Crossing the Bar
When Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran told author Charles Brandt where, how, and when he put Hoffa down, he was near the point of death. Sheeran, who was suffering from cancer, said he had just enough time to square things with God. "During his final illness … he told me he had made his confession and received communion from a visiting priest … the following day, a week or so before he lost strength and stamina, Frank Sheeran asked me to pray with him, to say the Lord’s Prayer and and Hail Mary with him, which we did together."
Hugo Chavez, facing the prospect of personal extinction, temporarily forgot his Marxism and begged Jesus to grant him life. Richard "the Iceman" Kuklinski, who worked as a hitman for the Mafia and killed and sometimes tortured people for fun, also got the urge to confess in face of a terminal illness. Recently, a man confessed to murdering six-year-old Etan Patz in 1979 after learning that he was dying from cancer.
Pedro Hernandez, 51, confessed to police that he lured Patz to his death with the promise of a soda. He took police back to the basement of a Manhattan boedga and showed them where he claimed he strangled Patz ...
Kelly said detectives were drawn to Hernandez in recent days because Hernandez had told family members and friends as early as 1981 that he had "done a bad thing and killed a child in New York." ...
Hernandez was taken into custody at his residence in Maple Shade, N.J., on Wednesday morning where he lives with his wife and daughter. The apartment is rented by his wife, Rosemary Hernandez, who let her husband move in after he told her that he was dying of cancer.
Listverse has a catalog of deathbed confessions that range from admissions of undetected murder to plagiarization to the theft of a Stradivarius. One man, Christian Spurling, confessed that he had faked a photo "considered to be the best evidence of the existence of the Loch Ness Monster."