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Origin of the phrase "old ... never die; they just ..."

Posted by Becker on January 11, 2002 at

I have long been wondering about the origin of the often-used phrase "old ... never die; they just".

In my school, there used to be an inscription saying "old teachers never die; they just lose their class".

Would anyone know the origin of this phrase ? Did anyone famous utter it for the first time ?

Thanks in advance for any help,

D. Becker