Santos Dumont the flying Virgin

Image from the HBO series about Santos Dumont. At the forum, actor João Pedro Zappa who plays the Brazilian

Image from the HBO series about Santos Dumont. At the forum, actor João Pedro Zappa who plays the Brazilian aviator

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The HBO mini-series reveals secrets from the history of the aviation pioneer who revolutionized flight, but couldn't cope with his sexuality and committed suicide after 20 years of depression.

Alberto Santos Dumont had been staying for a few days in Room 152 of the Grand Hôtel de la Plage, on Pitangueiras beach, in Guarujá, to be healed of the melancholy that hit him with seaside walks. In the adjoining room, 151, was his nephew, Jorge Dumont Villares, who accompanied him. As it was Winter, the hotel was almost empty. Jorge left suddenly and warned the staff to let him know if anything unusual happened to his uncle. After noon on July 23, the waiters noticed that the celebrated guest had not come for lunch or answered the door.

The nephew authorized the break-in. In the bathroom, the cops came across the corpse. He had hung himself with his own tie - or the robe belt, according to another version. The investigation did not go on. The forged death certificate indicated that the cause of death was "cardiac arrest". He could thus be buried with state honors.

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