A terminally ill Star Wars fan, whose last wish to see the newest film in the saga was granted last week, died on Tuesday.
32-year-old Texas native Daniel Fleetwood had rare spindle cell sarcoma cancer, and was given two months to live back in July.
We reported on his dying wish was to see the upcoming film Star Wars: The Force Awakens, slated to be released nationwide on December 18. But Fleetwood was well aware that he was running out of time, and with a team of supporters and the power of social media, he asked Disney to help fulfill his dying wish.
Thousands joined the call, using the hashtag #forcefordaniel to spread his story. Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker in the original trilogy, took up the call, as did other actors involved in the film series. On Thursday, Lucasfilm came to Fleetwood’s house and gave the fan his own private viewing of an unedited version of the film.
His wife, Ashley Fleetwood, confirmed the news of his death in a Facebook post in the early hours of Tuesday morning. She posted a photo of the pair embracing.
“Daniel put up an amazing fight to the very end. He is now one with God and with the force,” wrote Ashley. “He passed in his sleep and in peace. He will always be my idol and my hero. Please hug uncle Marc for me and give Lucy lots of kisses. Rest in peace my love.”
Fleetwood’s story captivated the Internet, which was overflowing with support for him in the days leading up to his death. After news of his death broke on Tuesday, social media supporters mourned his loss.
This is when social media is used for good. #ForceForDaniel.
You are now one with the force.
Rest in peace sir…
— Brent Lindeque (@BrentLindeque) November 10, 2015
— ComicBook NOW! (@ComicBookNOW) November 10, 2015
— Teresa Delgado (@icecoldpenguin) November 10, 2015