Two days before Christmas in 1985, 20-year-old James Vance and 18-year-old Raymond Belknap spent hours listening to heavy-metal music in Raymond’s room. They drank a twelve-pack of beer and smoked marijuana. They made a suicide pact, then went on a rampage, tearing at the room’s walls and smashing belongings. The only things not broken in the room were the turntable and the albums.

Near dusk, the two went to the playground of a local church in Sparks, Nevada, USA, with Raymond’s sawed-off 12-gauge shotgun. Raymond Belknap, seated on a merry-go-round, placed the end of the shotgun under his chin and pulled the trigger, killing himself. A few minutes later, James pointed the same gun at his chin and fired. Somehow, the blast missed his brain and he lived. 

After James Vance demolished his face with a sawed-off shotgun, he rode his bicycle around town shocking people with his grotesque disfigurement.

Plastic surgeons had been able to restore his ability to eat and breathe, but were not able to restore his smooth, youthful face. 

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