On 6 September 1901, President McKinley was meeting the public in Buffalo when an anarchist approached him and shot him twice in the abdomen. Horrified, people nearby grabbed the assassin and pinned him to the floor. McKinley slumped into a chair, looked up, and cried, "Don't let them hurt him." Then, gasping, he said to his secretary: "My wife -- be careful, Cortelyou, how you tell her -- oh, be careful!" As he was being carried to a hospital nearby, he sighed: "It must have been some poor misguided follow."*
On 14 September, when it was clear that the end was near, McKinley repeated some lines from his favourite hymn, "Nearer, my God, to Thee." He then embraced his wife, who exclaimed, "I want to go, too." "We are all going, " murmured McKinley. They were his last words.