On Tuesday, Dec. 27, 2016, actress Carrie Fisher passed away in a hospital in Los Angeles, Calif. Fans paid their respects in many ways. An owner of a pizzeria in New York City decided to pay tribute to the star by giving out free pizza to fans.
Hakki Akdeniz is the owner of Champion Pizza in Soho. He told ABC news that he began learning English after watching “Star Wars,” before immigrating to America from Turkey. When he heard the news of Fisher’s passing he felt obligated to pay his respects to a fellow Jedi. The promotion is for “Star Wars” fans everywhere, so on Dec. 28, and 29, anyone who stopped in at Champion Pizza dressed as any of the characters of the film was given a free slice of pizza. As a special tribute to Fisher’s character, Princess Leia, anyone who wore her costume got a free pie.
According to Akdeniz, this promotion has nothing to do with publicity for his restaurant, and everything to do with the galaxy far far away, of which he is such a huge fan. In 1995 he watched “Star Wars” for the first time in his native country of Turkey without knowing any English. From that movie, he picked up certain words and phrases that helped him learn the language. It was 20 years later before he would move to the U.S. and find work at a pizza parlor in 2005. The Princess Leia actress came to the Pizzeria as a customer, and Akdeniz asked the waitress to say hello for him. As the waitress motioned to him Fisher looked toward him and waived. When she finished her meal she left a $100 tip for the waitress.
In New Orleans, a Mardi Gras marching band, called the Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus, is organizing a line-style march in honor of the beloved actress. A group of majorettes, called Leijorettes, will lead the parade dressed as Fisher’s famous character. If the permits come through in time the parade is set to kick off on Friday, Dec. 29.
This iconic actress never received a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame. According to policy, she will not be eligible for a nomination until she is deceased five years. However, a dedicated fan, Jason “Grimlock” Thomas, decorated a blank square in front of the famous landmark, Grauman’s Chinese theater, with silver stick on lettering in recognition of the highly admired Hollywood icon. He posted a picture of his tribute on his Instagram account with the words, “May the force be with you always.” Thomas added the word “Hope,” which quotes what her character said in the newly released movie “Rogue One.” She made this statement at that end of the movie, proclaiming that it was what the rebels had sacrificed themselves for. Fans came out to the make-shift star and laid candles, flowers, and Star Wars memorabilia nearby.
Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, will be making funeral arrangements for the star. Grauman’s Chinese Theater will hold a special event on Saturday for fans in her honor.
Fisher starred in films such as “Shampoo,” “Hannah and her Sisters,” and “The Blues Brothers.” Nonetheless, the world will remember her best as the princess everyone grew up loving.
Only one day following Fisher’s death her mom, Debbie Renolds, suffered a stroke and died in a Calif. hospital. Fans and friends all around the world join together to respectfully bid farewell to the beloved mother and daughter and wishing them a fine journey to the galaxy far far away, where they will never again feel any pain.
By Katherine Miller
Edited by Cathy Milne
E-News: Carrie Fisher Make-shift Walk of Fame Star Draws Crowds After Actress’ Death
ABC News: NY Pizzeria Owner Pays Tribute to Carrie Fisher With Free Slices
ABC News: Fans Honor Carrie Fisher with Make-shift Star on Walk of Fame
Image Courtesy of Gage Skidmore’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License