On Jan. 12, 1967, James Bedford, a psychology professor at Glendale College in California who had just died of cancer, took his first step toward coming back to life. On that day, the professor became the first person ever frozen in cryonic suspension, embedded in liquid nitrogen at minus-321 degrees Fahrenheit. Bedford was neither the first, nor the last, to attempt the impossible — beating death at its own game, according to Michael Shermer’s book “Heavens on Earth: The Scientific Search for the Afterlife, Immortality, and Utopia” (Henry Holt), out Jan. 9. With scientific advancements exploding at an exponential pace, some believe the Grim Reaper could soon be out of business. Here are three ways scientists are striving for immortality that are getting so close to success that they would amaze even Bedford — if he ever wakes up.