I usually don’t post when a celebrity dies or celebrates a birthday. It isn’t out of disrespect or even the fact that so many others are posting that I see anything I might add as being just a drop in an ocean of sentiment. Instead, it is because I see such things as being personal. Sharing intimate thoughts into the anonymity of the web, lessens those feelings in some way, reducing loss to cold information.

But clicking a link today and suddenly seeing the stark words “Alan Rickman dies at 69” hit me harder than expected. His movies have been a part of my life for so long: Die Hard, Robin Hood, Galaxy Quest, Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Harry Potter. He was like a dear friend. More than most, he brought his characters to life and made them real for me. I felt like I knew each one individually. As much as I loved his characters, I could always see that the man himself was fun and full of life. Even when he was Harry’s nemesis, you could see that as soon as the cameras were turned off, he and his fellow actors were the best of friends.

It is probably the joy and love of life that I saw in him, that caused the news to hit me so hard. As I said, I don’t normally comment on these events. But today I felt that I couldn’t let his passing go by without offering him my farewell.

Alan Rickman, you were a giant amoung men. You will be sorely missed.