Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The death of Heath Ledger

I was greatly saddened yesterday afternoon to hear of Heath Ledger's death. Although I can't say that I knew him, I did meet him at the wedding of a close friend of my husband's in Malibu Canyon the summer of 1998. This was before his meteoric rise to fame after playing Gabriel, the son of Mel Gibson's character, in the movie "The Patriot." He sat at our table during the reception with Lisa Zane, whom he was dating at the time. He had it all. He was funny, charming and of course, impossibly adorable. And he was dating someone significantly older than himself. Which made him irresistible in my book. But, what really stood out about him was that he was interested in other people. He asked you about yourself. A quality that stands out in the land of LaLa. When he became famous, I wasn't surprised. He had that mysterious "IT" factor that makes people movie stars. I was blown away by his nuanced performance in Brokeback Mountain. The sadness I feel is not just that he was 28 years old and had so much potential - as a human being who touches others, and as an actor, but that he was father to a 2 year old little girl. He will never again get to hold her little hand as they walk together across a crowded street. He will never again be able to throw her in the air and hear her giggles. He is gone. And he will be missed, even by people who didn't know him.


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16 comments:

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

It's unusual to hear about an actor that comes across in real life the way they do on the screen. His death is indeed very sad. This was a touching tribute.

Mrs. G. said...

28 and hugely talented. Very sad.

HRH said...

So sad.

Lisa Milton said...

It's strange how hard his death seems to be to us - I include myself.

I thought of his daughter too.

That's what kills me, hollywood star or not - to lose a parent early always leaves a scar.

liv said...

You know, I see him relative to losing my best friend so young. There's something about a beautiful boy cut short that just does crazy things to my heart.

A Mom Two Boys said...

Gah...I'm having some major issues with this today, as you'll see on my blog. I can't even write about HIM dying, just what other people are saying about it. I thought about his daughter too, and Michelle Williams, because I can't imagine how sad she must be for her daughter. GAH.

Jen said...

I keep thinking of his parents, also, and what they must be going through. It is very, very sad.

Rima said...

I've read so many things about him in the past day that echo the way you've described him here. Hopefully that gives some comfort to his family and will one day help to paint a picture for his little girl of what an amazing person her Daddy was. So, so, sad . . .

Rima said...

Um, not to take away from the poignancy of this post, but YOU KNOW MOVIE STARZ???? Jealous, right here.

JCK said...

Thanks for all of your thoughts, ladies. He was the kind of person you remember. I've thought about his parents, too. Can't imagine. His death has really struck a chord. Apparently there is a GREAT article about him in the LA Times today, my husband saved it for me.

And RIMA you are too funny. Yes, my husband has been an actor here and some of our friends are well known actors, but don't be gettin' any ideas that I'm going around all fancy smancy. Or hoity toity.

jennifer h said...

I had the same feelings you've articulated so well here.

Kellan said...

Wow - you met him. It is such a shame - my girls told me when I picked them up from school - it was all over the school and the kids were all talking about it. It is so very sad. Take care. Kellan

Tootsie Farklepants said...

I remember seeing him on Oprah around Oscar time for Brokeback Mountain. He just seemed so sweet, so humble, and so grateful. So genuine. He had that "aw shucks" kind of vibe and I just thought he was about the sweetest thing ever. It just breaks my heart.

MamaGeek said...

It is tragic. He seemed so talented and so not into the standard hollywood pretty boy limelight.

And you met him? That makes you famous by association. Sorta. :)

Countess said...

How sad. I do feel for his daughter. I lost my father when I was 3. It makes for a difficult life, no matter who you are or what the circumstances. Some things are just never right.

by Johanna Brandvik said...

so true, jck.
he was incredibly talented, but it's realizing the loss of a friend, brother, son and father that really pulls on my heartstrings.

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