Recently my sister and I were talking about the sheer number of people that were lost this year, and while we always lose icons, 2016 felt brutal by comparison. She said that the reason why was because it's not just the number, it's what these people did and what they stood for. Carrie Fisher was an activist, Alan Rickman did work to fight poverty for performing artists, Ali devoted his life to charity work, and that's only a tip of what they did. Sue brought up humanity, and maybe the real reason why 2016 feels empty is because a lot of these stars and pop icons reminded us of humanity and empathy, two things that appear to be in short supply.
And honestly, I get the feeling we're going to lose more people like Alan Rickman, Carrie Fisher, and Debbie Reynolds in 2017. Does it suck? Yeah, because losing kick-ass people always sucks. But maybe for all the shit 2016 has brought, I think there's something to be learned from it. Besides the cliche "Life's short, love those closest to you," bit, it's that hold those that taught you to value life, humanity, and empathy close to you. For when they eventually leave (and it usually happens when things start really falling to bits) you'll be the one to help fill that void and be that person that is a shining example of humanity. Not a perfect example, but a good one, and I think we can all agree that the world could use more of those.