The Walking Dead follows a group of survivors living in a post-apocalyptic world, which is full of flesh eating zombies. The story focuses on Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), who was the sheriff’s deputy before the outbreak. He awakens from a coma after the zombie outbreak has already began. He goes in search of family and loved ones. He eventually finds his wife, Lori Grimes (Sarah Wayne Callies), and his young son, Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs). Rick becomes the de facto leader of a small group of survivors. The group includes at various points, Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal), Andrea (Laurie Holden), Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun), Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride), Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus), Michonne (Danai Gurira), Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker), Tyreese (Chad L. Coleman), Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan), Beth Greene (Emily Kinney), Hershel Greene (Scott Wilson), Rosita Espinosa (Christian Serratos), Abraham Ford (Michael Cudlitz) and many more. They struggle to survive as there is little food, transportation is difficult, safe shelter is hard to find and they must deal with each other. They also encounter many villains, such as, The Governor (David Morrissey) and Gareth (Andrew J. West). Of course, there is always the threat of those slow moving, but deadly zombies.
The Walking Dead airs on the AMC network. The series is based on the comic book series of the same name, created by Robert Kirkman. Frank Darabont created the TV series and left in 2011. The show premiered on October 31, 2010, and is currently in its fifth season. The series is critically acclaimed and has done very well commercially. The series is known for the fact that absolutely any character can die. Nobody is safe. The series has many deaths of both humans and zombies. Regardless if they are humans or zombies, the deaths can be heart breaking, tragic and gut wrenching. Since the series is still on the air, its very possible and likely that there will be many more gut wrenching deaths. Here is a look at 16 of the most gut wrenching deaths in The Walking Dead, so far. ATTENTION: SPOILERS AHEAD.
16 The Zombies
The series is known for its violence, brutality and gore. The series has featured some of the most tragic and gut wrenching deaths of humans. However, it’s important to point out those other tragic and gut wrenching deaths. The death’s that are often forgotten about, the zombies. Zombies are people too…er…undead people. Just because they’re undead doesn’t mean that they’re not people…wait…maybe it does. They are also referred to as walkers, biters, roamers and geeks. Their deaths are very violent, gruesome and can sometimes be sad, such as, the young girl zombie, Summer, that Rick kills at the very beginning of the series. The only way to stop a walker is to shoot it in the head or bash its skull in. This one goes out to all the zombies. Never forget the zombies that lost their lives or now shuffle around very slowly.
15 Jacqui And Dr. Edwin Jenner (Season 1)
Jacqui and Dr. Jenner appeared in season 1. Jacqui was one of the members of the first group of survivors. She was the only member of her family to survive. She joined the group of survivors and was very helpful around camp. Dr. Edwin Jenner was a doctor for the Center for Disease Control (C.D.C). The group met him when they arrived at the C.D.C. Initially, he did not want to let them in but decided to, out of compassion. He reveals a video of a test subject and how the infection occurs. He also reveals that the test subject was his wife and there is no cure. He traps all of them in the C.D.C., which is set to explode. He lets the survivors go after they plead with him. However, Edwin and Jacqui decided to stay. Opting for an immediate death, as opposed to the painful and agonizing deaths/becoming a zombie like the others.
14 Jim (Season 1)
Jim was a part of the original group of survivors. He was a part of the series in season 1. He was a mechanic before the outbreak and would often apply those skills around camp. Prior to meeting the survivors, he was with his family during the early stages of the zombie outbreak. He barley survived but zombies devoured his family. A walker bites him when he kills the same walkers that bite Amy. However, he does not reveal that he is bitten until the next day. He convinces the rest of the group to leave him tied to a tree. His fate is unknown; presumably he turned into a walker. He may have been killed as a walker or may still be out there slowly shuffling around.
13 Theodore Douglas a.k.a T-Dog (Season 1-3)
Death: "Killer Within"
T-Dog was a part of the original group of survivors. He was a part of the series from season 1 to season 3. He was reliable, a hard worker and contributed to the group. His death was very gut wrenching and sad. However, his death was also one of the most heroic in the series. He sacrifices his own life to help others, specifically Carol. While at the prison, a walker bites him but he and Carol managed to escape. In his dying moments, T-Dog chose to find away to save Carol, as opposed to his own life. He is bitten a second time when he charges at a group of walkers, in an attempt to let Carol escape. He sacrifices himself so that Carol can get away.
