Fans have determined nine of the most heartbreaking moments from The Walking Dead, including the deaths of such major fan-favorites as Hershel (Scott Wilson), Glenn (Steven Yeun) and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs).
The Walking Dead made the selections after polling subscribers to its official YouTube channel, asking, "What moments have been the most emotional for you to watch?" Submissions included Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) having to kill best friend Shane (Jon Bernthal), the last stand of Shiva, the pet tiger who died protecting King Ezekiel (Khary Payton), the death of Andrea's (Laurie Holden) younger sister Amy (Emma Bell), and the discovery of Whisperer leader Alpha's (Samantha Morton) murdered victims in the penultimate episode of Season 9.
Negan Breaks Rick
In the Season 7 premiere, "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be," a newly introduced Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) forced Rick into submission after executing Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) and Glenn. Because Rick continued to resist Negan's subjugation of his people, the Savior leader threatened to kill Carl unless Rick cut off his son's hand.
Carl was only spared the injury when Negan told a blubbering Rick, "You answer to me. You provide for me. You belong to me."
Daryl Puts Down Merle
Daryl (Norman Reedus) was forced to put down older brother Merle (Michael Rooker) in Season 3 episode "This Sorrowful Life," where a renegade Merle sacrificed himself in an attempt to kill the Governor (David Morrissey). Killed by gunshot and left to reanimate as a walker, the zombified Merle was discovered and put to rest by his heartbroken little brother.
The Governor Kills Hershel
When the one-eyed villain waged war against Rick and his people, who were holed up in a prison near the Governor's Woodbury, Hershel and Michonne (Danai Gurira) were captured and held hostage in Season 4 episode "Too Far Gone." Despite Rick's efforts to broker peace between the prison and Woodbury, the Governor called Rick a "liar" before using Michonne's katana to decapitate Hershel in front of horrified daughters Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and Beth (Emily Kinney).
"Where Is She?"
When scorned prisoner Andrew (Markice Moore) returned to the prison after being left to die by Rick, his revenge caused T-Dog (IronE Singleton) to be killed by invading walkers in Season 3 episode "Killer Within." A pregnant Lori Grimes (Sarah Wayne Callies), forced into early labor by the stress, died giving birth to daughter Judith and was put down by Carl. When Carl emerged with Maggie and the newborn Judith, Rick collapsed when mourning the loss of his estranged wife.
Look at the Flowers
In Season 4 episode "The Grove," Carol (Melissa McBride) was left to execute the disturbed Lizzie (Brighton Sharbino) after she killed little sister Mika (Kyla Kenedy) in the wake of the Governor's attack on the prison that separated the survivors. Taking the girl out into a clearing, Carol told Lizzie to "look at the flowers" before shooting her in the back of the head.
"Maggie, I'll Find You"
Glenn was bludgeoned to death with Negan's barbwire-wrapped baseball bat Lucille in "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be," a vicious murder witnessed by Glenn's pregnant wife Maggie. After suffering severe brain damage, Glenn told Maggie with his last words: "I'll find you."
A Father's Job
In Season 8 episode "Honor," Carl said his goodbyes to his parents — Rick and Michonne — before taking his own life to prevent fully succumbing to an incurable walker bite he sustained episodes earlier in "The King, the Widow, and Rick." Reflecting on the episode during a recent convention appearance, Riggs said filming Carl's death episode was "so depressing."
In Season 2 episode "Pretty Much Dead Already," when the survivors resided at the Greene family farm, the group was devastated when Carol's missing daughter Sophia (Madison Lintz) emerged as a walker. Rick stepped forward to put down Sophia's reanimated form while Lori, shielding Carl, told her son: "Don't watch."
In Season 9 episode "What Comes After," a gravely wounded Rick made a stand against a walker horde on a bridge connecting the survivors' allied communities. Experiencing hallucinations by blood loss, Rick was driven by the need to reunite with his family.
When Michonne, Daryl, Carol, Maggie, and other survivors raced to rescue Rick, he said, "Found them." He then pulled the trigger of his Colt Python and fired at a pile of dynamite, exploding the bridge and saving his family's lives, seemingly at the cost of his own.
Believed dead, Rick was secretly rescued by Anne (Pollyanna McIntosh) when flown away aboard a helicopter belonging to CRM. That story will continue in the Walking Dead feature film trilogy.