“Today is August 15, 2013. Today is my 60th birthday. Today is the last day of my life. Today, I committed suicide. Today, is the first day this site is active, but it will be here for years to come.”

-Martin Manley

This is one of the most bizarre stories that I’ve ever come across. Martin Manley decided on June 11, 2012 that he would end his life on August 15, 2013…his 60th birthday. Why? Well, according to Manley simply because he wanted to. Besides setting up the website Manley had personalized letters sent out via FedEx to his family and friends. All scheduled to arrive at their destinations only hours after his death.

Manley starts off the website saying, “Before I get into the nuts and bolts of this site, I first must say to those whom I have a special bond with, please don’t think that I didn’t consider your feelings. I’m sorry… very sorry for the hurt and pain I will have caused by my actions. In all probability, I won’t be able to justify it to you – at least not today. Maybe someday you will come to understand… better. If not today, maybe someday you will be able to read what I’ve said and learn why. Maybe someday you will be able to forgive me. I love you!”

He then goes into the reasons he didn’t commit suicide. It’s really impossible to convey how much detail Manley goes into. He talks about how everyday for weeks he would put the empty gun to his head and pull the trigger. He wanted to “practice” to make sure he got it right when the time came.

So, the major reasons adults commit suicide – health, legal, financial, loss of loved ones, loneliness or depression… none of those issues are relevant to me and, for the most part of my life, have never been.

I decided I wanted to have one of the most organized good-byes in recorded history and I think I will be successful. The key has always been to do it before it becomes impossible to accomplish what I’m doing now – because then it’s too late and I would simply be along for the ride to the inevitable cliff. And, that has always been an unacceptable conclusion to my life. I became convinced that had I waited even another few years, I would never have been able to produce this site.

Martin may have been in a bit of denial however. It seems as if he was beginning to have some pretty serious memory issues. I would imagine that at the age of 60, the fear of full onset Alzheimer’s is a pretty scary thought. I’d be interested to know whether or not he had a family history of it. He briefly mentions that both of his parents died of old age.

I began seeing the problems that come with aging some time ago. I was sick of leaving the garage door open overnight. I was sick of forgetting to zip up when I put on my pants. I was sick of forgetting the names of my best friends. I was sick of going downstairs and having no idea why. I was sick of watching a movie, going to my account on IMDB to type up a review and realizing I’ve already seen it and, worse, already written a review! I was sick of having to dig through the trash to find an envelope that was sent to me so I could remember my own address – especially since I lived in the same place for the last nine years!

Manley created Martin Manley: My Life and Death and began documenting his life. Every aspect of his life. The site has over 30 categories such as My Religion, Two Marriages, First Two Loves and My IQ to name a few.

Of course, even that wasn’t as simple as it might seem – at least not to me. I owned two 22-gauge pistols, but both had mechanical problems. Even if they worked, would a 22 kill me? Very possibly not. So, that meant a higher caliber pistol. I was about to go out and buy one, but coincidentally, one fell into my lap about six weeks before I needed it. I took it out and practiced to make sure I had it figured out… the rest is history.

Really, if you’re interested go check out the site yourself. The whole thing is so strange that it’s hard to even imagine that it’s real. It’s difficult not to see this as some elaborate troll.

I also didn’t want anyone discovering my body or witnessing it who wasn’t trained for such a thing. I finally decided the best way to do it would be at 5AM on August 15, 2013 at the far southeast end of the parking lot at the Overland Park Police Station. If everything worked out right – and I’m sure it did, I called 911 at 5AM. I told them “I want to report a suicide at the south end of the parking lot of the Overland Park Police Station at 123rd and Metcalf. Bang.”

What do you think of what Manley did? How he chose to end his life? Please let us know in the comments.

Posted by James Poling

A socialist, tinkerer, thinker, question asker and all around curiosity seeker. If you'd like to reach me you can use the contact link above or email me at jamespoling [at] gmail [dot] com.


  1. Getting a “503 – Service Unavailable” error when visiting the site. I think that qualifies as irony.



    1. Yeah, I think the jerkholes at Yahoo pulled the site down. The man paid for five years. You leave it up.



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