September 8, 2005

Apparent Hunter S. Thompson suicide note published

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Renegade author Hunter S. Thompson
lamented the onset of old age and his physical limits, then
concluded, "Relax -- This won't hurt," in an apparent suicide
note published on Thursday by Rolling Stone magazine, his
literary springboard.

The scrawled words -- perhaps the last he ever committed to
paper -- were written on February 16, four days before the
self-described "gonzo" journalist shot himself to death at his
secluded home near Aspen, Colorado, the magazine said.

Thompson was 67, and at the time friends and family said he
had been in pain from hip replacement surgery, back surgery and
a recently broken leg. Those close to him said Thompson had
contemplated suicide for years.

The content of the note was first revealed by Thompson's
biographer and literary executor, Douglas Brinkley, in a
Rolling Stone article recounting the August 20 memorial service
in which Thompson's cremated remains were blasted out of a

Brinkley said Thompson had left the farewell note for his
wife, Anita, but "Hunter was really talking to himself" as he
sank into the despair of what was for him gloomiest time of
year -- the month of February.

The brief message, scrawled in black marker and titled
"Football Season Is Over" (an apparent reference to the end of
the NFL season he avidly followed as fan), reads as follows:

"No More Games. No More bombs. No More Walking. No More
Fun. No More Swimming. 67. That is 17 years past 50. 17 more
than I needed or wanted. Boring. I am always bitchy. No Fun --
for anybody. 67. You are getting Greedy. Act your old age.
Relax -- This won't hurt."

At the bottom of the page, Brinkley said, Thompson drew a
"happy heart," the kind found on Valentine's Day cards.

The article did not say how or when the note was

It was through his work for Rolling Stone that Thompson
developed his presence as a counterculture literary figure who
turned his drug- and alcohol-fueled clashes with authority into
a central theme of his writing.

The most famous of his books, "Fear and Loathing in Las
Vegas," was adapted from a two-part article written for the
magazine in 1971.