Thursday, November 3, 2022



Kurt Cobain

"It's better to burn out than to fade away.”

    - Final words, in his suicide note.

Kurt Cobain (1967 - 1994) was an American singer-songwriter, best-known as lead-guitarist and singer of the grunge-rock group Nirvana.

Cobain was quoting from Neil Young's 1979 song My My. Hey Hey:
My my, hey hey
Rock and roll is here to stay
It's better to burn out
Than to fade away
My my, hey hey.


Steve Jobs

“Oh wow.”

Jobs' final words before his death were "Oh wow", repeated three times after a long last look at his family.

He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003. His response was to ignore medical advice and to undergo a regime of alternative medical treatments. This path wasn't a successful one and he died at his Palo Alto home in October 2011.


King George V

“Bugger Bognor!”

Reputed to be the last words of King George V, being his response when his doctor told him he would soon be well and able to visit Bognor Regis again.

It has also been suggested that George V, a heavy smoker, in 1928 fell ill with a chest infection. He spent some time recuperating at Sir Arthur du Cros's house in the south-coast town of Bognor and, the story goes, when he was leaving the town he was petitioned to rename it Bognor Regis as a mark of his visit. He is supposed to have responded 'Bugger Bognor!"

It is unlikely they were his last words.

On the evening of 15 January 1936, the King took to his bedroom at Sandringham House complaining of a cold; he remained in the room until his death. He became gradually weaker, drifting in and out of consciousness. Prime Minister Baldwin later said:
... each time he became conscious it was some kind inquiry or kind observation of someone, some words of gratitude for kindness shown. But he did say to his secretary when he sent for him: "How is the Empire?" An unusual phrase in that form, and the secretary said: "All is well, sir, with the Empire", and the King gave him a smile and relapsed once more into unconsciousness.
By 20 January, he was close to death. His physicians, led by Lord Dawson of Penn, issued a bulletin with the words "The King's life is moving peacefully towards its close."

Dawson's private diary, unearthed after his death and made public in 1986, reveals that the King's last words, a mumbled "God damn you!", were addressed to his nurse, Catherine Black, when she gave him a sedative that night.

Dawson, who supported the "gentle growth of euthanasia", admitted in the diary that he ended the King's life:
At about 11 o'clock it was evident that the last stage might endure for many hours, unknown to the Patient but little comporting with that dignity and serenity which he so richly merited and which demanded a brief final scene. Hours of waiting just for the mechanical end when all that is really life has departed only exhausts the onlookers & keeps them so strained that they cannot avail themselves of the solace of thought, communion or prayer. I therefore decided to determine the end and injected (myself) morphia gr.3/4 [grains] and shortly afterwards cocaine gr.1 [grains] into the distended jugular vein ... In about 1/4 an hour – breathing quieter – appearance more placid – physical struggle gone.
Dawson wrote that he acted to preserve the King's dignity, to prevent further strain on the family, and so that the King's death at 11:55 pm could be announced in the morning edition of The Times newspaper rather than "less appropriate ... evening journals". Neither Queen Mary, who was intensely religious and might not have sanctioned euthanasia, nor the Prince of Wales was consulted. The royal family did not want the King to endure pain and suffering and did not want his life prolonged artificially but neither did they approve Dawson's actions. British Pathé announced the King's death the following day, in which he was described as "for each one of us, more than a King, a father of a great family".

At the procession to George's lying in state in Westminster Hall, the cross surmounting the Imperial State Crown atop George's coffin fell off and landed in the gutter as the cortège turned into New Palace Yard. The new king, George's eldest son Edward, saw it fall and wondered whether it was a bad omen for his new reign. Edward abdicated before the year was out, leaving Albert to ascend the throne as George VI.


John Lennon

“I'm shot. I’m shot.”

    - Repeated twice as he was shot outside his apartment building in New York.

The Beatles' huge fame in the 1960s drove them from performing on stage, where the audience's screams were so loud that they couldn't hear themselves play. Off stage, things were little different and no member of the group was able to appear in public without being mobbed.

Lennon was told by David Bowie that life might be easier for him in New York, where celebrities were more often left alone. In a BBC radio interview on 6th December 1980, Lennon made this remark about his move to the USA: "That's what finally made me stay here... Yes, you can walk on the street."

Two days later, and after firing his bodyguards, Lennon was shot in the street by Mark Chapman.

When the singer was leaving his apartment Chapman gave him an LP, which he duly signed (see photo above). When Lennon returned home later in the day, Chapman shot him four times in the back. Lennon staggered into the building, said "I'm shot" twice and collapsed.

Chapman pleaded guilty to murder and was sentenced to a prison term of 20 years to life with a stipulation that mental health treatment would be provided. In 2000, Chapman became eligible for parole, which has since been denied 12 times. Chapman's thirteenth parole hearing is scheduled for February 2024. Under New York state law, he is required to have a parole hearing every two years.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.