Shay Bradley was an Irish veteran who decided that he wanted to make his family and friends laugh during his funeral. Bradley passed away in early October of 2019 at the age of 62.
About a year before his passing, Bradley made a recording of himself with the help of his son, Jonathan. He acted as if he was stuck inside the coffin and yelled to be let out. The audio even includes the sound of him banging on a wooden surface for added effect. In the second half of the recording, Bradley sings “I called to say goodbye” to his family.
The audio was played from a speaker in the ground during his funeral on October 12, 2019. His granddaughter, Chloe Kiernan, shared a video of the moment and it has since gone viral on social media with the hashtag #ShaysLastLaugh.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. Shay Bradley Wanted to Make Sure People Had a Good Laugh at His Funeral Because That’s What He Enjoyed Doing In Life
Shay Bradley’s son, Jonathan, described his father to the BBC as a man with a big personality who loved to make others laugh. Jonathan told the outlet that his father “wanted something special and for everyone to remember him as he was, so that everyone, especially my mother, did not leave the graveside sombre.”
Bradley came up with the idea for the recording about a year before he passed. Bradley shouted into his cellphone and hit his hand on a coffee table to make it appear as if he was yelling from inside a coffin.
2. Family & Friends Appeared Startled At the Beginning of the Video But Were All Cracking Up as the Graveside Message Played at the Funeral
The master plan that Shay Bradley had concocted played out exactly as he would have hoped. In the video, you can see Bradley’s family and friends standing around the open grave and clapping before the bagpipes began to play.
But about :24 seconds into the video, the bagpipes stopped and Bradley’s voice could be heard calling out, “Hello?” A few gasps can be heard, then a few chuckles, before everyone caught on to what was happening and started cracking up.
Bradley repeated “hello” several times and called, “Let me out!” He really caused the crowd to lose it laughing as he inserted some curse words. Bradley went on, “It’s f*cking dark in here! I can hear you! Is that the priest I can hear?” He also said, “I’m in the box, can you hear that?”
The camera is eventually pointed down into the grave where the coffin can be seen. At 1:09, Bradley was heard singing, “Hello again, hello. I just called to say goodbye.”
3. Bradley’s Children & Grandchildren Have Shared on Social Media That He Would Have Loved That the Graveside Video Has Gone Viral
Shay Bradley’s family appears to have gotten a lot of joy from his beyond-the-grave stunt. Bradley was survived by his wife, Susan, and four children. He also had 8 grandchildren, brothers, sisters, and multiple nieces and nephews.
His grandson, Ben Bradley, wrote on Twitter, “For anyone who hasn’t seen, My grandad was a one of a kind character and has left his legacy for the world to see❤️ #shayslastlaugh”
Granddaughter Chloe Kiernan, who first shared the video, thanked people for their well-wishes. She stated that her grandfather “would be loving this” and that he was a “true legend” who would “go down in history.”
Bradley’s daughter, Andrea, wrote “Love you forever Poppabear.” She told the BBC, “My dad wanted us to leave the cemetery laughing, and to celebrate his life. He would love to know how many people he made laugh! He was an amazing character.”
4. Shay Bradley Served His Country In the Armed Forces
Shay Bradley was a military veteran. He served in the Irish Defence Forces.
The Irish Defence Forces Veterans Association posted about Bradley’s passing and shared the video from his funeral. The group joked on Facebook that Bradley’s idea to prank his family from beyond the grave matched perfectly with the type of humor shared by veterans.
The group wrote, “what’s the difference between military humour and Civilian Humour…it’s simple it’s black. This video should say it all.”
5. Shay Bradley Loved to Cook & Shared Pictures Of His Creations On Instagram
Shay Bradley lived his life in Dublin, Ireland, according to his Facebook page. But he loved to cook dishes from all over the world. His Instagram page was dedicated to sharing pictures and details of his culinary creations.
Bradley wrote in the bio that he was gluten-free and ate a paleo diet. His last Instagram post, which was shared in November of 2018, depicted “Fresh jumbo prawns sauteed in magic dust and olive oil with freshly chopped garlic and chillies all ingredients combined with fresh pasta all mixed together with a half cup of virgin olive oil delicious.”
He also claimed to have created a buttered chicken dish, complete with nan bread and saffron basmati rice, that was “way better than any #indian #restaurant.” Bradley’s other meals included steak, ribs, sausages, garlic potatoes, eggs benedict, Salt and chili chicken, and seafood chowder.
Bradley also appears to have created his own line of special flavorings. He called it “Spiceman Shay” and referred to it as his “magic dust.” He sold the seasoning but the website appears to have been deactivated.