Helping women with chronic illnesses

A Tribute to Dr. Randy Pausch (The Last Lecture)

On July 25, 2008, a very special man named Dr. Randy Pausch passed on.

His legacy will remain in the hearts and minds of the millions of people he touched around the world.

You may have seen Randy Pausch on Oprah or watched his interview with Diane Sawyer.

Or you may not have had the pleasure of hearing this inspirational man speak about life, living, and dying with dignity and grace.

For those who have not had the privilege of seeing “The Last Lecture”, I’m going to include the video of it here. It was posted on YouTube after he made his last lecture at Carnegie Mellon University (where he was a professor) and it since then became well-known around the world.

First there is a brief video clip tribute to Dr. Pausch. Then Dr. Pausch’s the “Last Lecture video” is about an hour and 16 minutes.

I assure you that if can set aside the time to watch his lecture it will be well worth your time!

First, here is the tribute video that was posted on YouTube after his death by “khoof7”. It was posted on YouTube on July 25, 2008 (running time 1 minute and 20 seconds):

The full video of “The Last Lecture” captured the attention of people around the world. I hope you’ll find it as inspirational as I did… and as millions of others around the world have as well.

Here is the description listed on YouTube of the “Last Lecture” video (posted by “carnegiemellonu”:

Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch (Oct. 23, 1960 – July 25, 2008) gave his last lecture at the university Sept. 18, 2007, before a packed McConomy Auditorium. In his moving presentation, “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams,” Pausch talked about his lessons learned and gave advice to students on how to achieve their own career and personal goals. For more, visit

Here is the video of “The Last Lecture”. Its running time is 1 hour and 16 minutes and it is worth making time to watch it! It may well change the way you look at your life!!

Clearly, Randy Pausch’s story touched many lives and inspired millions of people to live with purpose, to make a positive difference in others’ lives, and to have fun while doing it. The legacy he leaves behind for his family is tremendous.

He painstakingly videotaped large amounts of pictures so that his young children will be able to see the videos as they get older and can better understand his life and his death.

Randy’s wife was interviewed by Diane Sawyer as well. Jai Pausch’s grace and eloquence in the face of such a tragic diagnosis/prognosis was awe-inspiring. Clearly Randy and his wife were soul mates.

He obviously did everything he could to prepare his family for what would happen after he passed on, as anyone who saw the moving interview with Diane Sawyer can attest to.

His bravery, positive attitude in the face of terminal illness, and determination to leave a meaningful legacy for his family (and for the world) will live on.

Randy Pausch made a meaningful, hopeful, positive impact on the world.

Here is the link for the Diane Sawyer interview with Randy Pausch:

ABC News interview

The same link as above will take you to video of Randy Pausch delivering the commencement address to the Class of 2008 at Carnegie Mellon University before his death.


Here is Randy Pausch’s website for more information about pancreatic cancer and his inspirational battle with it. It includes more video clips, including his absolutely riveting testimony before Congress:

Congressional testimony

He really made an impact on so many people!

This article was posted by Jeanne via “Jeanne’s Endo Blog” at

This post was written by Jeanne at Copyright © Jeanne — All rights reserved.

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Reading: A Tribute to Dr. Randy Pausch (The Last Lecture)


1 Jeanne { 07.28.08 at 4:05 am }


I came across a blog today that had posted a clip of Randy Pausch’s appearance on Oprah.

Here is the link if you are interested in viewing it. It’s about 10 minutes long:


2 Mckay K { 07.28.08 at 10:44 am }

Dr. Pausch gave us so much life!

I have seen his last lecture, I saw him on Oprah, I saw his interview with Diane Sawyer, and I saw a tearful Diane Sawyer announce his death to the world on last Friday morning.

The news sort of takes your breath for a moment and then you think-Dr Randy Pausch would not want me to wast a minute of my life crying.

He wanted the world to learn to live each day to the fullest.

I have no complaints today!

3 Jeanne { 07.28.08 at 1:01 pm }

Mckay k,

Dr. Randy Pausch was a very special man in many ways. His messages of hope, optimism, coping with adversity, living, and loving have something to teach us all.

His way of managing to find purpose in everything and to NOT waste precious time on the things that really don’t matter was so important!!

I believe his focused use of time and energy are a big part of what really resonated with so many people in the world! This man knew how to have fun! Can’t we all learn something from that alone?

He truly believed in living each day to the fullest. His words were eloquent and inspiring, to say the least!

As they say, “actions speak louder than words”. He didn’t just TALK about living life to the fullest. He absolutely ACTED on the words that inspired so many and actually found a way to implement what he talked about into his daily life.

