They're not that different from you, are they? Same haircuts. Full of hormones, just like you. Invincible, just like you feel. The world is their oyster. They believe they're destined for great things, just like many of you, their eyes are full of hope, just like you. Did they wait until it was too late to make from their lives even one iota of what they were capable? Because, you see gentlemen, these boys are now fertilizing daffodils. But if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you. Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it? - - Carpe - - hear it? - - Carpe, carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.
That quote in "Dead Poets Society" is one of my favorite scenes not just from a Robin Williams movie, but from any movie.
Williams was found dead Monday in his California home. His loss has been felt around the world, and not just because of his comedic and acting talents.
Williams' love of others is an example any of us can follow. He was a tremendous supporter of the military and servicemen and women, spending a lot of time around the world entertaining and spending time with them.
Williams was also amazing when it came to how he loved children who are dealing with severe illnesses.
He was a long-time supporter of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital here in Memphis, appearing in multiple campaigns for the facility.
I could read stories like this all day that show how much kindness Williams brought to young patients and their families.
President Obama released a very nice statement of condolence:
"Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between. But he was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as an alien - but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit. He made us laugh. He made us cry. He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most - from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets. The Obama family offers our condolences to Robin's family, his friends, and everyone who found their voice and their verse thanks to Robin Williams."
In his honor, here are my top 5 Robin Williams movies:
1. Dead Poets Society - Williams role here as a teacher who uses unconventional means to get his students is inspiring, touching and funny.
2. Good Morning, Vietnam - Has some of my favorite one-liners that I still use.
3. Good Will Hunting - Another teaching role here, Williams is a weathered professor who mentors Matt Damon and humanizes the movie.
4. The World According to Garp - I used to watch this every time it came on cable in the 80s. A little strange, unexpected, and Williams keeps it light.
5. Aladdin - He may have been just a voice of the Genie, but without his whirlwind of improv, this isn't nearly as entertaining.