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From C-suite to C-ya

Many on Main Street America rail against corporate CEOs for their paychecks—354 times the salary of the average worker in 2012, by one estimate—but the hefty compensation packages do have their downside: About 40 percent of the highest-paid CEOs in the United States over the past 20 years eventually ended up being fired—or paid fraud-related fines or settlements, or accepted government bailout money, an Institute for Policy Studies report released earlier this year stated.

Although GM has fully recovered from its bailout—the government recently sold the last of its stake—and announced a peaceful CEO transition; and Jamie Dimon will keep his job, even though JPMorgan agreed to pay the government $13 billion to settle multiple charges, 2013 was no exception in terms of tension-filled CEO departures from big companies.

Here's CNBC's take on the lessons learned from some of the high-profile CEO farewells of 2013, in chronological order.

By Roy Luo, CNBC Digital news intern, and Eric Rosenbaum, CNBC.com

Daniel Grill | Tetra Images | Getty Images