It’s been a whole year since we lost the comedy legend that was Robin Williams, and the pain still hasn’t really lessened. Both a talented actor and first class funny man, he bought laughter to millions despite suffering his own personal battle with depression and other serious health issues. On the anniversary of his death, we decided to honour him through some of his finest quotes and greatest advice. Prepare to cry a little (or a lot).
“No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.”
As well as a movie and TV star Williams was also a passionate philanthropist. He made benefit appearances on behalf of women’s rights and war veterans, co-founded the Windfall Foundation and for several years supported the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“What’s right is what’s left if you do everything else wrong.”
At highschool, Williams was voted “most funny” by his classmates, but also “least likely to succeed”. Well, he certainly showed them!
“You’ll have bad times, but it’ll wake you up to the good stuff you weren’t paying attention to.”
Throughout his life Williams battled addictions with cocaine and alcohol, as well as depression. He had managed to stay clean for two decades, before falling off the wagon in 2006. He then managed to stayed sober until his suicide in 2014, although he attended rehab a few weeks before his death for a refresher course. He credited his family, particularly his son Zak, for inspiring him to live a better life.
“You’re only given a little spark of madness, you mustn’t lose it.”
When he was starting out as a performer, Williams had a street act as a Mime outside the New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. He then went on to experiment with comedy in San Francisco and LA, developing a hilarious stand-up act that would lead to his hugely successful acting career.
“Comedy is acting out optimism.”
After his close friend fellow actor Christopher Reeve suffered a life-changing injury which left him paralysed from the neck down, Williams visited him in hospital dressed as a surgeon. Reeve claimed it was the first time he had laughed since his accident, and credited Williams for inspiring him to go on.
“Reality: What a concept!”
As a child William’s favourite book was ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’, which he would read to his own kids.
“Make your life spectacular, I know I did.”