‘Young Sheldon’ Delivers Tragic ‘Big Bang Theory’ Storyline Ahead of Series Finale

Spoilers ahead for Season 7, Episode 12 of Young Sheldon ("A New Home and a Traditional Texas Torture")

The storyline that fans have been dreading on Young Sheldon has finally happened. In Season 7, Episode 12, "A New Home and a Traditional Texas Torture," Lance Barber's George Sr. had a heart attack off-screen, with his two best friends telling his family the tragic news. The death comes just a week before the hour-long series finale, meaning that viewers knew that it would have to come sooner or later.

Since Young Sheldon premiered on CBS, viewers had been bracing themselves for the inevitable. In The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon admitted that his father died when he was 14. The series has been foreshadowing the inevitable, but it was hard to tell just when it would come and how. Executive producer Steve Holland told Deadline that the death was always planned to be off camera.

"We didn't want to witness that moment of his death," Holland said. "We always knew we were going to deal with his death this season, but we never thought about seeing it on camera. So, really, the discussion was when it would happen in the course of the last few episodes and how the family would get the news."

With Sheldon preparing to head to CalTech for grad school, George Sr.'s death could not have come at a worse timing, but that was always the plan. Add on the fact that he had gotten his dream job, coaching football at Houston's Rice University, it was all the more heartbreaking. The aftermath of his death is going to be an emotional roller coaster, one that fans will need tissues for. Since the death came in the final moments of the episode, all of the emotions will be felt in the series finale, and there's no telling how the Cooper family will handle such a big and sudden loss.

The Young Sheldon finale next week will see the return of Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik, their first on-screen appearance as adult Sheldon Cooper and Amy Farrah Fowler since the Big Bang finale in 2019. With a full hour to say goodbye to the Coopers, there will be a lot going on to wrap it up and set up the upcoming Georgie & Mandy spinoff. Fans will just have to tune in on Thursday, May 16 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS to see how Young Sheldon wraps up and how the Coopers will handle George Sr.'s death.