Immortality is a bad thing :c
(Gimli died at the age of 242)
This is a lovely image…but I’d like to point out that his age reference is when he sailed to Valinor…not when he died.
Sailing West is by no means an indication of death. Valinor is the homeland of the First Born. And a place where chosen mortals can go for peace. It’s more of a paradise retirement community than anything else. Yes the gods and goddesses live there, but they are tangible beings…sometimes…and the Hidden Isle is a tangible place for those granted the route to it.
Did he eventually die? Yes. Same with Bilbo, Frodo and Sam. Their lives might have been slightly extended (aside from being Ring bearers)…Tolkien only ever elaborated, slightly in his letters:
‘Alas! there are some wounds that cannot be wholly cured’, said Gandalf — not in Middle-earth. Frodo was sent or allowed to pass over Sea to heal him — if that could be done, before he died. He would have eventually to ‘pass away’: no mortal could, or can, abide for ever on earth, or within Time. So he went both to a purgatory and to a reward, for a while: a period of reflection and peace and a gaining of a truer understanding of his position in littleness and in greatness, spent still in Time amid the natural beauty of ‘Arda Unmarred’, the Earth unspoiled by evil.
As for Frodo or other mortals, they could only dwell in Aman for a limited time — whether brief or long. The Valar had neither the power nor the right to confer ‘immortality’ upon them. Their sojourn was a ‘purgatory’, but one of peace and healing and they would eventually pass away (die at their own desire and of free will) to destinations of which the Elves knew nothing.
So it’s more than likely that Frodo lived out the rest of his life there. And Bilbo, Sam and Gimli spent their final days there. The boat ride was not their death passage -_-. That would be in the Halls of Mandos. Where mortals have separate passages from elves, when they’ve died. Elves wait in the Halls until the end of time. Mortals are taken to different places, unseen to the elves. Dwarves are ruled by Aule, and are said to be gathered by him to wait for the end and the rebuilding the world.