Chadwick Boseman’s wife leaves fans ‘choked up’ with tearful Gotham Awards speech

Chadwick Boseman: Black Panther star dies of cancer aged 43

Hollywood actor Chadwick Boseman was remembered at this year’s 30th annual IFP Gotham Awards on Monday night, as his tearful widow Simone Ledward Boseman delivered a moving tribute to her husband. The Black Panther passed away in August of 2020 aged just 43, after being secretly diagnosed with colon cancer back in 2016.

Chad, thank you. I love you. I am so proud of you

Simone Ledward Boseman

As the world still mourns the actor’s death, his legacy lives on with Simone noting he “made a practice of telling the truth” as she accepted his Gotham Awards Tribute prize.

Appearing via video link to the virtual ceremony in Manhatten, she said: “He is the most honest person I’d ever met.

“He actively searched for it, in himself, those around him and the moment. The truth can be a very easy thing for the self to avoid. But if one does not live in truth, then it’s impossible to live life.”

She explained that it was “how he lived his life, day in and day out”.

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“Imperfect but determined. He was blessed to live many lives within his concentrated one,” she continued.

“He developed his understanding of what it meant to be the one, the none and the all. ‘A vessel to be poured into and out of,’ he’d said.”

Simone went on: “He harnessed the power of letting go, and letting God’s love shine through. He realised that when one is able to recognise that when their strength does not come from themselves, they rarely mess up. That’s what he was doing when he was acting. Modelling for us a path to true fulfilment.”

She urged fans to not let his “conviction be in vain” while branding it an “honour to receive the award on behalf of her husband, adding it was an “acknowledgment of not only his profound work but of his impact on this industry and this world.”

Simone began to cry as she addressed her beloved directly: “Chad, thank you. I love you. I am so proud of you. Keep shining your light on us. Thank you.”

Chadwick’s last film was Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, where he appeared alongside fellow Gotham Award nominee Viola Davis.

In November, Netflix confirmed its plan to campaign the late star as the lead actor in the film, which is based on August Wilson’s 1982 play about the Mother of Blues Ma Rainey and her experience of white music management at the time.

It takes place in Chicago in 1927 and delves into the racial tension within the music industry as white record executives profited off of Black artists.

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Following Simone’s emotional tribute, fans took to social media to share their thoughts.

One posted on Twitter: “Crying actual tears right now at Chadwick Boseman’s wife’s speech!!”

“Simone’s words were beautiful, a very fitting tribute to a brilliant actor. RIP,” a second agreed.

A third added: “That Chadwick Boseman tribute really choked me up. Sending love to his wife and loved ones.”

“I felt that speech 100%. A real one. RIP Chadwick. Maybe gone but never, never forgotten,” said a fourth.

A fifth agreed: “Bless her heart. She’s an amazing lady.”

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