16 Manly Last Words

by Brett & Kate McKay on March 19, 2012 · 239 comments

in A Man's Life

We’ve always been intrigued by the last words of others. What did a person use his final mortal breaths to utter? What were they thinking about? Were they scared as they glimpsed the great beyond? Or did they brace up and stoically give up the ghost?

The following 16 men looked death in the eye and embraced whatever came next.

The 80-year-old Corey was accused of witchcraft during the 1692 Salem trials, but he refused to enter a plea to the court. As punishment, he was laid naked in a pit in a field, and slowly pressed to death over two days. Heavy rocks were gradually placed upon his chest–but he refused to cry out in pain, or enter a plea, and each time he was asked to do so, he simply replied: “More weight.”

During the War of 1812, Lawrence’s ship, the USS Chesapeake engaged in battle with the Royal Navy’s HMS Shannon. The captain was mortally wounded with small arms fire, but encouraged his men to keep up the fight. His orders became a popular Naval battle cry.

These were Childers’ last words to his firing squad before he was executed in 1922 during the Irish Civil War.

Thomas More was tried and executed for treason in 1535 because he wouldn’t support King Henry VIII’s marriage annulment and denied that the king was the head of the Church. Before being beheaded, he said his last words in reference to his beard. He positioned his beard on the executioner’s block so that it wouldn’t be harmed while he was beheaded.

On the 800-mile return trip of Robert Falcon Scott’s unsuccessful attempt to be the first to reach the South Pole, his team desperately slogged through freezing temperatures and blizzards, trying to stay on schedule and reach the supply depots along the way. Oates’ feet were badly frostbitten, and he was slowing down the rest of the men. He volunteered to be left behind, but his comrades refused to leave him. So finally he simply walked outside his tent and into a blizzard, telling the others, “I am just going outside. I may be some time.”

Hartley and his fellow band members continued to play as the Titanic sunk, in order to keep the passengers and crew calm. When the last lifeboats had been loaded, the musicians grabbed the railing on top the Grand Staircase’s deckhouse, and Hartley said this farewell to them just before a wave hit and washed him overboard.

Patton died in 1945, right before leaving Europe. He was in a car accident en route to a hunting excursion that left him paralyzed from the neck down. He lingered in a hospital in spinal traction for 12 days; twas not the kind of glorious death the lifetime soldier had imagined for himself.

Passionate about the idea of manned flight, Otto Lilienthal was known as the “Glider King” and made over 2,000 flights in glider models he designed himself. In 1896, his glider stalled, and he fell 56 ft, critically fracturing his spine. These were his last words to his brother before he succumbed to the injury.


{ 239 comments… read them below or add one }

201 JK March 21, 2013 at 12:54 pm

“It’s full of stars…”
Dave Bowman

202 JK March 21, 2013 at 1:54 pm

“Which would be worse…to live as a monster…or to die as a god man?”
Teddy Daniels

203 JK March 21, 2013 at 3:00 pm

Which would be worse?
To live as a Monster, or to die as a good man?
- Teddy Daniels

204 Brenton March 26, 2013 at 6:48 pm

I just read Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s autobiography, and loved his last words: “This is the end – for me the beginning of life.”

205 Tom Flowers April 16, 2013 at 11:00 am

“Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.” — Jesus Christ

206 Sean May 23, 2013 at 8:47 pm

My only regret is that I have only one life to give …

207 Yaseen M K Noorani August 29, 2013 at 3:45 pm

After regretting the fact that he couldn’t die on the battle field and instead was to die on his bed like a camel, Khalid ibn Waleed, one of the only two military generals never to lose a battle, said his last words as ‘May the eyes of the cowards never sleep!’

208 John W September 4, 2013 at 12:28 am

“Let us cross over the river and rest under the shade of the trees.”
LTG Thomas Jonathan (Stonewall) Jackson

209 Squeegee September 5, 2013 at 11:23 am

A quote from the American Civil war, I do not know the person who said it though no doubt someone will put it right.
“They couldn’t hit an elephant at that dist,,,,,,,”

210 Wilma September 13, 2013 at 4:57 am

I wish someone could tell me, who was the one to have witnessed the Titanic happening with the band’s goodbyes when the wave hit. I mean, who lived to tell the story?

211 Lane Spanner September 23, 2013 at 9:49 am

Squeegee, it was John Sedgwick

212 Jose October 5, 2013 at 7:32 am

Lord remember me when you come into your kingdom – condemned criminal on the cross

213 Erfan October 31, 2013 at 12:31 am

I know you are here to kill me. Shoot, coward, you are only going to kill a man.

