Paul Karason, the man made famous by his completely blue skin, has passed away today, from a heart attack, at the age of 62.
Karason never thought that using colloidal silver to treat his dermatitis would end up turning his skin blue. However, the liquid that is made by extracting silver from metal, did just that.
When Karason's skin became swollen, red, and itchy, he decided to self medicate himself with colloidal silver. He drank the liquid and rubber it on his skin. What he didn't realize was that he was slowly turning his skin a shade of blue.
"The change was so gradual that I didn't perceive it and other people around me likewise," said Karason. "It wasn't until a friend I hadn't seen in several months came by my parent's place to see me and he asked me 'what did you do?,'" Karason said in a previous interview.
Although he received fame from his skin color, Karason said that it was not easy being different. He even moved from Oregon to California in hopes of being accepted.
"I hope that they just accept me," he said, "And I think that will happen here. Where I was, I rather doubt it would have. This is different kind of community here," he said.
Karason gained the nickname of "Papa Smurf" years ago. His wife said in an interview: “That was a nickname he didn’t appreciate, depending on who said it. If it was a kid who ran up to him saying ‘Papa Smurf,’ it would put a smile on his face. But if it was an adult, well ….”
She also said that due to his heart condition he hadn't been able to work for several years and lead a life to himself. “He didn’t like to go out in public much -- only when he thought he needed to, like to go to the bank or to pick up tobacco,” she said.
Image via NDN