially to the most vulnerable among us - babies and people with health conditions that preclude them from being able to receive vaccines. Think of it another way: Do news organizations post hyperlinks to the Proud Boys website if there is an article about a Proud Boy? Do they include a little paragraph blurb explaining why the Proud Boys believe what they do? Absolutely not! This is no different.

a-1613710709 Feb 18, 2021 08:58 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

We have a family member who also had this serious condition and survived to tell the tale. It is usually started with a blood clot in the legs which travels to the lungs. It can be treated with blood thinners, or other drugs and procedures. It can be a silent killer, as blood clots form and travel without obvious symptoms.

a-1613754035 Feb 19, 2021 09:00 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

@837, I encourage you to do some research on vaccines and herd immunity. Also look into previous disease outbreaks (polio, measles, etc). Try to find some first hand accounts from those times too, so you can really get a feel for the scores of children and adults who suffered terribly and died from these illnesses, for centuries. Take a look at historical infant mortality rates and life expectancy before and after major vaccines have been adopted. Antivaxxers are a massive threat to all of us, and if you look at the data, even moreso to marginalized groups with low socioeconomic status. I totally get the knee-jerk reaction that comparing to Proud Boys is going to elicit, I hesitated to make the comparison, but it is THAT serious of an issue. Society should shun the antivax community just as they do hate groups.

a-1613755011 Feb 19, 2021 09:16 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

@900, I never said I agreed or support antivaxxers. They suck, they're dangerous, and it is serious especially now during a pandemic. But to compare them to a group of white supremacists who attempted to overthrow the government and kill government officials is comparing apples to oranges. I don't even think antivaxxers would qualify as a hate group, a cult maybe?

a-1613761749 Feb 19, 2021 11:09 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

@916, please read my comments again. There is no direct comparison to the hate group, that is not my point at all. I never said antivaxxers were a hate group. I am not comparing the two at face value, but the societal RESPONSE to the two. They are unequivocally different, totally agree they are apples and oranges. The point is that they are both evil and dangerous to society, and should be met with the same response: shunning and ridicule at best, and pointedly ignored/not given a platform at absolute minimum. People should be outraged by antivaxxers just as they are by hate groups.

RHS Feb 18, 2021 04:35 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

I agree with 3:39 PM> This report is propaganda and leads to the type of crap we witnessed on Jan 6. Please exorcise some discretion in what gets posted on this site. The 'anti vaxer" label is a step too respectful. These folks are basically the same as those who believe in witchcraft and the flat earth.

ParvoPup Feb 18, 2021 10:13 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

I'm going to withhold my opinion until I find out on Facebook whether she was exposed to a 5G signal or ever shook hands with Bill Gates who implanted a microchip into her palm. Could have been aliens too for all we know - I'm not saying it was aliens - but it might have been aliens. Jews in spaceships with fire starting lasers. Might have tried to started a wildfire to cover up their evil liberal New Green Deal. Maybe she had discovered the truth that Dr. Fauci is an automaton created by Antifa at Disney - he never blinks you know. How do you explain that.

ChillinGrillin Feb 18, 2021 10:48 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

You're on to something. I wore a Bernie hat once when I went with family to Disneyland and one of the Disney employees told me "nice hat." Antifa confirmed. Space Mountain is actually the laser control, if you've done your 8chan and Facebook research it all makes sense. Why are there no forest fires in Anaheim? Riddle me that, Gavin Newsom.

Rinconer Feb 19, 2021 07:59 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

She worked for Merck for a decade.
She knew what big pharma was up to.
She knew much more about the ingredients in vaccines than those who inject them.
She was the bravest woman I ever met.
She stood up to the biggest lobby on Earth.
She had recently had a full physical for insurance and was in very good health.
R.I.P. Brandy

a-1613756385 Feb 19, 2021 09:39 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

The incidence of thromboembolic disease (COD pulmonary embolism) in COVID_19 is quite high. Food for thought when considering...VACCINATION.

haskelslocal Feb 19, 2021 12:54 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

Here's a person that questioned the product she was selling. A product that was found to have caused 150k heart attacks and killed at least 60k people. She sold this drug. She walked into doctors' offices as a trained sales rep and said, "yes, this product works, this product is safe". Some of what she sold then went on to kill people. On her advice. Advice she was told was true and safe and good. She was trained in the chemical composition of that product and became an expert in the tactics necessary to convince doctors to administer it. Profits were off the charts. She got paid tremendously for it. Her life improved. Then a problem showed up. But she kept selling. She had to make quota in order to keep her job and maintain her improved standard of living. "It must be nothing", I'm sure they thought. A blip in statistics. But it got too big. There was an apparent and glaring defect missed in the product that was causing patients to die. She then had to absorb this. She wondered. She hurt. She then realized. This caused her to search and discover and react. Can you even imagine finding out that a program you participated in failed like this? Would you not experience massive sorrow, compassion and regret for your actions? Looking back, should someone have been there asking questions? Challenging decisions? Warning that mistakes were being made? Of course in retrospect. Did we learn? Have any other products found this same easy-to-ignore pathway? Does Oxy qualify as us having not learned anything? Are we missing something right now? It's sadly just too easy to apply labels and direct anger looking for answers. It's even easier for the offended to amplify and scream and promote to everyone that they were not wrong. The idea of being right in fear always searches for confirmation. All this while we stare mesmerized at TV commercials that simultaneously tell us a product is "Great!" while softly whispering about 72 "side effects" that include making our ears bleed. But don't worry. Everything's Going To Be Alright. So you can choose to belittle this woman or what she stood for. All her flaws and perhaps even her hyper-exaggerated response to what she knew. Or you can realize, if she were just partly right? Then there has to be good and societal benefit because of it. It's crazy, because some people think a cold coffee from Starbucks deserves a refund. Or that there needs to be a warning label and then a lawsuit if you choose to apply glue to your hair. Or that your car should save you at all costs from dying in a crash. Yet it's totally cool to just snap inject products backed by 35 years of legal indemnity giving you no recourse... Have a problem? Sorry. Not Our Fault... Have you ever been in a conference room making product manufacturing decisions? Some of the most difficult meetings you'll ever have are the ones where there's always "that" person who questions everything. Right when the team is ready to sign off and move forward, here we go again with the "what ifs". It's maddening. It hinders progress. It wastes time. You sometimes feel like you hate this person! But then the one in a million happens. They're right. It's here where you're given the Golden opportunity of a lifetime. You can recognize that without their questions, without the "what ifs", you may have lost everything. There'd be no company. You'd have no income. Life would change. Survival and existence depend on it. Never be afraid to question. Rest in Peace .

Ahlia Feb 19, 2021 01:52 PM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

Thank you HaskelsLocal @12:54 for your thoughtful, balanced and reasoned comment. It is refreshing to read this instead of the usual knee-jerk assumptions, judgements and, "It's not whether you win or lose...but how you shift the blame" :-(

JB86 Feb 21, 2021 12:28 AM
Death of Anti-Vaccine Activist Determined to be Natural Causes

I'll never know all the facts about why she did what she did, but it seems clear that she acted on her beliefs and convictions, which is to her credit. Personally, I think the anti-vaxers are wrong generally, but there is nothing wrong about questioning the assertions of drug makers, any more than any other consumer product maker, in the interest of public health and safety. Sometimes the skeptics are right.

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