After the war, in a secret ceremony conducted in an underground chamber in Buckingham Palace normally reserved for human sacrifices, Maximillian was awarded the Victorian Cross and knighted, the only dog ever thus honored. The occasion was marred, however, when Maximillian urinated on the royal throne and was gutted on the spot.
Colonel Leonid X. Slonimsky: 75
Defector from the Soviet Union
KGB Colonel Leonid X. Slonimsky's defection to the West occurred at the height of the Cold War. Though initially doubted by some, his information proved itself invaluable in the high stakes shadowy world of intelligence operatives plying their deceptive arts as double, triple, and even quadruple agents.
A few nights ago, Colonel Slonimsky heard a strange sound which seemed to be passing directly overhead and stepped outside to take a look. While peering up into the night sky, he was struck and killed by plummeting debris from an obsolete Soviet satellite. Though some US officials suspect foul play due to the staggering statistical odds of such an event - at least one in a hundred thousand million - plus the surgical precision with which Slonimsky's jugular vein was sliced in two, it has nonetheless been officially ruled an accident.
Chester Hayden Pennyworth III: 88
"The Stingiest Man in the World," so christened thirty years running by the American League of Skinflints and Misers. Chester H. Pennyworth was known to be an incurable insomniac. He once disclosed to his only friend, one Milford Yokum, whose IQ of 40 made him the perfect confidant and the only man Pennyworth ever trusted, that the underlying cause of his sleeplessness was his anxiety as to what might transpire when he was not present to keep an eye on things and make sure no one was skimming funds, rounding off numbers, socializing on company time, using the telephone or Internet for personal matters, helping themselves to office supplies, or napping on the job.
Among the countless anecdotes enhancing it, the singular infamous event which sealed his reputation as "The Miser of Misers" was when he fired his Assistant Director Arliss Stubman, a loyal right-hand man for forty-two years, when the latter inadvertently absconded with a company pen which he put in his jacket pocket and forgot about. Pennyworth himself led the police search party which found the purloined pen at Stubman's residence and had him arrested for grand larceny.
When informed by the District Attorney that Stubman could only be charged with petty theft and would receive no jail time, Pennyworth flew into a rage and subsequently paid off the entire state legislature of Rhode Island to convene in emergency session and pass an act of congress that sent Stubman to prison for the rest of his life.
Many a restless night found Pennyworth spending hours counting through fresh bundles of dollars to make sure he had not been shorted. This became an obsession and in the end proved to be his undoing as he ultimately died from thousands of paper cuts and cumulative ink poisoning. (During his final few weeks he turned green.) According to his nephew, whom he had never seen before in his life, Pennyworth waved him to come closer and closer as if to pass on some final bit of wisdom until with his last breath he uttered his dying words: "Always keep the receipt."
No one attended his funeral.
Meego Noshow: 92
Last World War II Combatant Surrenders
So read the headlines in August of 2010 when a National Geographic explorer film team came face to face with Meego Noshow, who was nervously pointing his rile at them on the otherwise uninhabited Melanesian island of Boring-Boring. Fortunately, a Japanese botanist on the Nat Geo team was able to converse with Mr. Noshow and convince him the war had been over for 65 years. Meego Noshow stroked his five-foot beard and mulled it over.
"Hmm. Now that you mention it, it did seem a little too quiet."