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Students discuss the passing of “Harry Potter’s” Michael Gambon

Last Thursday, the "Harry Potter" world said goodbye to one of its most important cast members. Michael Gambon, more famously known as the man who played the great wizard and headmaster at Hogwarts, Albus Dumbledore, died at 82.

The well-known eight-part film series was an important piece of many childhoods of college students today. Albus Dumbledore acts almost as a grandfather figure, always advising Harry Potter and his friends on how to chase away the evils of Lord Voldemort and his followers or even practically sacrificing himself at the end of the sixth movie. 

According to a statement issued to The Guardian, Daniel Radcliffe, Gambon's co-star who played the lead, Harry Potter, said Gambon was "one of the most brilliant, effortless actors I've ever had the privilege of working with, but despite his immense talent, the thing I will remember most about him is how much fun he had doing his job." 

Jill Woodruff, a sophomore studying interior architecture, said she found out about Gambon's death through TikTok and immediately texted her family members to tell them of the tragic news. 

Woodruff said that while she was growing up, her older siblings enjoyed the "Harry Potter" series, so it also became a part of her childhood. She said she had also gone to "Harry Potter" World at Universal Studios, which made what she had seen in the movies really come to life. 

Although Woodruff said she was not completely surprised by his death, it was still sad to see such an influential actor and to some extent, character, pass away. 

"I was kind of shocked but I also wasn't because he was really old when he played Dumbledore, so I was not really surprised but it was still weird to think about," she said. 

Peter Anderson, a freshman studying photography, said he originally found out about Gambon's death through the OU 2027 Snapchat story. He said he had forgotten about Gambon even still being alive but was still sad to hear about his death. 

Anderson said he owns all of the" Harry Potter" DVDs and enjoyed watching them when he was younger. 

"I guess it's a good experience," he said. "It's definitely a good show. It gets you on the edge of your seat at times and I feel like it's an all-around good movie (series)." 

Kyra Drescher, a freshman studying integrated language arts, said she originally learned about Gambon dying through YikYak when someone posted about 2023 taking away Dumbledore. 

She said she was very sad to hear about his death since her mother had been a huge fan of the series and had passed down that love for "Harry Potter" to her. Her family has a tradition of watching the entire movie series and the "Fantastic Beasts" series during one weekend in October, making Harry Potter and everything surrounding it very special to her. 

"I was sad because growing up with Harry Potter and everything, this is like a childhood thing," she said. "Now all the actors are starting to die off. It's getting depressing." 

Drescher said if Maggie Smith, the actress who played Professor McGonagall, also died this year, she simply would not know what to do with herself. 

"If McGonagall dies this year, it's all downhill for me," she said. "I'm dropping out. This is it." 


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