I first heard Dr. Sacks on Radio Lab about 10 years ago and was instantly drawn to the empathy and humor that emanated from his voice and his word. I have been enamored with the man and his writing from that time until now. My condolences to his loved ones. In grieving we know we have loved... Thank you, Dr. Sacks, for sharing yourself with us all. Peace be with you as you travel the universe.
I feel as though I have lost a close friend, or a family member. I had been meaning to write a letter to Dr. Sacks to express how much his writings have meant to me, but sadly, it's too late for that now.
I would be hard pressed to choose one book or New Yorker article that moved me more than the others. I remember his essay in the New Yorker about prosopagnosia - again, I never got around to writing to him that I have the opposite: I never forget a face, even if it's that of a waitress I encountered briefly 8 years ago. But I never remember a name. Just another example of how Dr. Sacks revealed more layers of neurobiology to us all.
I'm so glad he had a chance to write "On The Move". I felt as though he was sitting in the room with me, chatting. Then again, all of his books were like that.
I count myself as very fortunate to have attended an informal lunchtime seminar that he gave at UCLA sometime in the mid-eighties. He came across with all the warmth, empathy, and even impishness one would expect.
My sincerest sympathies go to Billy and Kate. I know that you both realize how lucky you are to have been a part of his heart.
Dr. Sacks was among our greatest scientists and foremost public intellectuals. A new Renaissance man, he bequeathed to us both important findings and pellucide prose. When he revealed, in a New Yorker article, that in his youth he had been an episodic druggie, this made him seem even more human and accessible. Our loss is inexpressible.
Let me start by saying I'm so sorry Dr. Sacks and his partner didn't have more time to share together. Also, I would've liked to have been his friend, given the chance. I wish I could've met him or listened to one of his lectures in person, at the very least. What I would've preferred is having him over for dinner to talk books and ideas - either his own, or one of his choice. Obviously his partner could come too. I'm a thinker, and a questioner, and that drives some people in my life crazy, but if I don't allow my mind to explore, I'd go crazy. Dr. Sacks made me think, and that is his gift to me.
Oliver Sacks said it best, “When people die, they cannot be replaced. They leave holes that cannot be filled, for it is the fate—the genetic and neural fate—of every human being to be a unique individual, to find his own path, to live his own life, to die his own death.”
Though I did not know Oliver Sacks personally, I feel that I did. I have felt sadness and a lingering melancholy since his death, yet a huge appreciating that at least I knew him. I have been playing Bach…he'd like that. RIP
Oliver Sacks was a great doctor and he helped mankind very much, with his studies and therapeutical interventions. It is a pity that now we have to live without him.
I am so infinitely sorry.
RIP, Dr. Sacks. We will miss you always.
There are so many things-of wonder, of respect, of incredulousness, and all emotions in between, that one thinks of when speaking of Dr. Sacks. Rather than go on and on, I would like to thank him, for his care, his honest, deep-seated respect and concern for his patients, and for allowing us to glimpse his day to day work.
Thank you for inspiring me to pursue a position working in mental health; as it is through your books, your excitement and your showing us the inner most corners of our minds has led many of us on our own paths through the mind. Rest well, Dr. Sacks...you have earned this peace.
Our thanks and respect.
Oh, the power of stories. I so relished opportunities to share case studies from Dr. Sacks's books with my students in introductory psychology. It blew their minds! And sharing those stories never failed to deepen in me an appreciation for the mystery and staggering capacity of the human brain and mind. His stories of music gone wrong in the brain had a hold on me too - they highlighted my love of music and its performance (Bach may be favorite, too) and how I take this precious gift for granted.
I didn't know Dr. Sacks personally, yet I feel a personal loss. Who will tell me stories now? I'm so glad to see Dr. Sacks established a foundation to keep alive this valuable tradition. I can't help but think that we are a better, wiser, gentler people for hearing and telling our lives in stories.
Dr. Sacks left a mark in our time and for times to come. May warm memories of him sustain us all - but especially his partner, family, and many friends - during the days and years to come.
Dr. Sacks was such a great man and physician who bought such humility and humanity to the fledgling studies of understanding the human brain. We will always be grateful.
Oliver fue para mi un referente claro de las cosas que son importantes en la vida. Como hay que vivir la vida, las cosas que hay que exigir a uno mismo y compartir amor con toda la gente que te rodea.
Cuando me divorcie me refugie en sus libros y lo que aprendía me hacia ver un mundo nuevo.
Un cariñoso saludo.
Your books and your views about the medical practice were the main cause that lead me to study Medicine. Thank you for that.
What I appreciate most about Dr. Sacks's work is his ability to notice the entirety of the human experience. He furthered Science and entertained people by describing his work. He leaves behind much wonderful work and a special Oliver Sacks place in the human psyche.
Dear Dr. Sacks,
If there is an afterlife, I hope that you arrived at your new office with more notebooks and patients to see.
Without your wonderful books that I read for many years now (all of them), and some many times, I would have been the poorer for understanding the human condition (including some aspect of mine) and its incredible complexity. I am sure that for many other people (like me) you opened a door to wonder and understanding, leading to compassion and tolerance.
An event of synchronity brought me the news of your passing and I subsequently watched a 1992 interview in New York.
I believe you had an extraordinairy gift to analyse and reflect on human life with compassion, wondering about both human and universal constructs, conciousness, nature and existential questions that are as old as humanity itself.
You have been a great student and even greater teacher of men.
I am glad that you left so much work behind and hope you that all your questions have now been answered.
Dear Dr. Sacks,
Thank you for your voluminous contribution to humankind by persisting, with clarity, compassion, exponential brilliance and infinite curiosity, to delve into the vastness of the mind along the journey of our collective life trip on this our planet earth.
May you rest in peace continuing to hear the music in your present realm.
Read Uncle Tungsten and thought it was among the best books I ever
read!! Thank you Oliver and may you rest in peace!!
Having to pull over to reflect and to feel is hardly predictable. Your essence accompanied me in more ways than I can convey. I am so happy you experienced the freedoms that are our right. Now the ultimate freedom, that which our small brains cannot understand. I will always bring you with me.
Everyone at Tourettes Action in the United Kingdom was very saddened to hear that Oliver Sacks died of cancer on Sunday 30th of August. Oliver Sacks, --a Neurologist and prolific writer--was a patron of Tourettes Action and dedicated himself through his work to reduce the stigma of mental and neurological illness, supporting a compassionate approach to neurology and psychiatry. He leaves behind him a legacy of great work in the field of Tourette Syndrome and we are incredibly grateful for all he has done to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of TS
Thank you Oliver for everything. I love you.