"Radioactive Boy Scout" dead at 39

Remember David Hahn, the "radioactive boy scout" who, as a teen in 1994, tried to build a nuclear reactor in his garden shed? Sadly, he died this fall. So far, the cause of death is unknown.

From Ars Technica:

Hahn's travails were most notably chronicled in a 1998 article in Harper's, which described his story in detail. (That article was later expanded into a book, The Radioactive Boy Scout.)

At the age of 17, Hahn wrote to numerous nuclear industry entities, including the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), posing as a high school science teacher. The Harper's article goes into some detail on his efforts.

In 2007, Hahn was arrested for stealing smoke detectors (which contain trace amounts of a radioactive element used to ionize smoke particles so they can be detected) from his apartment complex. His mugshot (above) reveals that Hahn had a lot of sores on his face that look like radiation poisoning.