Someone’s final words have a lot of importance to their loved ones. Sometimes, the last words uttered can be incredibly profound or beautiful. In other instances, someone’s last words can be completely meaningless! One Reddit user took to the forum to ask nurses what they have heard from patients as their last words, and the answers are both beautiful and incredibly scary, some even a little humorous. Take a look at some of the best answers, some of these will definitely make you feel a little uneasy, and some may even make you shed a tear.
I had a patient whose memory had been fading for years. It’s weird, right before a patient dies, sometimes they’ll sudden be doing a lot better. Anyway, he thought I was his late wife. I played along and just listened to him while he recalled his engagement, his wedding, his first childbirth, and a few other memories for me. At one point, he says “Oh! Irene, there you are! Sorry, you know my eyes aren’t as good as they used to be. Well, thank you for listening to an old man tell his stories. I hope you have great stories to tell one day too. I’m coming, Irene.” And then he passed. He was my first long-time patient.bedroompopprincess
I’m not crying, you’re crying
I had to tell my grandmother that dialysis would only give her another week or so to live and it was her choice to try or not. She was in and out of consciousness at that point and was in a clear state for the moment. She asked, “will I die?” I said, “yes.” She looked me in the eye and smiled just a little and said, “sometimes you gotta do what you don’t want to do.” She closed her eyes, squeezed my hand and slept until she passed a day later.
When things get hard, I always hear her say, “sometimes you gotta do what you don’t want to do.”-Silouan-
About 2 minutes before my grandma passed she had clarity (she’d suffered from severe dementia for years). She opened her eyes and said, “ I found Jack.” (My grandpa who’d died eight years prior). She said they were at a ball with their friends. Then she said, “I’ve gotta go, he asked me to dance.” Then she was goneChilibean127
My patient grabbed my arm, looked me in the eyes and said “please don’t let me die, I have a daughter.”macncheebs
I’m going home…
I worked as a nurse’s aide in a nursing home, for just 2 months, brand new. This gentleman was assigned to my caseload the entire time I had worked there, and was on Hospice the whole time, but had seemed to be doing well.
This night, I was working with him and he seemed off. I talked to him and explained what I was doing to care for him, but he just sounded so angry and confused. I was new to this, so I didn’t know quite what to do, so I pressed on. He got so freaked out, he took his oxygen tubing and tried to wrap it around my throat to strangle me. I got away, told the nurse, and was told that confusion and aggression were common when people were dying, he needed his care regardless.
I went to care for him again a few hours later, and he looked so docile, so defeated. His eyes filled with tears as he looked at me, and told me, “I’m real sorry for what I did earlier, ma’am, that’s not who I am. I’m so sorry.” I told him it was okay, and that I just wanted to make him comfortable. He thanked me, and said the line, “I’m going home.” He just kept repeating it, and sounded so urgent. “I’m going home, I’m going home, I’m going home.” I thought he was still confused…
… he passed away 1 1/2 hours later, right after my shift was over. I was the one to hear his last words. Upon learning that he passed away, I immediately thought of those last words. Sticks with me to this day. This was almost 12 years ago, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget.BurrSugar
Would you feel guilty?
“I’m going to die. I know I’m going to die.” He was going for very routine, fairly minor surgery. I held his hand and told him he would be fine. He died shortly after the procedure.JenQPublic
Many moons ago when I was a nursing student, a man in his 40s was lying on his deathbed from terminal cancer, his sobbing wife lying in bed next to him.
He looked at his wife, using the last bit of energy he had to gently wipe away her tears and stroke her cheek.
He took off his oxygen mask and said “don’t worry love, don’t be afraid. It’s just death” and passed shortly aftervikingnurse
Imagine being told this…
When I was 16 I worked as a dietary aide in a pretty nice nursing home. There was this one older gentleman that I became pretty good friends with. He always talked about WW2 and how he had lost so many guys in his company. Several days in a row I had noticed that he wasn’t coming down to the dining room for lunch or dinner. Went to his room to check on him and he wasn’t there. The nurse said he had a spell and fell out of his bed. His Dr wanted him to go to the hospital for observation. What had really happened is he had a stroke.
He got back to the nursing home about a week later and he really couldn’t remember anyone except for me. We talked the day after he got back and he told me he wasn’t doing good. He knew his time was coming to a close. Said it was time for him to pay for all the horrible things he had done when he was over in Europe. He wasn’t a religious man but he asked me where I thought he was going. I said to bed because it’s getting close to lights out. He said “No Joe (btw, my name is Mike) I mean up or down. Now I’m not a deeply religious person either, but I said, Martin that’s not for me to say.” He laughed and said “I know where I’m going. There’s only one place for people who have done what I’ve done… I’ve killed so many people Joe. Most of the time it didn’t matter who it was. We went into buildings just shooting. There’s only one place for me. It’s what I deserve.” I had absolutely nothing to respond with.Wangle1979
He quit because of it…
When I say that experience shook me to the core, I really mean it. That man’s face is burned into memory because of that conversation. He passed away the next day. His son said he kept asking where Joe was at. I quit that day. Working in a nursing home is a haunting place. Takes a special type of person to be able to watch people just die around you.Wangle1979
Former CNA in the dementia unit of an assisted living facility.
