"Soldiers, when I give the command to fire, fire straight at my heart. Wait for the order. It will be my last to you. I protest against my condemnation. I have fought a hundred battles for France, and not one against her ... Soldiers, fire!"
Michel Ney, a military commander during the Napoleonic Wars, was being tried for treason and due to be executed. His lawyer tried to get him released by stating that Ney's birthplace had been annexed by Prussia, which meant that he couldn't be tried for treason. Ney straight up interrupted him (v. badass) and said, "I am French and I will remain French." (v. badass and v. French)
On December 6th, 1815, he was sentenced to execution by firing squad. He refused to wear a blindfold.
"Could you arrange to have my body hauled to the state line to be buried? I don't want to be found dead in Utah."
Sick Utah burn, bro. Swedish-American labor activist and member of the Industrial Workers of the World, Joe Hill was accused of the murder of a grocer named John G. Morrison and his son Arling. Hill had gone to a local doctor that night with a bullet wound in his left lung (like you do on Saturday night) caused by an argument over a woman. Because he had a pistol and a red bandana (which was witnessed on the gunmen), he was charged with murder and sentenced to death by firing squad.
Because Hill was foreign, a transient worker and a vocal union activist, it's believed that he was framed for a crime that he didn't commit. Prior to his execution, Hill wrote into the socialist newspaper, Appeal to Reason, and stated, "Owing to the prominence of Mr Morrison, there had to be a 'goat' [scapegoat] and the undersigned being, as they thought, a friendless tramp, a Swede, and worst of all, an IWW, had no right to live anyway, and was therefore duly selected to be 'the goat'."
We then imagine that he dropped the mic.
3. Eleanor Roosevelt
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Apparently, the nurse of the former first lady had just told her that she wouldn't die until she had fulfilled everything that God had wanted her to do.
"The war is at its height ”” wear my armor and beat my war drums. Do not announce my death."
Korean naval commander Yi Sun-sin had been shot by a single, deadly bullet during Battle of Noryang in 1598 when the Koreans had almost pushed the Japanese out of the Korean Peninsula. He didn't want his soldiers' morale to falter right before victory.
Margaret Sanger, a birth control activist and creator of various organizations that became the prototype for Planned Parenthood, advocated for sex education and birth control throughout her life, making her a pretty big target for hatred.
Anyone who has seen The Crucible knows that Giles Corey had more cajones than most. During the Salem Witch Trials, Corey and his wife were both accused of witchcraft. He refused to plead guilty or not guilty and was sentenced to a pressing so he would confess.
They loaded the weight on top of him and asked him if he would confess. His response?
"Hold up the train. Ammunition ship afire in harbor making for Pier 6 and will explode. Guess this will be my last message. Good-bye boys."
On December 6th, 1917, Patrick Vincent Coleman, a train dispatcher, saw the French munitions ship SS Mont-Blanc collide with the Norwegian ship SS Imo. The Mont-Blanc was filled to the brim with explosives; the crash caused a fire to begin on board and the ship to run aground. Coleman saw that the Mont-Blanc was incredibly close to a rail line and was going to explode into a million pieces, probably killing everyone in the vicinity.
Coleman telegraphed the above message to the overnight express train No. 10 that was carrying nearly 300 passengers. The train stayed halted in its station and all of its passengers were saved.
The explosion was so large that it decimated all the buildings in an 800 meter (2600 foot) radius, snapped trees in half with its pressure wave and killed around 2000 people, including Coleman.
14. Louise-Marie-Therese de Saint Maurice, Comtesse de Vercellis