YOLO: You only live once, they say, is literally incorrect. In fact, you live every day and die once. That’s it! Speaking of dying, we pray you don’t die soon, but you’ll eventually die, hopefully. What if you die, what would be your last words? For us, “We learned; therefore we knew.” Period! Dear friends, the island of Key West in Florida has this one of a kind cemetery with the most humorous tombstone last words.
Related media: Florida Keys Road Trip – What To Do In Key West!
Welcome To Key West Cemetery
Key West is a city island part of Florida Key archipelago in the United States; located at Florida’s southernmost point — roughly (145 kilometers) 90 miles north of Cuba. Its famous for it’s pastel-hued, conch-style houses, it’s a cruise-ship stop also accessible from the mainland via the Overseas Highway. It’s known more for its coral reefs — destinations for diving and snorkeling — than for it’s beaches.
In 1847, a devastating hurricane once destroyed the island’s original cemetery, Key West current cemetery was built to replace it. This new graveyard had a new touch of innovation; due to island high water table, most of the tombstones were erected high above the ground — quite similar to tombstones in New Orleans. The original cemetery was initially designed to host 15 thousand graves, today, it hosts a staggering 80 to 100 thousand graves, making it Key West’s most popular tourist destination.
YODO: You Only Die Once
The island’s unique past and heritage is well kept with the tombs of well-known residents like the local bar tender “Sloppy” Joe Russell, and millionaire shipping magnate “Bill Money” Curry, along with a section that’s dedicated to people who perished during the Cuban Revolution. Having a befitting burial is honorable, but Key West has an immeasurable heritage of special tombstones that seem to evoke a quirky sense of humor — tombstones with an epitaph of comedic touch.
According to tour guides, the most popular of these amusing tombstones is that of BP “Pearl” Roberts, a local hypochondriac (and quite possibly comedic genius) with her famous epitaph comically quips, “I Told You I Was Sick.” Another well-known epitaph from local comedian Georgio Aversa might spark your humor. His tombstone was memorialize with this comic line, “Jesus Christ, These People Are Horrible,” something he allegedly said over 20 times per day. But unfortunately, Georgio’s tomb sits 3 meters (10 feet) atop the mausoleum, so stretch your neck just a bit.
May Your “Words” Live Forever
There are even more witty epitaphs included in literary works in honor of an island which boasts of more writers per capita in the United States. These include “So Long and Thanks for All the Fish,” a line from Douglas Adams’ ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.’ Others are “I’m Just Resting My Eyes,” “I’ve Always Dreamed of Owning a Small Place in Key West,” “Devoted Fan of Singer Julio Iglesias,” and “If You’re Reading This, You Desperately Need A Hobby,” are few famous last words that’s a testament that residents of Key West find humor both during and after life.
A tour through the cemetery is only available on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 a.m (…) from the Historic Florida Keys Foundation. Reservations are required.
Do you have any last words? Let us know in comments.
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Written by: Nana Kwadwo, Tue, Jul 09, 2019.