“My dad is on his way to pick me up now.”
She said that every time I checked on her until she died about a week after it started. While she was still mobile she would tidy her room and sit on the edge of her bed and just wait most of the day.sikeaux
Not a nurse, but my mom, uncle, and aunt all said that when their grandfather died, he kept telling people to kick out, “that bald headed bitch” out of the room. When they’d ask who, he’d say, “the one wearing the black shawl, she keeps knocking on the window.”
There was no one there obviously, they think he saw the reaper or something like that.UnderwaterPianos
Physical Therapist here. I treated a man in his nineties who was a DNR/DNI. At least once a week when I would go to his room to start our sessions he would cry and say “I didn’t want to kill the kids.” After speaking to his nurse, it was revealed that he had killed children in WW2.
He collapsed during a session and said “the kids are here to get me.” He died a few minutes later.
(*Edit: He wasn’t displaying fear when he verbalized this after he collapsed. He seemed at peace.)RCee7
My grandmother grasped the nurses hand and said “I think I’m going to die now”. The nurse was telling her no she was doing much better and would likely leave soon but my grandmother was gone before she could finish her sentence. She knew.KneeDragr
My brother was with a friend of his when the friend had a massive heart attack. While waiting for an ambulance the guy suddenly shouted “oh, it’s coming” then looked my brother dead in the eyes and said “it was nice to know you” and died less than 30 seconds later.anonymous_train
Knowing someone is afraid and not being able to help them must be incredibly difficult
Elderly gentleman. Worsening Congestive heart failure, incapacitated and his wife put him on hospice. He was comfort measures only. I was at the nurses station and I could hear him starting to gasp for air. As I walked into the room and he was struggling to breathe. I put my stethoscope up to his back but I already knew what was happening. His lungs were full of fluid. I sat him up in bed and he stared at me, eyes wide open, head tilted slightly back, facial expression was full blown panic. “I’m scared.” Immediately after he said the words his oxygen mask started filling up with pink/red frothy foam, running down his face and dripping onto his gown. He was dead within minutes, and all I could do was watch him. I will never forget his face.Thiek
I sat hospice with my best friend. She had breast cancer, and held it off for 8 years. At the very end, I was holding her hand for the last thing she said. “I don’t want to die.” She really didn’t. Wish she was still here.thin_white_dutchess
Had a patient screaming out, “They’re coming to get me!” and calling for help. He died shortly after.silntdreamer
“I’m only 18”
That sh*t never leaves you. She had skin cancer all over from a childhood event of her cousin pushing her into boiling water and eventually couldn’t even roll over without writhing in pain. It was the worst experience of my life. I shortly left inpatient nursing after that.UrethralTrauma9000
“You know what’s funny? Everyone says living is the hard part. No, dying is much much harder than living.”
Cancer patient in their 40s who was incredibly active and athletic up until their diagnosis. Said this to me as a student in my hospice clinical. Stuck with me ever since.nursehotmess
When my sister was on her death bed. She would point and ask who the people were in her room when no one else was there. Then I’d see her having conversations with these invisible people. I finally asked her what she was talking about and with who? She said she was talking to our grandfather ( he died 20 years prior). He told her he was there to help her cross over. She told him she wasn’t ready to go. He said to her that it has to be her decision and when she’s ready to take his hand he will guide her across.Dada2fish
Heard my patient talking to herself so I go in and check on her. She said she was talking to her deceased husband and said “you don’t see him? He’s sitting in the chair.”
Sent a chill down my spine, and then she coded a few minutes later. Shit had me spooked as a new nursesurgeric
Some last words are just heartbreaking…
I work in a nursing home and one stick out for me was “My kids left me here to die. May that not happen to you son”Hellkids2
A family friend had a very young niece that was dying from cancer. Her parents were there to comfort her in the final hours, and one of the last things she asked was “How do I die?”.zygomelonm
Physical therapy assistant here. As I was saying “bye see you tomorrow,” my patient told me “no you won’t I’ll be dead by tonight.” She died 3 hours later… she knew.brickhou5
Have you ever been with someone when they passed away? What were their final words? Let us know in the comments.
Attention: While many of these stories are interesting, and we would love to take their word for it, the content in this article was taken from an unverifiable source (i.e., a Reddit forum). As such, we cannot guarantee that these events truly happened in the way that they are described in the original source.