13 Most Heartbreaking ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season Finale Moments (PHOTOS)

Grey's Anatomy

13 Most Heartbreaking ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season Finale Moments (PHOTOS)

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13 Most Heartbreaking ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season Finale Moments (PHOTOS)

The Grey's Anatomy writers make every episode of the ABC hit emotional, but they really bring out the big guns for the season finales.

Click through the gallery above to see 13 tragically sad Grey’s Anatomy scenes from the season-cappers we’ve seen so far.

13 Most Heartbreaking ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season Finale Moments (PHOTOS)
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13. Rebecca pleads with Alex

Rebecca pleads with Alex Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

“You named me Ava, and I was more me as Ava than I’ll ever be as Rebecca,” Alex’s former Jane Doe patient tells him in the Season 3 finale.

“I have every reason to go back to my life, and I will, unless you… Alex, I’m asking you for a reason to stay here.” (He doesn’t, and he regrets not doing so.)

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13. Rebecca pleads with Alex

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“You named me Ava, and I was more me as Ava than I’ll ever be as Rebecca,” Alex’s former Jane Doe patient tells him in the Season 3 finale.

“I have every reason to go back to my life, and I will, unless you… Alex, I’m asking you for a reason to stay here.” (He doesn’t, and he regrets not doing so.)

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12. Richard says he’s not a bad man

Richard says he’s not a bad man Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

“I’m not a bad man,” Richard tells Meredith in the Season 4 finale, trying to make amends after his years-long affair (and eventual breakup) with Meredith’s mother.

“I know I’m the villain of your story, but I’m not a bad man.”

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12. Richard says he’s not a bad man

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“I’m not a bad man,” Richard tells Meredith in the Season 4 finale, trying to make amends after his years-long affair (and eventual breakup) with Meredith’s mother.

“I know I’m the villain of your story, but I’m not a bad man.”

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11. Cristina leaves

Cristina leaves Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

The only moments from the Season 10 finale that make the transcontinental loss of Meredith’s “person” any easier is their last dance-it-out session and Cristina’s pep talk to Mer..

“Don’t let what [Derek] wants eclipse what you need,” she says. “He’s not the sun. You are.”

11. Cristina leaves

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The only moments from the Season 10 finale that make the transcontinental loss of Meredith’s “person” any easier is their last dance-it-out session and Cristina’s pep talk to Mer..

“Don’t let what [Derek] wants eclipse what you need,” she says. “He’s not the sun. You are.”

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10. Charles dies

Charles dies Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

Charles Percy wasn’t the most well-known or even well-liked of the surgeons, but his death in the Season 6 finale mass shooting was tragic nevertheless — because Bailey could have saved him if the elevators hadn’t been turned off.

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10. Charles dies

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Charles Percy wasn’t the most well-known or even well-liked of the surgeons, but his death in the Season 6 finale mass shooting was tragic nevertheless — because Bailey could have saved him if the elevators hadn’t been turned off.

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9. Amelia hears Derek’s last voicemail

Amelia hears Derek’s last voicemail Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

In the Season 11 finale, a few episodes after Derek’s death, Meredith gives both Amelia and us viewers a treat: a voicemail Derek left that fateful day in which he proclaims his commitment to her and to their family. (Amelia included, presumably!)

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9. Amelia hears Derek’s last voicemail

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In the Season 11 finale, a few episodes after Derek’s death, Meredith gives both Amelia and us viewers a treat: a voicemail Derek left that fateful day in which he proclaims his commitment to her and to their family. (Amelia included, presumably!)

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8. Lexie pretends to be Izzie

Lexie pretends to be Izzie Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

After Gary Clark shoots Alex in the Season 6 finale, he nearly bleeds out and becomes, calling out for his ex-wife, Izzie, instead of his current girlfriend, Lexie.

Lexie therefore sublimates her own feelings for him and pretends to be Izzie to comfort him.

8. Lexie pretends to be Izzie

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After Gary Clark shoots Alex in the Season 6 finale, he nearly bleeds out and becomes, calling out for his ex-wife, Izzie, instead of his current girlfriend, Lexie.

Lexie therefore sublimates her own feelings for him and pretends to be Izzie to comfort him.

