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Randy Pausch

‘Last Lecture’ Professor Randy Pausch Dies at 47

July 25, 2008 02:14 PM
by Cara McDonough
Randy Pausch, the Carnegie Mellon professor known by millions worldwide for his inspiring words about facing terminal cancer, died Friday.

30-Second Summary

Pausch, who died Friday at his home in Virginia, was diagnosed with incurable pancreatic cancer in September 2006. His “last lecture,” part of a series at Carnegie Mellon University, was delivered in September 2007 and viewed by millions on the Internet.

In the series, the university asked professors to think about what matters most in life and give a hypothetical final talk.

Pausch focused on the life he had lived, rather than on his impending death. At the time, doctors had told him he had three to six months of good health left. But rather than take a serious tone, Pausch often joked with the audience. “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand,” he said. “If I don’t seem as depressed or morose as I should be, sorry to disappoint you.”

He converted his philosophy into a book, “The Last Lecture,” which has been on the nonfiction best-seller list since it was published in April.

Pausch’s words will no doubt to continue to inspire those who seek out his message.

“I mean I don’t know how to not have fun. I’m dying and I’m having fun. And I’m going to keep having fun every day I have left. Because there’s no other way to play it,” he said.
Pausch is survived by his wife, Jai, and his three young children, Dylan, Logan and Chloe.

Headline Link: Carnegie Mellon professor Randy Pausch dies at 47

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Related Topic: Where to learn more about the famous ‘last lecture’ professor

Reference: Pausch’s book; terminal Illness


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