Randy Pausch, the charismatic young college professor who chronicled his battle with pancreatic cancer in a remarkable speech widely-known as the “Last Lecture,” has died.
He was 47.
A dear friend to Diane Sawyer and ‘Good Morning America,’ Pausch’s lecture and subsequent interview was one of the most powerful accounts of hope, grace and optimistism ‘GMA’ has ever featured, and drew a worldwide response.
It all began with one, age-old question: What would you say if you knew you were going to die and had a chance to sum up everything that was most important to you?
That question had been posed to the annual speaker of a lecture series at Carnegie Mellon University, where Pausch was a computer science professor. For Pausch, though, the question wasn’t hypothetical.
Pausch, a father of three small children with his wife Jai, had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer — and given six months to live.
Friends and colleagues flew in from all around the country to attend his last lecture. And — almost as an afterthought — the lecture was videotaped and put on the Internet for the few people who couldn’t get there that day.
That was all it took.
Somehow amid the vast clamor of the Web and the bling-bling of million-dollar budgets, savvy marketing campaigns and millions of strange and bizarre videos, the voice of one earnest professor standing at a podium and talking about his childhood dreams cut through the noise.
The lecture was so uplifting, so funny, so inspirational that it went viral. So far, 10 million people have downloaded it.
If you had only six months to live, what would you do? How would you live your life? And how can all of us take heart from Pausch’s inspiring message to live each day to its fullest? (Read more here, Reprinted from ABC News)
Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.