Among the weird things I’ve collected over the years are the funny sayings that appear on tombstones. Some are funny; some are thought provoking; all are usually original.
“Here lies the body of Jonathon Blake. Stepped on the gas instead of the brake.”
Robert Allison: “He never killed a man who did not need killing.”
Merv Griffin’s is interesting: “I’ll be right back after this message.”
The great Mel Blanc’s says: “That’s all folks!”
Another read: “Faults I may have; being wrong is not one of them.”
Roger Dangerfield’s tombstone reads “There goes the neighborhood.”
Some rather obvious ones include “I knew this would happen” and another says “I told you I was sick.”
On the Mitchell stone it says simply: “Well this sucks.” “Here lies a man named Zeke, second fastest draw in Cripple Creek.”
Another gun fighter’s read: “Here lays Butch. We planted him raw. He was quick on the trigger but slow on the draw.”
In Schenectady, NY there’s a stone that reads: “He got a fish-bone in his throat and then he sang an angel note.”
On Rebecca Freeland’s tombstone it says: “1741… She drank good ale, good punch and wine and lived to the age of 99.”
In memory of Anna Hopewell: “Here lies the body of our Anna done to death by a banana. It wasn’t the fruit that laid her low, but the skin of the thing that made her go.”
On a coroner who hung himself: “He lived and died by suicide.”
On a lawyer in England: “Sir John Strange. Here lies an honest lawyer.
And that is Strange.”
On another attorney’s grave it reads: “The defense rests.”
Many people’s tombstones defined their lives and careers. Auctioneer Jeremiah Goodwin’s said simply: “Going, going, going… gone!”
A painter’s read: “A finished artist.
On a teacher Professor S. B. McCracken’s grave in Elkhart, Indiana, it reads: “School is out. Teacher has gone home.”
John Yeast’s stone in Ruidoso, New Mexico reads: “Here lies Johnny Yeast. Pardon me for not rising.”
A traveling salesman’s reads simply: “My trip has ended. Send my samples home.”
Spinster Sophie Jones said: “For her death held no terrors. She was born a maid and died a maid. No hits, no runs, and no heirs.”
In Death Valley, California: “Here lies the body of poor Aunt Charlotte. Born a virgin, died a harlot. For 16 years she kept her virginity, a damned long time for this vicinity.”
Another spinster had six women serve as her pallbearers. Her stone said simply: “The boys never took me out when I was alive; I’ll be damned if they’re taking me out now.”
Another old maid in North Carolina had this on her grave: “Returned — Unopened.”
In Stratham Churchyard, England is one from a bereaved husband: “Here lies Elizabeth, my wife for 47 years, and this is the first damn thing she has ever done to oblige me.”
In East Dalhousie Cemetery, Nova Scotia: “Here lies Ezekiel Aikle, age 102, the good die young.”
You have to wonder what an atheist might put on his grave. Here’s an idea from a stone in Thurmont, Maryland: “Here lies an atheist, all dressed up and no place to go.”
In Boston this stone says: “First a cough carried me off. Then a coffin they carried me off in.”
Then there are those monuments that serve as advertising: “Here lies Jane Smith, wife of Thomas Smith, Marble Cutter: This monument erected by her husband as a tribute to her memory. Monuments of this style are
And then there was the widow of Jonathan Thomson, who decided that she must carry on despite her husband’s absence. “Sacred to the remains of Jonathan Thompson, a pious Christian and affectionate husband. His disconsolate widow continues to carry on his grocery business at the old stand on Main Street: cheapest and best prices in town.”
In Chattanooga, Tennessee this stone says: “Here lies Ned. There is nothing more to be said — because we like to speak well of the dead.
‘I came into the world without my consent, and left in the same manner.’”
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Michael Aun is a syndicated columnist and writes a weekly column for this newspaper. To contact Michael Aun, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.