The Pandavas gathered around Bhishma on his bed of arrows, waiting for the moment when he would choose to die.
They had known this old warrior all their lives, and he had been like a father to them: Bhishma, the son of Shantanu and of the goddess Ganga. Bhishma, who had no sons of his own.
They waited with him.
Finally, he breathed his last.
Yudhishthira lifted Bhishma up off the bed of arrows and cremated his body on the bank of the Ganges. The goddess then arose from the river and escorted her son's soul into heaven.