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7. Cristina realizes Burke left

Cristina realizes Burke left Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

In the Season 3 finale, Cristina seems torn between relief and heartbreak when she returns home from the canceled wedding to find Burke’s prized possessions gone. “I’m… I’m free,” she gasps. “Damn it. Damn it.”

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7. Cristina realizes Burke left

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In the Season 3 finale, Cristina seems torn between relief and heartbreak when she returns home from the canceled wedding to find Burke’s prized possessions gone. “I’m… I’m free,” she gasps. “Damn it. Damn it.”

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6. Izzie flatlines

Izzie flatlines Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

When Derek removes the last of Izzie’s tumors in the Season 5 finale, she and Alex finally seem to have a shot at a happily-ever-after, until she falls unconscious in his arms.

The docs ignore her do-not-resuscitate order and eventually save her, as we see in the Season 6 premiere, but we don’t think we’ve ever seen Alex so emotional.

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6. Izzie flatlines

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When Derek removes the last of Izzie’s tumors in the Season 5 finale, she and Alex finally seem to have a shot at a happily-ever-after, until she falls unconscious in his arms.

The docs ignore her do-not-resuscitate order and eventually save her, as we see in the Season 6 premiere, but we don’t think we’ve ever seen Alex so emotional.

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5. Arizona cheats on Callie

Arizona cheats on Callie Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

Undoing all the positive steps she has made in her relationship with Callie, Arizona chooses to feel whole again by hooking up with visiting doc Lauren Boswell in the stormy Season 9 finale.

5. Arizona cheats on Callie

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Undoing all the positive steps she has made in her relationship with Callie, Arizona chooses to feel whole again by hooking up with visiting doc Lauren Boswell in the stormy Season 9 finale.

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4. Meredith trades her life for Derek’s

Meredith trades her life for Derek’s Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

When shooter Gary Clark demands Derek be left to die in the Season 6 finale — out of revenge for Derek, Lexie, and Richard making him a widower — Meredith pleads with him to let Derek live.

“If you want to hurt them the way that you hurt, shoot me,” she says. “I’m your eye-for-an-eye.”

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4. Meredith trades her life for Derek’s

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When shooter Gary Clark demands Derek be left to die in the Season 6 finale — out of revenge for Derek, Lexie, and Richard making him a widower — Meredith pleads with him to let Derek live.

“If you want to hurt them the way that you hurt, shoot me,” she says. “I’m your eye-for-an-eye.”

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3. The John Doe patient is George

The John Doe patient is George Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

No sooner does Meredith finish extolling the bravery of her barely-conscious patient — for throwing a stranger out of the way of a bus and getting hit by the bus himself — then he traces “007” on her hand.

After a beat, she realizes the significance: 007 was George’s unflattering nickname as a surgical intern with a “license to kill.”

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3. The John Doe patient is George

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No sooner does Meredith finish extolling the bravery of her barely-conscious patient — for throwing a stranger out of the way of a bus and getting hit by the bus himself — then he traces “007” on her hand.

After a beat, she realizes the significance: 007 was George’s unflattering nickname as a surgical intern with a “license to kill.”

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2. Lexie dies

Lexie dies Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

Mortally wounded in the Season 8-ending plane crash, Lexie listens as Mark describes their happy future together, with Mark asserting that they’re meant to be. Lexie repeats “Meant to be”... and then expires.

2. Lexie dies

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Mortally wounded in the Season 8-ending plane crash, Lexie listens as Mark describes their happy future together, with Mark asserting that they’re meant to be. Lexie repeats “Meant to be”... and then expires.

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1. Denny dies

Denny dies Credit: ABC via Home of the Nutty screencap

After all of Izzie’s heroics in saving Denny’s life, he dies alone in his hospital bed in the Season 2 finale, felled by a blood clot.

Izzie realizes she would have been there by his side — or even there to save his life — had she not spent so much time picking out the perfect dress to impress him at the hospital prom.

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1. Denny dies

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After all of Izzie’s heroics in saving Denny’s life, he dies alone in his hospital bed in the Season 2 finale, felled by a blood clot.

Izzie realizes she would have been there by his side — or even there to save his life — had she not spent so much time picking out the perfect dress to impress him at the hospital prom.

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The Grey's Anatomy writers make every episode of the ABC hit emotional, but they really bring out the big guns for the season finales.

Click through the gallery above to see 13 tragically sad Grey’s Anatomy scenes from the season-cappers we’ve seen so far.