So much lately has been focused on loss. The people we’ve lost from this virus, and the people we could potentially lose from it. Yesterday was the fourth anniversary of Prince’s death, and last week we lost Steve Cash, the brilliant mind behind Sylvester of the Talking Kitty Cat series. It got me thinking of all the others we’ve lost. It goes beyond saying that the ones we love and miss the most are people we knew personally. Yet, it does hurt to lose those we didn’t know, just that we knew of.
Steve Cash was one in a million. I have been watching his You Tube series for a while now, even though he had been doing it for much longer. He chronicled life with his pets – Sylvester, his nasty black cat, Shelby, his black Lab, and others – Gibson, who sadly passed away, Random Kitty (who had babies with Gibson) and various kittens. Each had their own personality, and Sylvester – what a character! He cursed, was rude and even held a job (and tried to steal money from his employer by changing computer records). Each and every episode had me laughing from start to finish. Steve had battled mental illness and bipolar disease for quite some time, and last week apparently it got too much for him. He took his own life, and when he did, he took smiles away from us, and parts of our hearts as well. I can only hope he got the peace he was looking for. Fly high, Steve – you’re with Gibson now.
The celebrity death that affected me the most was wrestler Eddie Guerrero. Being the devoted fan that I am, when we heard this had happened – we were devastated. Eddie had conquered so much – he was clean and sober, yet years of abuse to his body finally caught up with him. His heart gave out. So young, so talented – so sad that he is gone. The WWE did amazing tributes to him, ones that showcased what a good performer and great man he really was. I still can’t watch the video they made to honor him without tears running down my face.
Without a doubt, the biggest celebrity death in my “age group” or whatever you’d call it would have to be Michael Jackson. I will never forget the day we found out – when he was in cardiac arrest. My sister was with my kids and I, and she said while watching the news that it sounded like he was already dead. No lie, within a minute or two of her saying that, they announced that he had passed away. So very sad. He had demons of his own, whether you believe he was a good person or a bad one. He was immensely talented, and being gone so young is just a tragedy.
Whitney Houston was a big star, beautiful and talented. She was born the same year as me. It was very sad hearing she had died. It was tragic, but in a way – she brought it on herself. I realize drug addiction to a point is out of the person’s control. And the fact that she left loved ones who missed her, in addition to millions of fans – it is heartbreaking. She died in February of 2012, and her death was covered on television for well over a week. YET – Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees and Donna Summer both died the same year, in May. They were both AS influential on the music scene, but they both died of cancer. Was it too boring, too normal? I was a big fan of both, and I remember their deaths barely being covered. Am I bitter? Yes, I guess you can say I am. Change my mind, but I don’t think you can.
The other big celebrity death, for me, for others? I would have to say Elvis Presley. Who would have thought he would pass away at so young of an age? I remember the day we found out – I was on vacation with my family – my parents and my sister. We were riding home from somewhere we had traveled to while away – and had the radio on. Song after song, over and over – nothing but Elvis tunes. Finally the radio announcer said he had passed away. We were all very surprised. To this day, if I hear an artist’s songs in succession without a break, I’m brought back to the memories of the day Elvis died.
There are so many other influential celebrity deaths that go through my mind – JFK, Jr., Robin Williams, David Cassidy, Davy Jones, David Bowie, Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, the list can go on and on. What celebrity death affected you the most?
R E S T I N P E A C E, S T E V E…