Bill Paxton – Actor, Husband, Father and Friend
I write this blog with a heavy heart for the loss of passionate actor and a friend to my wife and me. Bill passed on Feb 25th from a stroke resulting from complications after heart surgery on February 14th. He leaves behind his beloved wife Louise, son James and daughter Lydia.
I first became familiar with Bill in the movie “Weird Science” back in the 80’s where he played Chet, a jerk older brother who got turned into a “blob” for his abusive behavior to his younger brother and friend. But he was anything but a jerk in real life! Bill was best known for his outstanding performances in Titanic, Apollo 13, Aliens, and Edge of tomorrow. He recently had a starring role in TV drama series called Training Day.
Bill was and is more to me than just a great actor. Bill came into my life when I met my beautiful wife Yuki. Yuki works at a local sushi restaurant, Matsumoto http://www.matsumoto-restaurant.com where Bill, his family, and co-workers frequented on a weekly basis, sometimes 2x a week. Bill became more than just a customer to Yuki. He became a friend, someone who genuinely cared about Yuki’s well-being. They shared laughs, stories and the affection of amazing sushi and sake. He was not only genuinely nice to Yuki, but he also was always gracious and friendly to the patrons of the restaurant who recognized him. He offered to take selfies with them, he made conversation and just made everyone feel comfortable being around him.
I would love when Yuki would come home from work to tell me the stories about Bill that evening. He would walk into the restaurant and the first thing he would say out loud was, “Hey Yuki!” She would stop what she was doing, go over, give him a hug and a kiss on each cheek.
I had the great fortune to meet Bill one evening at the restaurant when Yuki and I decided to dine there. Bill and his family came in and were seated next to us. He barely recognized Yuki because Yuki was not wearing her work uniform and was dressed in regular street clothes. When Yuki said, “Hello Bill!”. He said, “Yuki!, Wow you look amazing! I barely recognized you.” Then Yuki introduced me to him and his family as her husband. It was the first time Bill got to meet formally meet me after he learned about our marriage several months early. He was so thoughtful and kind. He gave each of us his blessing in marriage, with some friendly advice. His wife Louise and I hand several minutes of meaningful conversation while he and Yuki talked. We thoroughly enjoyed their company and presence during our dinner.
After this evening, Bill told Yuki several times how great of a couple we were and how happy he was for her that we found each other. After that evening I only had several other short interactions with Bill. However, his impact on me and us as husband and wife was larger than he could have known. Yuki and I even gave it great thought in asking Bill to be our marriage officiant for our party.
The last time Yuki saw Bill was a few days before his scheduled heart surgery. It was a busy night at the restaurant, but Bill made sure that Yuki was aware he was not going to be back for a few months since he’d be recovering. And his last words to Yuki were, “Yuki please think of me on Valentines Day!”
Bill if you could hear me or if you can somehow read the words on this computer screen I’d like you to know that Yuki and I will do more than just think of you on Valentines Day! We will pay tribute to your life, your career and for the impact, you made our lives. We are both deeply saddened for your loss and will miss you greatly.
I’d like to send strength and support to Bill’s family during this challenging time. And equally as important, I’d like to send all my love to family, friends, clients, and acquaintances who read this. Please give someone you love today a hug, a call to say hello or tell them that you love them. Because you never know when life might be cut short.
Steve and Yuki
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