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Robin Williams may be gone but his legacy will live forever

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Robin Williams, rest in peace.
Robin Williams, rest in peace.

I am using this column partly to help cope with the news today that one of the greatest comedians and actors to ever have lived has killed himself today.

I can’t quite believe I’m writing these words.

But, alas, Robin Williams is no longer.

Gone, but not forgotten.

I’d be willing to say that he, above perhaps anyone else, was the most treasured entertainer of this era. If he’s not at the top, he deserves a place on the Mount Rushmore of iconic performers.

As a comedian, he had an unmatched ability to improvise anything and make it humorous. His was a gift that only a special few will ever possess.

And now it’s no longer.

One of my first movies I ever saw with Robin Williams was Hook, followed by Mrs. Doubtfire and FernGully: The Last Rainforest.

Looking at his IMDB page, you start to realize that a big portion of his works now personify childhoods that were spent getting lost in classic stories in which he was the star.

After I started growing up and moved past his family movies, I began to discover the true mastery of his craft. Be it his take as Sean MaGuire in Good Will Hunting, his role as Adrian Cronauer in Good Morning, Vietnam, or his wonderful role as John Keating in the Dead Poets Society, a movie I consider one of the greatest of all time. Even as a teenager when I started discovering his more adult-themed roles, I could sense that there was something special about him.

It doesn’t seem fair that he made the choice to remove himself from our world, and yet it’s impossible to really understand the type of pain someone in his situation may have been suffering.

Depression is a deadly, awful and scary thing. If any good can come from the death of Robin Williams, perhaps it will inspire us, as human beings, to pay better attention to the warning signs, be it ourselves or ones we care about.

Nothing that I can say or anyone around me can say or do will make this news any less saddening. If I chose to look at the bright side of it, however, I’d remind myself that while the actor is gone, the roles he made iconic will live forever. Anytime I start to miss him, I can pop in any one of the many of movies he stood out in so brilliantly.

It’s still disheartening to think of what might have been, what he could have still achieved if things had gone differently, though.

I like to think that he’d have been an actor late into his 80s and 90s, even if he was never the same Robin Williams we all knew and loved.

It’s silly to think how one man, a man I never had the pleasure to meet, could have impacted my life so profoundly.

And yet, I know I’m but one person he had such a lasting influence over and that there are millions of others who have similar stories of how he touched them in some large or small way.

Rest in peace Robin. I think it’s safe to say you were a gentle, loving man.

I’m sad that I never got to meet you. Maybe someday in the future I will in our next level of existence.

I will miss you, as will millions of other fans of your work. You touched me in a profound way that only a few other ever have before. Cheers until we meet again, for the very first time.

 

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