He was a really quiet guy, just like me. He and my grandmother went visiting a friend in their neighborhood when they were both in their late 70s. During the visit, while my grandmother and the neighbor were having a conversation and my grandfather sat quietly listening to them, he died without uttering a sound and without moving. He left as quietly as he always was in life. It was just perfect. I wouldn’t mind going like that.
This next reader points to another abrupt death by excerpting a 1995 obituary for Mitt Romney’s father:
George W. Romney, an automobile executive who became a three-term Governor of Michigan, a Republican Presidential candidate and a member of the Nixon Cabinet, died yesterday at his home in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., a Detroit suburb. He was 88. His wife, Lenore, whom he married in 1931, found him collapsed yesterday morning on the treadmill in the exercise room of their home, their son G. Scott Romney said. The office of the Oakland County Medical Examiner issued a statement saying only that Mr. Romney had died of natural causes.
Suddenly. Of natural causes. At a ripe old age. After having lived an accomplished and fulfilling life. And having felt well enough that morning to have gotten on a treadmill.
Another reader prefers a more serene exit: “Having been present for three deaths, I think slipping away in the arms of Morpheus has a lot to recommend it.” (Morpheus, the Greek god of dreams, is the root of the word morphine.) This next reader prefers another drug, psilocybin: “I’d want to die shoeless, in the sun and on the grass, consumed by magic mushrooms.”
This reader doesn’t want to see it coming:
In my sleep. Or … freezing to death. I hear that’s kind of like going to sleep.
That’s true according to this personal account from Brian Phillips, a pilot who got stranded in the freezing cold while tracking the Iditarod: