A death row inmate who survived a botched execution attempt in 2018 has died of natural causes.

Doyle Hamm has been fighting an aggressive lymphoma since 2014 and was scheduled to be executed even though his diagnosis was terminal.

The 64-year-old was sentenced to death in 1987, and served more than 33 years in prison for the murder of Patrick Cunningham, who was shot in the head while working the overnight shift at Anderson’s Motel in Cullman, Alabama.

The state of Alabama tried to execute Hamm with a lethal injection but he survived after the state spent two-and-a-half hours attempting to find a vein, his lawyer, Bernard Harcourt, said at the time.

Hamm likely sustained internal damage at the time, and the state may have punctured his bladder, an artery, or both, Harcourt said, though this was never proved.

Officials struggled to find a vein to administer the lethal injection (


Years of drug abuse and his cancer treatment made his veins hard to locate and puncture (



Later that year the state of Alabama agreed to not set any more execution dates for Hamm, according to a press release from Harcourt.

The scheduled execution date came after months of legal battles revolving around whether Hamm’s veins were able to handle the IV required for the lethal drugs, reports AL.com.

Harcourt argued that Hamm’s veins had become nearly impossible to access after years of intravenous drug use and Hamm’s treatment of lymphatic cancer.

Harcourt also said Hamm received really excellent medical care and attention from Dr. Connie Uzel, an oncologist in Mobile who treated Hamm. “She was an extraordinary doctor who he was really grateful for,” Harcourt said.