TV & Showbiz

10 Celebrities We Lost in 2018 Who I Wish I Could’ve Met

At the end of every year, we always see those videos showing the notable people and celebrities we lost over the past 12 months.

It’s always amazing to me how many famous people die that you completely forget about. I read a few columns about celebrities we lost in 2018 and found quite a few names of people I didn’t even realize had died.

I put together this list of 10 of the many notables who passed away last year who I wish I’d have been able to meet in person.

Can you imagine having a dinner conversation with any of these?

1. Neil Simon

The well-known screenwriter and playwright was known for such classics as The Odd Couple and Barefoot in the Park. He wrote a couple of movies I’m quite fond of, including Seems Like Old Times and, one of my favorites, Murder By Death.

That last one is one of the funniest movies you’ve likely never heard of, but if you’re a fan of comedies and old classic mysteries, it’s definitely worth a watch.

2. George H.W. Bush

Our 41st president, who died last month, received an amount of respect after his passing I wish more people had cared to extend while he was still alive.

3. Barbara Bush

I think putting the former first lady alongside her husband again would yield an interesting conversation. Barbara Bush was definitely known for telling it like it is, and she was always a person I admired.

4. Billy Graham

I had the pleasure of hearing Graham speak at one of his revivals at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia in the 1980s. Graham is one of those rare well-known pastors who was never touched by a hint of scandal and his own character and moral standards were the reason for that.

I’d love to ask him what he’s experienced since his passing and how close Heaven is to what he expected it to be. If there’s anyone who surely made it there, it is he.

5. Aretha Franklin

I’m afraid I’d have to put the diva to work for a bit, but then again, who wouldn’t insist that Aretha Franklin sing if they had the chance?

6. John McCain

There was a lot to admire about John McCain, but among the most important admirable qualities was a willingness to work across the aisles and to call for unity and teamwork. There’s far too little of that these days.

7. Roy Clark

I’m afraid I’d have to put Roy Clark to work to play some songs. I admire any musicians who are considered virtuosos on their instruments. For Clark, most connected him primarily with the guitar. But this clip from The James Dean Show shows his talent extended past that single instrument:

8. Nanette Fabray

The actress and dancer was a favorite of mine and she died early in 2018 at the incredible age of 97. I’d love to be able to hear her many entertainment stories.

Interestingly enough, Fabray overcame hearing impairment to become an advocate for the hearing impaired and was a founding member of the National Captioning Institute, which made closed captioning possible. And she was among the very first performers to do sign language on television on The Carol Burnett Show:

9. Burt Reynolds

Anyone with an acting career that reached across six decades must have plenty of interesting stories to tell. But for someone like Reynolds, you would just know his stories would be far more interesting than most.

10. Stephen Hawking

For all of his knowledge and understanding of how the universe worked, the celebrated physicist and cosmologist once posted this question to Facebook: “In a world that is in chaos politically, socially and environmentally, how can the human race sustain another 100 years?” He later added that he couldn’t answer that question. I’d love to know what would make a man like Hawking truly tick.

That’s my list.

Which of these would you have most liked to have the chance to meet?

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 27 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.