I guess when you look all together most common cause of death was from fire weapon, it was a war after all, but on the other side if we talk about civilians in town then i believe in the beginning people died mostly from shelling and firing, then from all kind of diseases and malnutrition.
During a daytime people get killed from snipers on regular basis, i mean if you really have to go out because of something, there were something called snipers alleys, so if you knew where to walk, run actually i guess you had some chance to survive (from snipers).
There was of course open parts on streets or between houses where you had to run and take chances, sometimes just hoped in chance that guy on the other side with sniper had lunch break or something like that.
People get killed from snipers on many ways, woman sneak to river to get some things to wash or to collect water, or just guy who goes out on open to check what is going on.
Guy who i knew got killed on one of the usual ways at that time. First sniper wounded man in legs and make him laying and cant move, guy is calling for help, crying, then someone came to help. The sniper wounded first guy who came to help him, then wounded second guy who came to help them, then nobody else came to help them, then sniper killed them all.
Usually “good” snipers did not killed people with first shots, because nobody gonna come to help dead man. I watch that kind of situations in movies, I ve heard later that is “normal” sniper strategy, but to see that in reality is something different, especially with civilians, it is haunting.
It is real horror to hear grown up man screaming in pain, crying, asking for mercy, some people could not stand that. On the other side, one of my neighbors, chronic alcholic once walked 500 meters openly on street during day time, he was completely drunk, sniper did not shot him, not sure why, but we have sentence here that “God saves fools ” so i guess that is the reason. He survived everything, died few years ago, from alcohol intoxication.
Shelling was other story, it was a constant thing, there was time of peace, time without shelling, but periods like that did not last more than few hours, all kinds of thing fallen on city all the time, i read much later somewhere that in worst period of that SHTF city were devastated with around 500 shells daily. People were torn apart, dismembered with cuttings, sometimes people laterally disappeared in some kind of mist or red fog and small pieces if they were directly hit, I ve seen that.
Sometimes i remember that period like constant rumbling sound and smell of burnt things and flesh. I think nobody was safe anywhere, 125 mm shell from tank hit my house in second month, and just took away big part of second floor, i realize then that some nylon heavy duty tarps can have great use in SHTF situation. That kind of destruction completely change mans opinion of ordinary things, same was first time when people fired on me, when I heard hissing sound of bullets close to my head, it completely changed my priorities in life.
( I ve read a book long time ago, not sure about title or writer, I think it was about soldier in WW2, he was listening about reasons for war, plans and strategies, he thought about good thing to fight for… things like that, but when he s get in his first fight with enemy he realizes whole truth and he shouted: Oh my God, they are trying to kill me! I felt like that guy, when you realize that, lot of things changes)
In the worst period you could see lot of dead people on streets, people that were not killed from snipers, or shelling, people killed from beatings or knife wounds.
In the summer time was bad, we have summer temperatures sometimes 45 C her, so stench was bad, people buried their deads close to houses, usually in nearest park, or any clear ground without too much ceremonial things, sometimes even in mass graves.
Usually all that graves were exhumated after war ended and then properly buried. People died on all kind of different ways, my relative went out one night alone (yes mistake) to find some things and never come back, he just disappeared, nobody knows anything, but we have river in city, 3-4 meters deep, and very fast so…
Killed and robbed from somebody probably. It was some number of missing people, just missing, nobody knows how, where. They are still missing.
Air bombardments were rare, but that was one of the scariest thing in my life, I remember maybe 10-15 air attacks, all of them during the night. Few attacks were helicopters attacks with rockets , I think it was MI6 or MI8 helicopters, scary. But real horror and in the same time somehow funny situation was airplanes attack with bombs, you see I think they used some old planes (maybe propelled engines, not jets) and I think they just dropped bombs from them.
So imagine, it was a pitch dark, I was going somewhere to get something to eat, and then i heard sound of airplanes, very distant and far sound, but still that sound gets your gut to vibrate (it is a different sound from big “MRE S “ planes) i looked at dark sky trying to realize what a hell? Next thing what i heard is sharp and high whiz or zing of something falling from the sky, then horror started, as far as I remember time from start of that sound to explosion was 5-6 seconds, not sure. In that time I am manically and desperately trying to hide somewhere, and there is actually nowhere to hide too much. All around me are pretty much ruins.
Few seconds can last like few hours. When that thing exploded your whole stomach is just going up from the power. Felling was horrific, you never know where bomb is going to fall, explosion from that bomb usually destroys whole house, completely. Who ever get killed in big explosions, from bombs or shelling, usually stayed buried there, in ruins.
I did not see too much violent deaths prior SHTF so some things just struck me, some things can just move you from normal reality in some other way of thinking. When I see man shot in the head from close distant, from rifle, man that was hard, I was paralyzed.
First thing that came on my mind was that man is so fragile thing, so easy to kill. Funny maybe but all thinking in that situations come to lower scale, like to simple level thinking, very fast you just forget all reasons and higher causes, you just switch to some other mode, a kind of primal mode, hard to explain.