Every so often, the Star Wars fandom tries my patience. I’m sorry, it does. Sometimes we fight about silly things, like if Anakin Skywalker or Luke Skywalker is the Chosen One, or we kvetch about somebody saying a bad word about the prequels. On days like that, it can be hard to be positive about this little community we occupy on the internet.
But then, you have days like yesterday. Days that prompt me to tweet, unabashedly, “My dearest Star Wars family: I love you.”
Here’s what happened:
Within the past few days, a parent of one of my Twitter friends, a skilled podcast editor and passionate Star Wars fan named Noah, passed away. Noah is only sixteen years old, and while it’s hard for anyone to lose a parent, I can only imagine how hard it must be when your own life is really just beginning.
Obviously, in this difficult time it would be hard for Noah to go to one of the stores having a Force Friday event to get the action figures he wants that are debuting September 4th. In light of this, Jason Ward of Making Star Wars started a GoFundMe called Force Friday for Noah! to which he encouraged other fans and friends of Noah to contribute, and thereby help Noah have an awesome Force Friday regardless of his difficult situation.
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The goal for the fundraiser was $1,000. In just two hours, the goal had been reached, and in just seventeen hours, the goal was surpassed by $465, with a total of 78 contributors. Now, Jason has enough money to buy Noah all the Force Friday toys he could wish for (and then some!). Additionally, someone in the comments section on Making Star Wars offered to get him free Star Wars books from Audible, Amazon’s online audiobook store.
All of this was made possible through the generous giving and big hearts of Noah’s friends on social media, most of them Star Wars fans like himself, who wanted to help him in his sad time. A lot of donations were probably made by people who didn’t even know Noah previously, as well, which just goes to show you how kind people (and Star Wars fans), whether you know them personally or not, can be.
This tremendous show of support and love absolutely awed me. It’s things like these that make me realize that this fandom I’m a part of is truly a worthwhile thing. It’s more than just people geeking out over what they love; it’s people loving each other, in large part because of what they love. I feel blessed that I have so many wonderful friends like Noah and Jason to care for, and to care for me.
May the Force be with you, my friends. All of you.