Evelyn McHale is probably the most famous Empire State Building suicide victim. The young and lovely Evelyn leaped from the 86th-floor observatory in 1947 and landed on the roof of a United Nations limousine parked on the street below.
Photographer Robert Wiles happened to be nearby and took a photograph of McHale just moments after her death. The result is a haunting image that famously appeared in Life and inspired a work by Andy Warhol.
The 23-year-old McHale somehow looked serene and lovely after plummeting 86 floors. She become known as "the most beautiful suicide."
Many struggled to understand why someone like Evelyn would jump. She was a young beauty who was planning her wedding. The sad answer is that depression can torment anyone. Evelyn left her coat and a suicide note on the observatory. Her note said, "I don't think I would make a good wife for anybody."