Carrie Fisher passed away today, December 27, 2016, at the age of 60.
She wanted her end to be remembered as having drowned in moonlight, strangled by her own bra.
She was beloved the world over for playing the role of Princess (then General) Leia Organa in the Star Wars films. She was also an accomplished screenwriter, script doctor, and writer. She was also the most irreverent person one might ever meet, full of life and light and hope.
I've struggled to write this all day, not because I didn't have something to say, we all do, but because I hate when people insert themselves into their remembrances of people. And, I suppose, it's unavoidable. The thing with Carrie Fisher is that she was someone personal to a LOT of people, even if she hadn't met them. I had the great honor of meeting her on a few occasions and even getting to share the stage with her, to ask her questions in front of a crowd of thousands.
It was one of the most important moments of my life. But it wasn't any more important than that first time I saw her pull that white hood down over her head and defy the Empire. It wasn't any more important than reading stories of her overcoming her mental illness, or, if not overcoming it, talking frankly about it. It wasn't any more important than the awe of watching one of her stories play out on the screen, whether that was Postcards From the Edge or episodes of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. She was everywhere. Her thumbprint remains on my childhood as surely as George Lucas's.
My experience wasn't substantially different than anyone else's. Carrie Fisher's work, behind the camera and in front, helped shape me into the person I am. It showed me something about how women ought to be treated, how they ought to treat themselves, what they looked like as role models. She showed everyone these things. People have been reaching out to me to console me about her loss, but I really didn't know her any differently than anyone else.
She was amazing and she meant a lot to a lot of people. She taught us all a lot about ourselves. She taught us a lot about the world. And she taught us to never give up, no matter how much our personal afflictions might tell us to.
The words we last saw her speaking in a Star Wars movie are more important now than ever.
And that's what we'll do.