Che Guevara

214 Jack November 1, 2013 at 5:29 pm

It disturbs me how people want to quote Che and Karl Marx. Instead let real men educate you on courage in the face of death:

“There is nothing proper about what you are doing, soldier, but do try to kill me properly.” -Cicero

“Be of good comfort brother; for we shall have a merry supper with the Lord this night!” -John Bradford

215 Chris November 12, 2013 at 12:26 pm

“Oh WOW”.
Steve Jobs Founder of Aple Computers.

216 Kevin December 23, 2013 at 4:32 pm

“Let’s Roll”

Todd Beamer, a passenger on the hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 before leading a counterinsurrection on the plane, saving a second attack on Washington, D.C.

217 Karel Jack March 21, 2014 at 1:17 pm

“Well I’ll be damned. This is funny”

Doc Holliday

218 Ljubo March 21, 2014 at 1:30 pm


The hero on the image above was a Partisan. He was shot by Nazis in 1942. and he laughed while they fired at him. A photographer managed to capture the moment.
Greatest laugh of all.

219 Jim Cooke March 21, 2014 at 1:30 pm

“I Still Live!”
- Daniel Webster

“The angels are waiting? Let them wait.”
- Ethan Allen

“Useless. Useless”
- John Wilkes Booth

220 Steve March 21, 2014 at 1:36 pm

“I drank what!?!?”

221 jdanter March 21, 2014 at 1:39 pm

They couldn’t hit an elephant at this distance.
General John Sedgwick, Union Commander in the U.S. Civil War, who was hit by sniper fire a few minutes after saying it

222 greg March 21, 2014 at 1:40 pm

“It is finished”-Jesus The Christ. his last moments on the cross when he died for our sins.

223 Cparkerson March 21, 2014 at 1:51 pm

The bastards tried to come over me last night. I guess they didn’t know I was a Marine. During the Battle of Tulagi, Private Ahrens was mortally wounded while single-handedly fighting back a group of Japanese soldiers attempting to infiltrate Allied lines. After his superior officer discovered Ahrens the next morning surrounded by dead Japanese troops, he whispered these words and died. and one more good one: I’m so bored with it all. Winston Churchill

224 Mike March 21, 2014 at 1:51 pm

- E.T.

225 Clark March 21, 2014 at 1:56 pm

“Let me go to my Father’s house.” – Pope John Paul II

226 Christopher March 21, 2014 at 2:28 pm

My favorite is Steve Jobs last words where “Ah wow”. Makes you think what did he see.

227 Anon March 21, 2014 at 3:25 pm

-Every Idiot Teen

228 M. Yost March 21, 2014 at 4:09 pm

St. Lawrence of Rome was condemned to death by a roman prefect. He was roasted on a giant gridiron. His last words were “I’m well done. Turn me over!”.

229 van Speyk March 21, 2014 at 5:14 pm

“Dan liever de lucht in!” – Jan van Speyk, which translates as, “(I’d) rather be blown up then” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_van_Speyk

230 Brian March 21, 2014 at 5:46 pm

“I’ll show you how an Italian dies!”
-Fabrizio Quattrocchi, refusing to wear a hood before being executed by insurgents in Iraq

231 jerry l March 21, 2014 at 8:29 pm

I just got killed…a Marine in Vietnam near the DMZ march 1968.

232 Alan Detrich March 23, 2014 at 12:20 am

“I’d rather be in Phily.”
Carl Lafong
AKA W.C. Fields

233 R March 23, 2014 at 4:26 pm

I am with you always, unto the end of the world

- Jesus

234 Robert March 23, 2014 at 6:40 pm

“I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”
- Jesus

“Behold, O monks, this is my advice to you. All component things in the world are changeable. They are not lasting. Work hard to gain your own salvation.”
- Siddharta Gautama (the Buddha)

235 Geneva Duck March 29, 2014 at 2:50 pm

“Oh my”–Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek: Generations.

I think Steve Jobs paraphrased him lol.

236 Clasqm March 30, 2014 at 8:49 am

“Help me up. An emperor should die on his feet.” – Vespasian

237 Brian Lockett April 1, 2014 at 12:15 am

“Surprise me.”

– Bob Hope, to his wife Dolores when asked where he wanted to be buried.

“It would really be more than the English could stand if another century began and I were still alive.”

– Oscar Wilde

“You will not see me alive at sunrise.”

– Nostradamus, to his secretary in Salon de Provence, France of 1566.

238 Brian Lockett April 1, 2014 at 12:26 am

Since someone brought up the TV show character Captain Kirk in humorous fashion, I guess I can pull out…


– Spike Spiegel, after getting shot.

239 Bob April 4, 2014 at 3:58 am

-Manfred von Richthofen AKA The Red Baron after crashing.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post:

Site Meter