People Share Their Best 'You Either Die The Hero Or Live Long Enough To Become The Villain' Experiences
Photo by Terry Tran on Unsplash

"You either die the hero or live long enough to become the villain."

Though not necessarily a universal truth, all of us have witnessed unfortunate moments in our lives where we've seen this saying become a reality.

Be it seeing our favorite public figures take a serious fall from grace, someone we know and admire eventually disappointing us in a devastating manner, or even seeing ourselves turn into someone we promised we'd never become.


One Redditor was curious to hear people's examples of this saying coming to light, either from a personal experience or seeing it happen to a well-known, public figure, leading them to ask:

"Who is your example of 'you either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain'?"

Jim Jones

"Jim Jones."

"He originally stood up for civil rights when it was really unpopular."

"Was hospitalized and accidentally placed in the black ward."

"When the doctors found out, they tried to move him, but he refused."

"Then he became a cult leader and used his power and influence to end the lives of a thousand people."- Crvsby

Earning a position of power

"Working in restaurant kitchens."

"You either burn out young, or become the boss that everyone hates."

"There's exceptions, but that's the rule."- grandpas_old_crow

Henry Heimlich

"Henry Heimlich, inventor of the Heimlich Maneuver."

"Made up a bunch of untested uses for it, treating people having asthma attacks, and drowning victims were the two I remember that he publicly talked up."

"Later, he funded an experiment that involved injecting people with Malaria to see if it would treat other conditions.

"The experiment was found to be unethical by American review boards, so he conducted them in Ethiopia." - User Deleted

Philippe Petain

"Philippe Petain."

"In WW1 he led the French to victory at Verdun, one of the worst battles in human history."

"In WW2, after France was beaten, Petain was the head of state of Vichy France."

"Guy went from the Lion of Verdun to the biggest Nazi collaborator in France."- arthuranymoredonuts

Our bodies

"Every organ until it gets cancer."- SuperBaconjam

Conor McGregor

"Conor McGregor."

"He had the whole country behind him here in Ireland at one point bar people who thought combat sport is grotesque."

"He was witty, original, backing himself up and having a Hollywood like rise to stardom."

"Now he's someone who the whole country is ashamed of, goes punching old men, clearly sleeps around on his wife while she's at home with the kids, just a walking caricature of himself."

"He didn't listen to his own advice."

"Get in."

"Get rich."

"Get out."- StephenPigot2020

Turning into our parents

"My dad used to annoy me by calling my Pokemon cards 'Pokey-Mans'."

"Now my kids have them and I do the same thing and it annoys the sh*t out of them."

"Thanks for the (Pokeyman) gold!"- rumpel4skinOU

Benedict Arnold

"Benedict Arnold."

"Almost died during the revolutionary way, if I recall correctly, and if he had he would have been remembered a huge hero, and a martyr."

"Instead he lived and changed sides, and is remembered only for his being a traitor."- uniqueperson22

Be it someone we knew quite intimately, or someone we admired from a far, it is always heartbreaking to see someone evolve from someone we love, to someone we utterly hate.

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