Chadwick Boseman’s unexpected passing shattered the world. Tributes and tales about the Blank Panther leading man have been flooding social media since his death from colon cancer was announced on Friday, August 28. One story in particular, from former L.A. book clerk Trevor Reece, went viral on Twitter and it’s stolen our hearts. While working at Samuel French Film and Theatre Bookshop, which permanently shutdown in March, Trevor was touched by Chadwick’s incredible act of kindness.
“I got to meet @chadwickboseman once while I worked Samuel French film & theater bookshop,” Trevor tweeted. “He didn’t bring any attention to himself, just wanted to find a few new plays. But then this young actor, 20 something black man, comes up to him and starts talking.”
“30 mins later, they are still chatting,” he continued. “Chadwick taking the time to give this guy advice, speaking to what’s it’s like to be a black man in this industry, how to navigate it. The actor thanks him for his time and continues looking for books.” And then the down-to-earth celebrity did something that we will never forget.
“Chadwick comes up to the counter and buys the few plays he found, but then, he has another stack,” Trevor wrote. “They’re books he recommended to the actor and he wants to buy them. He then has me hold the books behind the counter for this guy and takes off. He didn’t want thanks. He just wanted to make sure this young man was taken care of and had access to resources he would need to succeed.”
“Chadwick Boseman was the King of Wakanda,” he concluded. “He was James Brown and Jackie Robinson. But above all that, he was a good man.” Indeed he was. The forever-43-year-old also wasn’t a stranger to the idea of paying it forward. During an appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon in 2018, the actor revealed that none-other-than Denzel Washington paid for him to do an exchange acting program at Oxford University in England.
Chadwick didn’t actually meet Denzel until the premiere of Black Panther, but their first exchange didn’t disappoint. “He [Denzel] was like, ‘I haven’t met you yet.’ And I said, ‘Yeah, I gotta tell you something... You paid for me to go to school,” Chadwick told the A-lister. “He said, ‘Oh, so that’s why I’m here. You owe me money.’”