12 Amy (Season 1)
Amy was one of the first members of the original group of survivors. She was a part of the series for season 1. She was 12 years younger then her older sister, Andrea. Amy was somewhat resentful of her older sister. Due to the age difference, Amy was very young when Andrea left home and she rarely visited her little sister. They were on a road trip together when the zombie apocalypse first broke out. The outbreak helps strengthen their relationship and they were growing closer. Amy was hopeful, kept the peace and would help around the camp. In one of the first truly gut wrenching and sad deaths; a walker attacks Amy the day before her birthday. She dies in the arms of her sister, who later kills the zombie version of Amy.
11 Bob Stookey (Season 4-5)
Death: Four Walls and a Roof"
Bob Stookey was a former army medic. By the time he joins Rick’s group, he had already been through difficult, painful and tragic times. He joins the group and the series in season 4 and died in season 5. He was a part of several groups where he was the only survivor. He begins to become very close with Sasha. He is bitten by a walker but tells nobody. Later, he sneaks out to die alone but is captured by the group from Terminus. His death is tragic, sad and heartbreaking. It’s also kind of gross. The Terminus, a group of cannibals, eats Bob’s leg but the joke is on them because he was infected with the virus. His group saves him but it’s too late. Sasha tries to put him out of his misery but can’t. Instead, Tyreese steps in and does the killing for Sasha.
10 Sophia Peletier (Season 1-2)
Death: "Pretty Much Dead Already"
Sophia was the daughter of Ed and Carol Peletier. She was a part of the show from season 1 to season 2. She was shy and was usually seen with her friend, Carl Grimes. Her father was abusive towards her mother and it’s also possible he was abusive towards her. In the episode, “What Lies Ahead”, two walkers chase Sophia into the woods. Rick tells her to hide while he distracts the walkers. However, when he goes back, Sophia is gone. She is missing for several episodes, the survivors and her mother search for her frantically. Later, the group arrives and sets up camp at Hershel Greene’s farm and property. Hershel unlocks a barn of walkers that he was trying to keep safe. In one of the most gut wrenching and tragic moments, the final walker to emerge is Sophia. Carol tries to comfort her daughter but is held back because she no longer her daughter. Rick reluctantly shoots and kills the zombie Sophia.
9 Merle Dixon (Season 1-3)
Death: "This Sorrowful Life"
Merle Dixon was the older brother of Daryl Dixon. Merle was violent, racist and had a bad temper. He was a part of the show from season 1 to season 3. In the first season, he is left handcuffed to a rooftop by Rick, after he brutally beats up T-Dog. Rick and Daryl return later to rescue Merle but all they find is his hand. His fate is unknown for several seasons until he turns up as the right hand man to the evil Governor (ironically, he has only one hand). He commits many heinous crimes while working for The Governor. His death was gut wrenching, tragic and heartbreaking. Initially, Merle makes it a bit difficult to like him and the character. However, he becomes one of the most popular in the series. Despite his mean attitude, he loved his brother deeply. Later, his character softens and seeks redemption for his crimes. He sacrifices his life to help the others and his brother. The Governor kills Merle who then turns into a zombie. With tears in his eyes, Daryl is forced to kill the zombie Merle.
8 Dale Horvath (Season 1-2)
Death: "Judge, Jury and Executioner"
Dale Horvath was one of the main characters from season 1 to season 2. He was one of the first main characters to die. His death was gut wrenching, tragic and a surprise. He wife died of cancer before he could take her on a road trip in the RV he had just purchased. He is travelling alone when the outbreak occurs. Dale is wise and often was the voice of reason. He is against the idea of killing a man named Randall. He goes on a patrol of the grounds. At this point, a walker attacks and bites him. Daryl puts him out of his misery. The actor, Jeffery DeMunn asked the writers to kill off his character after series creator Frank Darabont left the show.
7 Andrea (Season 1-3)
Death: "Welcome to the Tombs"
Andrea was one of the main characters and was a part of the original group of survivors. She was a part of the series from season 1 to season 3. She was on a road trip with her sister at the onset of the outbreak. She was forced to kill the zombie version of her sister, Amy. Andrea was smart, could handle a gun and was helpful around the camp. She was split from the group and met Michonne. Later, she would enter into a sexual relationship with The Governor. However, she began to realize the true evil within the Governor. The Governor allows a walker to bite Milton and traps Andrea in a room with him. Milton bites her in the neck but she is able to kill the zombie Milton. In a very tragic, heartbreaking and sad moment, Andrea commits suicide before she can turn.
6 Tyreese (Season 3-5)
Death: "What Happened and What's Going On?"
