Philanthropist and 80’s Pop icon George Michael passed away over the Christmas holiday, and the world is all the less for it.
The legendary British songwriter united the world behind his stellar performances and even richer musical talent. Fans and fellow musicians are regaling his long and glorious career as a man who was complex, but above all caring and overflowing with limitless compassion.
His sudden passing comes as a shock to many and the departure of the brilliant performer came all too fast at the age of 53, however, no one can deny that in his life his respect for his fellow human beings was unparalleled.
George Michael’s influence helped shape a generation of future vocalists and musical talents, and people found themselves in his soulful words did artists like Carrie Underwood who would write on Instagram yesterday,
“As a child, his was the first voice I could pick out of the sea of voices I heard on the radio. Before I knew anything about him, I knew his voice. As an adult, I cried when I saw him in concert. His songs and his voice helped to teach me how to sing. I will forever regret not letting him know…Thank you, George, for giving the world your gifts”
And even as Michael’s influence would extend into the future history written by pop icons, he earned respect from his fellow legends in the craft.
Various artists talked about his abilities, with the prolific Elton John chiming in on the loss of the music phenom stating,
“I am in deep shock. I have lost a beloved friend – the kindest, most generous soul and a brilliant artist. My heart goes out to his family, friends and all of his fans.”
Michael in his public life would extend to shape and mold music, his work will forever be immortalized in popular memory, but when he was not defined by his activities in the spotlight, his philanthropy would truly shine as various stories about his efforts to support others would cement his standing as a stellar human.
From tales of free concerts for the nurses who took care of his mother who suffered from cancer ten years prior, to the millions of dollars donated from his hit single “Jesus to a Child” to Childline, a 24-hour counseling service dedicating to supporting children and young adults in need, to donating to London Lighthouse, an AIDS hospice and support, and Rainbow Trust, a children’s charity, George Michael was a true humanitarian dedicated to making people’s lives better.
His passing leaves us all longing, but we can learn from his teachings, the definition of his life. We can do better for the world than how we enter and leave it.