kick the bucket meaning?

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What is the meaning of "to kick the bucket" idiom?
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Idiom Scenario 1:

Two cousins are chatting over coffee ...
Cousin 1:  "How are you?  How's life?  I haven't seen you in a couple of years."
Cousin 2:  "I'm doing OK.  I guess you didn't hear about Grandma Jean?"
Cousin 1:  "No.  What happened?"
Cousin 2:  "She kicked the bucket last year."
Cousin 1:  "I'm sorry to hear that."

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Idiom Definition:

"to kick the bucket"
to die
Synonyms: conk, croak, cease, demise, depart, die, drop, expire, finish, go, pass, perish, succumb

(The idea being that if one is standing on a bucket with a noose around one's neck and someone's kicks the bucket away, one will hang and die.)


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Idiom Scenario 2:

Two friends are catching up ...
Friend 1:  "How have you been doing?"
Friend 2:  "Pretty good.  And you?"
Friend 1:  "Same."
Friend 2:  "How is your old muscle car running?"
Friend 1:  "Oh, it kicked the bucket last year."
Friend 2:  "What happened?"
Friend 1:  "I was racing it and I blew the engine."

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Idiom Usage:

"To kick the bucket" is very informal and may cause offence to some people.  It is not a very nice way to talk of someone's death.
"To kick the bucket" can be used for animate and inanimate things."
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Gerund Form of the Idiom:

Kicking the bucket means that someone is dead.
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Idiom Conjugations:

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