Who dies in The Outsiders and how?
The deaths of certain characters in The Outsiders have a profound and lasting impact on the surviving characters’ lives.
The loss of these characters affects how the story unfolds and shapes the lives of those remaining.
At the end of S.E. Hinton’s novel, “The Outsiders,” two beloved characters, Johnny and Dally, lose their lives. The reader is left wondering what happened to these characters and why their lives were cut short.
This post takes a closer look at the events leading up to their demise, analyzing the circumstances that caused their deaths.
Considering the devastating consequences of avoidable deaths, we can reflect on the valuable life lessons we can draw from them.
Who Dies In The Outsiders Book?
Three characters die in the book The Outsiders. Listed in order, they are the following:
- Bob Sheldon
- Johnny Cade
- Dallas Winston
How Does Bob Die In The Outsiders?
Johnny Cade killed Bob Sheldon in self-defense. Bob Sheldon is a Soc who jumped Johnny Cade previously. The memory of the initial attack haunts Johnny, and he’s terrified of being jumped again, so he starts carrying a switchblade.
When Johnny and Ponyboy get a chance to speak with Cherry and Marcia, two girls from the rival gang, they come across Cherry’s boyfriend, Bob, who was one of those responsible for attacking Johnny months before.
Eventually, Ponyboy decides to flee home, and Johnny follows him. While they make their way through a park, Bob and some other Socs stumbled upon Ponyboy and Johnny, prompting Bob to hold Ponyboy’s head underwater to drown him. Johnny intervened with his switchblade to save Ponyboy from the attack and avoid a second beating.
Throughout the novel, many characters face life-and-death situations, leaving us with a heartbreaking ending. Bob’s death sets off a chain reaction that leads to Johnny’s heroic death.
How Does Johnny Die In The Outsiders?
Johnny Cade dies in a hospital after heroically rescuing children from a blazing church. Ponyboy and Johnny had been hiding in the building when it ignited, with Johnny believing that he may have caused the fire by smoking inside. His selfless act drove him into the inferno to save the kids.
The significance of Johnny’s death is that Ponyboy turns his life around. But Johnny’s death destroyed Dally.
“Johnny was the only thing Dally loved. And now Johnny was gone.”
~S.E. Hinton, The Outsiders, about Dally (Character: Ponyboy as narrator), Chapter 10, Page 152
Johnny’s death profoundly impacts the remaining characters in The Outsiders. Ponyboy is devastated as he is Johnny’s closest friend. He is wracked with guilt, feeling responsible for Johnny’s death and believing he could have done more to save him.
Ponyboy’s guilt is compounded when he discovers that Johnny had written him a letter before his death, thanking Ponyboy for being a true friend.
Just before he dies in the hospital, Johnny utters, “Stay gold, Ponyboy.” Ponyboy finally understands what his friend meant when he reads the note Johnny left behind.
In the letter, Johnny refers to a Robert Frost poem that Ponyboy had read to him while they were hiding out in the church. Johnny interprets Frost as saying, “you’re gold when you’re a kid…When you’re a kid, everything’s new, dawn.”
With his words, Johnny encourages Ponyboy to safeguard his childlike innocence and hold onto his appreciation of everyday beauty, especially sunsets, which Johnny calls “gold.” Thus, Johnny’s last words to Ponyboy remind him to stay young and find wonder in the world around him.
Johnny’s death also brings the Greasers and the Socs together as Ponyboy and Cherry share a moment of understanding, realizing they all have something in common – the pain of loss. Johnny’s death also impels the remaining Greasers to become closer and more supportive of each other.
In the end, Johnny’s death brings hope and understanding and reminds the characters that life is short, fragile, and precious. His death ultimately brings about positive changes in the lives of Ponyboy and his brothers, Darry and Sodapop.
Dally’s pain and anguish of losing Johnny are unparalleled. He feels a deep responsibility for being unable to protect himself and is consumed with sorrow and guilt.
His emotions manifest in explosive rage, showing how much Johnny means to him. His despair is palpable, and everyone around him can feel it.
How Does Dally Die In The Outsiders?
On Page 154, The police shoot Dally dead when he attempted to threaten them with an unloaded gun. The tragedy came after Johnny’s death in hospital, which left Dally so devastated that he chose to flee from Ponyboy and rob a grocery store.
Ponyboy could tell that Dally had wanted to die, and it was clear from the “look of grim triumph on his face” when he passed away. Dally always got what he wanted in the end.
What chapter does Dally die in?
Dally dies in chapter 10, page 154 of The Outsiders.
Did Darry Die in The Outsiders?
No, Darry does not die in The Outsiders book.
Does Two-Bit Die in The Outsiders?
No, Two-Bit does not die in The Outsiders book.
Does Sodapop Die in The Outsiders?
No, Sodapop does not die in The Outsiders book.
Who Killed Bob In The Outsiders?
Johnny Cade killed Bob in The Outsiders, protecting Ponyboy.
Who dies in the rumble in The Outsiders?
No one dies in the rumble. Bob dies earlier in a fight between the Socs and the Greasers. Johnny dies from his injuries from saving the kids from the burning church. And Dally is killed by the police after he pulls a gun.