The Last Word

Forest Lawn Cemetery, Buffalo, New York

Nothing is as final as death.  The quote, “Dead men tell no lies” reminds us of the silence of the grave.  However, the dead can speak one last time in wills, diaries, letters, and epitaphs.  Though many epitaphs are chosen for the person after he or she has passed away, some people do choose their own.  Mel Blanc’s epitaph signs off with his signature Porky Pig closing at the end of the Looney Tunes cartoon, “That’s All Folks!”  One wonders if Mr. Banc was also making a larger statement on the afterlife.

In the case of Barry Becher, the advertising guru who pioneered late-night infomercials hawking Ginsu Knives who just recently died, his family has announced that his epitaph will read, “But wait, there’s more!”  This is his famous catch phrase that has been mimicked by nearly every infomercial now.  Again, this epitaph could be read as a double entendre referring to the hereafter.

Amaryllis Jones, who is buried in the Forest Lawn Cemetery in Buffalo, New York, also had the last word.  Her epitaph reads, “I told you I was sick.”  No mistaking that message; she wanted to remind those who she left behind that she was not complaining, this was not the typical ailment, that she was RIGHT, she was sick!  Or, she had a good sense of humor.

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