Killing off a character isn't always enough of a statement. Having them die in an excruciating, horrific manner may not be enough to please the TV gods. There are plenty of ways TV series can twist the knife to make a character's demise extra tragic.
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One notorious method is to remind or reveal to the audience the departed character was expecting a child when he died. Now, he'll never get a chance to hold the baby, hear the first words, watch him or her grow -- Yeah, the tears are going to flow.
Unless the father in question deserved to kick the bucket, and the kid is better off. Such a variation has played out on TV before. However, for many of these TV dads, their kids, and audiences, it was tragic to witness these fathers losing their lives when they had so much to live for.
Derek Shepherd - Grey's Anatomy
Derek's death was sudden and unexpected. The shocks kept coming even after he took his last breath because the next episode revealed Meredith was pregnant with their third child -- a baby girl she would name Ellis.
Rhaegar Targaryen - Game of Thrones
Rhaegar loved his Lady Lyanna but had to leave her to face Robert Baratheon on the battlefield. He fought and lost. Sometime later Lyanna gave birth to a baby boy we would come to know as Jon Snow.
William Walker - Brothers & Sisters
The Walker patriarch was a womanizing adulterer. His affairs came to light after his death. One of them resulted in a child -- Ryan -- who didn't know his biological father but blames him for his mother's death.
Glenn Rhee - The Walking Dead
Sadly, it's only in Rick's fantasies where Glenn gets to hold baby Hershel as Nagan gruesomely murdered him while Maggie was pregnant.
Rance Burgess - Firefly
Burgess, not only was he the richest man on the planet, but he was also its biggest scumbag. Fortunately, the Serenity crew was able to prevent Rance and his men from kidnapping his soon to be born son. Then, right after she gave birth, the child's mother shot the s.o.b. No tears were shed over him.
Lance Sweets - Bones
Boothe was thrilled when he learned Sweets and Daisy were expecting a baby boy, but there wasn't time to celebrate since his name wasn't yet cleared. While Sweets was recovering evidence to exonerate Boothe, he was ambushed, beaten, and died from the wounds.
Jin-Soo Kwon - Lost
Sun was able to leave the island, but Jin was not. Back on the mainland, she gave birth to their daughter. She gave him up for dead, but then came the opportunity to go back and rescue him. Unfortunately, neither of them made it off the island because they died together in a sinking submarine.
Keith Scott - One Tree Hill
After years of unrequited love and bad timing, Keith and Karen finally got together. Dan, of course, had to ruin their happiness. He shot his brother in cold blood. Shortly thereafter, Karen found out she was pregnant.
Stephen Craig - St. Elsewhere
Dr. Mark Craig's son, Stephen, had been struggling with substance abuse for a long time. He was under the influence when he got into a car accident with his pregnant wife riding shotgun. Mark witnessed his son's autopsy, but Stephen's wife and daughter lived.
Michael Gregson - Downton Abbey
Michael loved Edith but couldn't marry her until he divorced his wife, which British law wouldn't permit but Germany would. He left and then completely disappeared. An agonizingly long time later, Edith found out he had been murdered -- devastating her and denying their daughter, Marigold, the chance to know her father.
Henry Blake - M*A*S*H
Radar announcing Henry Blake's plane was shot down over the Sea of Japan, and there were no survivor's will forever be remembered as one TV's most shocking moments. It gets sadder if you remember an earlier M*A*S*H episode where Henry was despairing over not being present for the birth of his son.
Jason Blossom - Riverdale
Jason seemed to adhere to every negative rich boy stereotype, but, surprisingly, when Polly Cooper said she was pregnant, he was all in. He planned on running away with his blossoming family to a cult (cause it's Riverdale). Unfortunately, his dad found out and murdered him first.
Kanan Jarus - Star Wars: Rebels
The Ghost crew was in a no-win situation. Kanan made the choice to sacrifice himself, so Hera, Ezra, and Sabine could live. Kanan and Hera's son was born afterward. It's safe to assume he knows, even though his father isn't living, "There is no death, there is the Force.