Reflecting on the profound impact Randy Pausch has had on so many, it is difficult to take anything for granted. His grace and dignity in managing to keep his positive attitude until the end of his life are lessons for us all. The legacy he left behind will help his family cope with his loss.

My thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. His wife Jai was just so amazing when Diane Sawyer interviewed her. Her extraordinarily positive attitude was a perfect match for her husband’s. Clearly they were soul mates and Jai has the grace and courage to get through this tragic loss and to support her children through it. She and Randy were so clearly on the same page about things and they BOTH put such loving thought into how to handle the impact of this on their children. Their courage is truly admirable!

I feel extreme gratitude to have been able to hear Randy Pausch’s messages and have the opportunity to reflect on it.

Dr. Randy Pausch made a positive, lasting impact on the world with his words AND his actions…

His approach provides a role model for people to follow when determining one’s life’s purpose and how to best use the time and talents available to make the best out of life and not to dwell on the negative.

I believe anyone who invests the time to familiarize themselves with this story comes away a better person simply for having seen how Randy Pausch managed the extraordinary challenges one can be faced during the process of living AND of managing the difficult and emotional process of dying with dignity and grace.

From everything I saw about his story, it is clear that he kept his positive outlook and dignity right to the end. He was really a class act!

4 Mckay K { 07.29.08 at 5:13 am }

Jeanne, I totally agree with you! I don’t know how my post came across, but it was not to diminish, in anyway, his contribution to the world. He was truly a remarkable man.

And, I thought it was so Jeanne to write this post. Jeanne is always thinking of others. Jeanne is always helping others. So It was not surprising that you would write such a heart felt post about his life and death.

I was attempting to say that, for me, I thought he would want ME to celebrate today, as he would have.
I can always find something to complain about, but not today.

Today, when I think of him, I see his courage, I see his face, I see him pick up his wife and carry her off stage following a commencement speech he had just finished giving, and I think of his children who will also get through this. They will get through this because he prepared them for his death (as much as anyone can prepare a child for death).

Your blog reminded me that he had gone as far as he could go. But, I am still here. If he, knowing that his life was quickly coming to an end , could illustrate and articulate the need for us to live each day to the fullest, it would be a travesty not to.

I returned to your site to post that Diane Sawyer is moderating a special 20/20 on Dr. Pausch’s life Tuesday evening. And to encourage your readers to watch it.

5 Jeanne { 07.29.08 at 1:39 pm }

Mckay k,

I knew EXACTLY what you meant about “no complaints” and WISH I had time to respond more fully now! As usual, I’m about to head out the door for a doctor’s appointment so I’ll need to respond later but I wanted to get your news about Diane Sawyer’s special posted so that, hopefully, people can see it tonight. (When you said Tuesday you meant this Tuesday, right??) I have to run now, I’m afraid, but I knew exactly what you were saying and YOU clearly are an example of living just the way Randy Pausch advocated for: making the most of every moment. I’ll post more later.


6 Jeanne { 07.29.08 at 9:20 pm }

Mckay k,

I absolutely knew EXACTLY what you meant when you said, “He wanted the world to learn to live each day to the fullest. I have no complaints today!”

That is exactly the kind of attitude that I believe Randy Pausch would want everyone to strive for. As he put it, one can choose to be “a Tigger” or “an Eeyore”. As he said, he chose to be “a Tigger”.

Your positive attitude in the face of adversity is very admirable. Despite multiple chronic illnesses, you are writing a blog which helps so many people:

I believe the work you’re doing on your blog is an example of what Randy Pausch spoke of… You keep a positive “Tigger” attitude despite adversity.

Your post came across just fine! I know you would never say anything to diminish Randy Pausch’s contribution to the world.

As far as the part you said after that, I’m not sure what to say.

My purpose for posting the Randy Pausch entry was to get the word out to as many people as possible about his work, his life, and his legacy.

While many have heard of his story, there are plenty of others who have not.

I think it’s important to reflect on such a remarkable life because I believe everyone can learn something from Randy Pausch’s story.

I absolutely agree Randy Pausch would want you to celebrate YOU, as you said. I hear what you are saying.

Also, I agree that he did everything humanly possible to prepare his family for his death.

Yes, you are still here. Every day counts! I agree with your whole outlook on things.

THANK YOU so much for bringing the ABC news special tonight to our attention!! I had not heard of it and am grateful that you posted about it here.

As you may have seen by now, I created a separate post today to, hopefully, generate even more awareness about the show tonight.

To me, hearing such an inspirational story adds perspective and helps a person to better find what his/her purpose is in life.

Thanks again for mentioning tonight’s show!!

7 Remembering Dr. Randy Pausch — { 07.30.09 at 12:21 am }

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