Lizzo, Beyoncé honor Tina Turner: ‘You are strength and resilience’
After the passing of Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Tina Turner, a number of artists and dignitaries honored the artist, including Lizzo and Beyoncé.
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Samantha Weinstein, an actor who starred in the 2013 remake of “Carrie” and voiced roles in several cartoons, has died. She was 28.
Her father David Weinstein confirmed in a statement to USA TODAY Thursday that she died of ovarian cancer on May 14 at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, Canada.
“We’re overwhelmed with the outpouring of tributes to Samantha,” he said. “She led a very full, charmed and authentic life. She was very passionate about her art and worked up until her last days voicing animated characters and living as full a life as she possibly could.”
He also shared that the photos posted on Samantha’s unverified Instagram on May 15 were created by the actor herself to be used in her farewell post. The photos show her smiling and floating among the cosmos.
“After two and a half years of cancer treatment, and a lifetime of jet setting around the world, voicing a plethora of cartoon animals, making music, and knowing more about life than most people ever will, she is off on her next adventure,” the post reads.
Weinstein continued to live a full life while undergoing cancer treatment. She married Michael Knutson on October 29, 2022, and the two honeymooned in Japan.
In an article for Love What Matters, published last July, Weinstein, who also performed in a punk rock band called Killer Virgins, reflected on getting diagnosed with cancer at the age of 25 and falling in love with Knutson. The two went on their first date a week after her cancer diagnosis.
“First dates were nerve wracking enough, but I had just received some devastating news the week before- it was cancer. Talk about scaring a guy off!” she wrote. “Eyes fixed on the dirt ground of the dog park, I told him I’d been diagnosed with a rare ovarian germ-cell yolk sac tumor, and I’d be starting chemotherapy in just a few months. I held my breath, squeezed my eyes shut, and waited for the inevitable rejection… but it never came.”
She continued: “When my hormones were raging from IVF injections, we screamed at each other as we built an IKEA vanity and collapsed on the floor laughing. When my hair started falling out, we shaved our heads together. When my fingers were turning black from nerve damage, he took me out for ice cream and held the cone. He taught me love is selfless and reminded me to let others take care of me too.”
Weinstein wrote she and Knutson started talking about their wedding shortly after their first date. At their wedding, following their first dance to “Don’t Yah Feel Better?” by The Velveteins, they launched into a choreographed lightsaber duel.
“I said instead of a first dance we should have a lightsaber duel. 20 months, 10 rounds of chemo, and a lifetime’s worth of memories later, here we are,” she wrote on Instagram, adding that they were going for a “pretend-fighting-in-your-parents-basement vibe.”
Weinstein wrote in her Love What Matters piece that she also came to terms with her sexuality and gender identity following her cancer diagnosis, coming out as “bisexual/pansexual” and non-binary to her parents and to Knutson, all of whom accepted her.
“Something I’ve learned in the 18 months since I was first diagnosed, is the worst things in the world can turn out to be incredible blessings wrapped in sandpaper,” she wrote. “Getting cancer is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me, but in the strangest of ways it has also been the best thing. I’m still living with cancer, and with my parents since the future is uncertain (on the bright side, we’ve never been closer!). I continue to work in my dream career as a voice actor. I have more love in my life and for myself than I ever could have imagined, and I see every day as a gift. There are still days where I can’t stop crying – I’m in pain, or my thoughts get the better of me – but I’m learning to let my loved ones help carry the load. Okay, so maybe saying cancer is the best thing that ever happened to me is a bit of a stretch, but it certainly isn’t a witch’s curse either… and if it is, then that witch certainly has a sense of humor.”
More: Tina Turner, queen of rock ‘n’ roll, dies after long illness
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