Patton Oswalt Remembers Michelle McNamara in Moving Essay

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Ever since his wife, Michelle McNamara, died in her sleep at the age of 46 last month, Patton Oswalt has been uncharacteristically quiet.

Michelle McNamara

The beloved comedian and actor tweeted a loving tribute to McNamara one week after her death, writing:

"She wrote lines that stung & hummed. 13 years in her presence was happily humbling. #RIPMichelleMcNamara."

He included a link to make donations to in McNamara's honor to 826LA, an organization that assists students with their writing skills.

Fans of Oswalt's know that he and his McNamara - a writer who operated the website True Crime Diary - shared a common love of words.

The comic is as well-known for his eloquence as for his cunning wit, so it was no surprise when he paid more long-form tribute to his beloved wife of 11 years in a way that honored both her work and her devotion to her husband and daughter.

He accomplished that today, in an essay for Time magazine that is both moving and full of surprising revelations about a life well-lived:

After recounting her tireless work for the website that made hers a familiar name in certain online circles, Oswalt recalls McNamara's earlier days and lesser-known achievements:

"Those are facts but not her entire story," he writes.

"Her life also involved social work in Belfast and Oakland, and screenwriting in Los Angeles, and teaching creative writing at Minnesota State, and motherhood and marriage and glorious, lost years on the outskirts of the early 90s Chicago music scene, where she also worked for a young Michelle Obama.

"One day Michelle Obama’s husband came into the office to speak to the staff. He was impressive and funny. Another encounter, another memory in a life spent fascinated with people and relationships and the unknown.

"The reaction to her passing, the people who are shocked at her senseless absence, is a testament to how she steered her life with joyous, wicked curiosity. Cops and comedians call—speechless or sending curt regards.

"Her family is devastated but can’t help remember all of the times she made them laugh or comforted them, and they smile and laugh themselves. She hasn’t left a void. She’s left a blast crater."

You can read Oswalt's entire tribute to McNamara at Time magazine's website now.

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