It’s been nearly two weeks since Patton Oswalt‘s wife, Michelle McNamara, died in her sleep. On April 21, exactly seven days after she celebrated her 46th birthday, she just didn’t wake up. It’s obviously been a terrible time for Oswalt and their seven-year-old daughter, Alice, but the actor-comedian wrote a beautiful tribute in Time magazine, dedicated to Michelle, her work, her family and how she affected everyone around her, particularly their daughter.
“I loved her,” he wrote. “This is the first time I’ve been able to use ‘I’ writing this. Probably because there hasn’t been much of an ‘I’ since the morning of April 21. There probably won’t be for a while. Whatever there is belongs to my daughter—to our daughter. Alice.”
McNamara, a true-crime writer who was in the middle of her first book, died in her sleep; the cause of death is still under investigation.
“The reaction to her passing, the people who are shocked at her senseless absence, is a testament to how she steered her life with joyous, wicked curiosity,” he penned. “Her family is devastated but can’t help remember all of the times she made them laugh or comforted them, and they smile and laugh themselves.
“She hasn’t left a void. She’s left a blast crater.”
Oswalt closed his heartbreaking post with a story about Alice, which he recently shared on Twitter.
"When your mom dies you're the best memory of her. Everything you do is a memory of her." — Alice Oswalt, 7
— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) May 1, 2016
“Five days after Michelle was gone, Alice and I were half-awake at dawn, after a night of half-sleeping,” he wrote. “Alice sat up in bed. Her face was silhouetted in the dawn light of the bedroom windows. I couldn’t see her expression. I just heard her voice: ‘When your mom dies, you’re the best memory of her. Everything you do and say is a memory of her.'”
He concluded: “That’s the kind of person Michelle created and helped shape. That was Michelle. That is Michelle. I love her.”
From his tender words, you get a real sense just how much of an impact she made on those who knew her. The way he honoured their love is truly special, and their daughter sounds like she’s as brilliant and beautiful as her mom.