Tyreese was the older brother of Sasha. He was reliable, a good worker and did everything he could to help provide for the group. The character joined the series in season 3 and died in season 5. He struggled with the violence and brutality that surrounded him. His death was heartbreaking, sad and tragic. Early in the episode, a walker bites him. The rest of the episode he is hallucinating and slowly becoming a zombie/dying. He sees the sprits of those that have died, such as, Mika and Lizzie. Rick and Michonne amputate his arm in an attempt to save him. However, its too late and the infection as already spread. Michonne kills Tyreese before he can become a walker.
5 Shane Walsh (Season 1-2)
Death: "Better Angels"
Shane Walsh was one of the main characters in the series from season 1 to season 2. Prior to the apocalypse, Shane was Rick Grimes' partner at the King County Sheriff’s Department. He took care of Lori and Carl at the onset of the outbreak. He was the leader of the group until Rick showed up. He was Rick’s second in command, but he would have preferred to be the leader. When they thought Rick had died, Shane formed an intimate relationship with Lori and became close with Carl. He was angry when Lori ended the relationship with him. Initially, he was a good guy that was somewhat unstable. However, over time he became more and more of an antagonist. He even committed murders and wanted to murder Rick. He was obsessed with Lori, who was pregnant. Despite turning into an antagonist, his character was loved by many fans. Shane lures Rick into the woods with the intention to kill him. However, Rick is able to kill Shane first, somewhat reluctantly. Carl shoots the zombie Shane in the head.
4 Beth Greene (Season 2-5)
Beth was the daughter of Hershel Greene. Her character joined the series in season 2 and died in season 5. Initially, she was very shy and spoke rarely. However, her faith and will grew stronger following her mother’s death and later even stronger, with her father’s death. Often, she would entertain the group with a beautiful song. She is abducted and her fate is unknown for some time. Later, it’s revealed that she was at Grady Memorial Hospital and was forced to stay there by police officer Dawn Lerner. Daryl and the others come to rescue her from the hospital. She is about to be set free when she stabs Dawn in the shoulder who immediately shoots Beth in the head. Her death is tragic and gut wrenching on many different levels. She has been separated from her sister Maggie for so long. Maggie believes she is going to be reunited with her sister but then breaks down when she sees Daryl walking with the dead, lifeless body of Beth in his arms.
3 Lizzie and Mika Samuels (Season 4)
Death: "The Grove"
Lizzie (age 12) and Mika (age 10) were two young girls that were a part of the survivors group at the prison. They were a part of the series in season 4. Despite being younger, Mika was much more rational and calm. Lizzie seemed to be mentally unstable. She believed the walkers to be her friends and that she could hear them. She also has no problem killing rabbits, mice or even people but cannot bring herself to kill the undead. Both of their deaths are two of the most tragic, gut wrenching and heartbreaking. They’re also two of the darkest and most twisted deaths in the series. Lizzie murders her own sister Mika, in order to prove that zombie’s aren't all bad. Carol kills Lizzie in order to protect others, such as baby Judith.
2 Hershel Greene (Season 2-4)
Death: "Too Far Gone"
Hershel Greene was one of the main characters from season 2 to season 4. He is a veterinarian and owns a farm. He is the father of Maggie and Beth Greene. He is a kind man with a very big heart. He is compassionate, logical and level headed. He is often the voice of reason. He was also one of the few survivors to still have a strong belief in god and held onto his faith. However, he knows how to handle a gun and will defend his friends and family. He is the first person to survive being bitten by having his leg amputated. In one of the most gruesome, tragic and truly gut wrenching moments, The Governor brutally and violently decapitates Hershel while his friends and loved ones watch. Later, Michonne finds the zombie Hershel’s head. She puts the zombie out of its misery.
1 Lori Grimes (Season 1-3)
Death: "Killer Within"
Lori Grimes was a main character on the series from season 1 to season 3. She was the wife of Rick Grimes and mother to Carl and Judith. Thinking that Rick was dead, she became very close with Rick’s best friend, Shane, at the onset of the outbreak. She eventually began a sexual relationship with Shane. When Rick showed up alive, she was both happy and felt guilt. Later, she finds out she’s pregnant but is not certain if the father is Rick or Shane. Her and Rick grew distant from each other following Shane’s death. Her death was one of the most gut wrenching, sad and tragic ones in the series. It’s also one of the most surprising and shocking. The survivors are on the run from walkers, who have overrun the prison. During their escape, Lori goes into labor. Maggie is forced to deliver the baby without the proper equipment and the danger of zombies right around the corner. Due to complications, either the baby will die or Lori will. Lori makes Maggie and Carl choose the life of the baby over hers. She dies and in a heartbreaking, intense and gut wrenching moment, Carl, with tears in his eye, shoots her in the head before she can turn into a walker.
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