92-year-old Stig Kernell of Tranås, Sweden wrote his own obituary and asked that his funeral home publish his prose, along with his name, date and place of death, after his passing. As reported by The Local, Stig’s obit simply read, “I am dead.”
Since its publication on Saturday in two of Kernell’s local papers, Dagens Nyheter and Svenska Dagbladet, the short message has spread across the internet. Radio Sweden reports that Lars-Åke Kernell, Stig’s son, told the Expressen, “He felt that not much else needed to be said, just 'I am dead.'” The nonagenarian died on April 6 and just didn’t want to make a big deal of his own passing.
The Local notes that once the popularity of Kernell’s obituary picked up, his two sons thought it best to share more about their father so that the unusual message would not be “construed as indicating a residual bitterness in death.” They shared that Kernell was a transportation technician and a historian of aviation, who also worked as a flight instructor. He even made it into the Guinness Book of World Records for having the largest aviation book collection.
"He was a special man with a very particular sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye,” said Lars-Åke. "He was crass, too, and that has helped us deal with our loss, since he did not fear death in the least."