difficult to say -- do you mean if i were alive back then or if doyle were alive and writing today?
i think nowadays readers are somewhat more sophisticated than they were then and we respond differently when a popular hero dies. sometimes we even get a little annoyed when a hero lives too long (e.g. superman) and do exactly the opposite of what doyle's readership did -- we insist on seeing the hero killed off.
i don't mean to say we're more sophisticated as in we're more intelligent or insightful. i means sophisticated as in jaded and complicated. back then there were readers who thought holmes was a real guy. today's reader is literally immersed in pop culture. with the advent of movies, tv, and amazon.com, today's consumer has seen so many storytellers try so many ways to dazzle us, that killing off a hero isn't what it was in 1890
if i were reading doyle back then, i'd probably write a strongly worded letter to doyle myself, insisting that holmes be resurrected. if doyle were writing today, i'd be fine if holmes died, provided his death what treated in thoughtful, creative, and interesting way