Background A recently developing pneumonia caused by SARS-CoV-2 was originated in Wuhan, China, and has quickly spread across the world. We reported the clinical characteristics of 82 death cases with COVID-19 in a single center. Methods Clinical data on 82 death cases laboratory-confirmed as SARS-CoV-2 infection were obtained from a Wuhan local hospital′s electronic medical records according to previously designed standardized data collection forms. Findings All patients were local residents of Wuhan, and the great proportion of them were diagnosed as severe illness when admitted. Most of the death cases were male (65.9%). More than half of dead patients were older than 60 years (80.5%) and the median age was 72.5 years. The bulk of death cases had comorbidity (76.8%), including hypertension (56.1%), heart disease (20.7%), diabetes (18.3%), cerebrovascular disease (12.2%), and cancer (7.3%). Respiratory failure remained the leading cause of death (69.5%), following by sepsis syndrome/MOF (28.0%), cardiac failure (14.6%), hemorrhage (6.1%), and renal failure (3.7%). Furthermore, respiratory, cardiac, hemorrhage, hepatic, and renal damage were found in 100%, 89%, 80.5%, 78.0%, and 31.7% of patients, respectively. On the admission, lymphopenia (89.2%), neutrophilia (74.3%), and thrombocytopenia (24.3%) were usually observed. Most patients had a high neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio of >5 (94.5%), high systemic immune-inflammation index of >500 (89.2%), increased C-reactive protein level (100%), lactate dehydrogenase (93.2%), and D-dimer (97.1%). A high level of IL-6 (>10 pg/ml) was observed in all detected patients. Median time from initial symptom to death was 15 days (IQR 11-20), and a significant association between aspartate aminotransferase (p=0.002), alanine aminotransferase (p=0.037) and time from initial symptom to death were interestingly observed. Conclusion Older males with comorbidities are more likely to develop severe disease, even die from SARS-CoV-2 infection. Respiratory failure is the main cause of COVID-19, but either virus itself or cytokine release storm mediated damage to other organ including cardiac, renal, hepatic, and hemorrhage should be taken seriously as well.