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Heartfelt Celebrity Tributes Pour In For Gord Downie

On Wednesday morning, the country was thrown into a state of grief and mourning after news broke that The Tragically Hip’s enigmatic frontman Gord Downie had passed away. Downie had been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in May 2016 and spent his final months with this family, working on his album and book Secret Path, the upcoming solo record Introduce Yerself, and continuing his fight to reconcile Canadian First Nations people’s past.

To honour Gord Downie, CTV has moved up the broadcast premiere of Long Time Running, the stunning documentary that followed Downie and his bandmates as The Tragically Hip set out across Canada on their goodbye tour in the summer of 2016. Receiving its official debut at TIFF in September, Long Time Running will now air on Friday, October 20 at 8 p.m. ET on CTV.

Following Wednesday’s news of Downie’s passing, many fans took to social media to send their condolences to Downie’s family and share their memories and stories about what one of Canada’s most prolific artists meant to them. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was moved to tears when remembering ‘our buddy Gord,’ delivering a beautiful tribute speech for for one of Canada’s greatest poets.

 

Drake shared a memory of a special conversation he had with Downie.

 

Free the Children founder Craig Kielburger remembered Gord, who performed at WE Day both solo and with The Tragically Hip.

 

Canadian musician Jann Arden kept her tweet simple and somber.

 

Neil Young called Downie a “true Canadian artist.”

 

Former Much VJs paid their respects on social. Rick Campanelli remembered started his career at Much by throwing to a song by The Hip.

 

Former Much VJ Erica Ehm also shared her grief over the loss of Downie, who saw the ‘regular dude’ as a literal rainbow.

 

Fellow former Much VJ George Stromboulopoulos remembered Gord as someone who always made people feel special.

 

Actor Seth Rogen paid his respects on social media.

 

Artist Jeff Lemire, who illustrated Downie’s 2016 book Secret Path, shared a beautiful illustration of his friend Gord.

 

Former NHL player and fellow Kingston native Doug Gilmour honoured the way Gord touched Canadians with his music.

 

Sportsnet contributor Ryan McKenna shared beautiful pictures of fans lighting candles in Bobcaygeon.

 

Politician and TV personality Seamus O’Reagan shared the beautiful obituary for Gord in the New York Times.

 

Downie’s hometown of Kingston came together to honour their hero on Wednesday night.

 

The Toronto Maple Leafs honoured one of the country’s greatest poets with a poetic goodbye.

 

The NHL also paid tribute to Gord, who along with The Tragically Hip created the soundtrack for dressing rooms.

 

Stars singer Torq Campbell said that “we believed in Gord because he believed in us.”

 

Toronto Mayor John Tory had the Toronto sign turn red and white on Wednesday night to honour Downie.

 

Marianas Trench frontman Josh Ramsay remembered Downie as ‘such a nice guy.’

 

Leader of the NDP Party Jasmeet Singh honoured Downie, who showed people courage in the face of adversity.

 

Arkells promised to remain inspired by Downie.

 

Vancouver native Ryan Reynolds thanked Downie for his art.

 

Rapper Chuck D paid his respects to Downie on Twitter.

 

Writer, director and lover of all things Canada, Kevin Smith tweeted about Downie’s passing.

 

Paula Abdul remembers Downie as an “extraordinary human being.”

 

Fellow Canadian music legend Gordon Lightfoot said Canada has lost one of its bright stars.