Charlton Heston died Saturday (April 5, 2008) at his Beverly Hills home, said family spokesman Bill Powers. In 2002, he had been diagnosed with symptoms similar to those of Alzheimer’s disease.
Heston was one of the last true Hollywood icons starring in epic roles. In a career spanning 60 years, Heston provided the world with a seemingly inexhaustible roster of resolute screen heroes, from Michelangelo to Moses, El Cid to Judah Ben-Hur. It was these roles and his acting talents that elevated him to a larger than life persona.
Never one to rest on his laurels Heston used his fame to became politically active. Long before it became popular he became active in the civil rights movement, speaking out against racism and became a dedicated supporter of the second amendment. From 1998 to 2003 Charlton was president of the National Rifle Association (NRA). At the helm of the NRA he was a tireless promoter and protector of the right to own and carry firearms that never shied away from facing difficult tasks and controversy.
Despite the rhetoric attacks from the lefties calling him a “dangerous gun nut”, “aid to gun crime”, he maintained his unwavering support for the gun owners and outdoor sport to the end. Heston is one of a handful man that has done more to protect our rights than anyone else and for this we, the gun owners and hunters, have to be thankful.
Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association of America, made the following statement to the passing of Charlton Heston.
Today, my heart is heavy with the loss of Charlton Heston. America has lost a great patriot. The Second Amendment has lost a faithful friend. So have I, and so have four million NRA members and eighty million gun owners. And so has every American who cares about the Bill of Rights, individual liberty, and Freedom.
My heart is heavy, but not without a sense of pride. Pride in a man who devoted his life to his profession with grace and dignity. Pride in an American who devoted himself to civil rights, to correcting injustices around him, and to standing up for what he knew was right. Pride in a friend who stood with me and stood with fellow NRA members to preserve our freedom for future generations. Pride in a patriot who believed with every fibre of his being that our Bill of Rights is the foundation of our freedom that makes Americans singular among the masses of nations.
And now, Charlton Heston has passed that duty to us - the next generation. I am as proud to continue his cause as I am to have known him as my friend.
But today, my thoughts cannot leave the Heston family. They have always had my utmost respect and admiration and, today, they have my deepest sympathy and most earnest prayers, and they will always have my friendship.
Rest in peace Charlton. Thank you for everything you have done to make this world a better place to be. May the ones you left behind proudly carry on the legacy in your spirit. You have shown all of us what one person can achieve if they are dedicated and believe in what is right.
Tags: Charton Heston, National Rifle Association