It is not length of life, but depth of life

RachelAnn Degnan, Senior Reporter

Today our world now more than ever is almost entirely shaped by famous people and celebrities that leave a lasting impression. CWU students recently shared some deceased celebrities who have left a lasting impact on them. As the American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “It is not length of life, but depth of life.” 

Mia Yung, an economic and public policy major, was filled with passion by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“Her passing was very personal to me. I want to go into law, and so when she passed and the person that replaced it kind of was like, oh, they’re just letting anyone,” Yung said. “It just made me sad, and it made me want to do what she [did].”

Chloe Clark, a fine arts major, has great respect for musical artists that helped her get where she is.

“It’s tough because you know rappers don’t always get the best [reputation], but I was here for Juice Wrld and Lil Peep. I have mad respect for both of them,” Clark said. “Their music just helped me get here to college because they talked a lot about having nothing and then showing up and being here. So it’s kinda like how I am from high school to here.”

Dave Hartless, a political science and public relations major, learned a difficult life lesson through a news anchor.

“Stewart Scott passed away about five years ago and he was an anchor for ESPN. Just watching the way he made sports news cool was a big part for me, but the other part was his attitude about battling cancer,” Hartless said. “It wasn’t about him beating it; it was about him staying alive for his daughters. When he lost his battle, it just really hit me that the world is not about you. It’s about everyone else, and you are a small but important part to someone else.”

Lily Klevjer, a law and justice major, saw the impression Mac Miller left on her peers.

“I wasn’t super invested in [Miller], but I think just the story hurt, and I saw how it affected people, and so that said alot.”

Molly Bartlett, an elementary education major, reflected on the awareness some celebrities raised in their passing.

“The one that I remember the most was when Robin Williams died. Because I was pretty young at the time, that was the first big one that I recognized. I know him, I’ve seen his movies, he makes other people happy, and when I found out the reason behind it, it was the worst,” Bartlett said. “I struggle with depression and all that and I could relate to that a lot. It made me recognize that just because someone seems okay doesn’t mean they are. We all have different stories.”

Bria Wright, a graduate student studying clinical and mental health counseling, saw the impact an actor had on the next generation.

“Chadwick Boseman was really shocking. I was working in a middle school around the time that Black Panther came out and a lot of the kids were really excited to see it. I got to see the impact that his role in the movie really had on youth, so it was really sad to see him go.”

Sydnee Adams, a first-year student, remembered her grief over Boseman’s death. 

“Chadwick Boseman hurt because I was a really big fan of Marvel and his movies were really great. I liked his movie ‘42’ when he played Jackie Robinson and that was a really good movie that my dad showed me when I was little.”

Senior biomedical major Rebekah Longmire saw an example in Ray Hunt of how she wanted to live her life. 

“He was a horse trainer, and he used his philosophy with horses for his life. He stayed calm and patient in everything he did, and he lived his life so peacefully,” Longmire said. “It is truly an inspiration.”

We have lost many inspiring celebrities and people who have left impactful memories and lessons with their fans and followers. They are gone but never forgotten.