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A Moment With Michael Clarke Duncan

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Here's what I think of when I hear the name Michael Clarke Duncan:

NYC hotel, about ten years ago. Michael was in town doing publicity for Brother Bear and I happened to be staying in the same hotel.

We bump into each other in the lobby -- we had a few mutual friends so it was an easy, comfortable "hello." I gush about how brilliant he was in The Green Mile, and somewhere in the conversation I must've mentioned that my wife and two young boys happen to be with me in the hotel. We wish each other well and go our separate ways.

An hour later, the doorbell rings in our room. I open the door to find Michael Clarke Duncan -- his enormous, muscular arms holding out a stuffed bear. "I don't know if your boys would like this, " he gently offers, "but if they do, this is for them."

The term "gentle giant" may be overused, but I can't imagine a soul for whom the words could be better intended.

Thanks for thinking of my boys, Michael. Your kindness and remarkable talent will be forever treasured. Rest in peace.