John Ritter & Disneyland

In 2003, John Ritter sat down next to me on a Bug's Life Ride at Disneyland. A few days later, he died. I grew up on reruns of the TV show "Three's Company” and I watched "Bride of Chucky” on a loop when I was in high school - Ritter plays against type as a baddie police chief whose death pays tribute to Pinhead from the horror movie “Hellraiser.” And of course, his episode of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer” is one of my all time favorites - during the filming of the final confrontation between Buffy and Ted, both Sarah Michelle Gellar and Ritter were ill. Gellar had the flu whereas Ritter had food poisoning from the night before. When Ritter sat down next to me on a Bug's Life Ride, he looked really sick. He was breathing heavy and sweating profusely. What I remember most is that I was able to hear him breathing over the sounds of the ride. In less than a week, he would be dead from a tear in the aorta. September 11 of this year would’ve been his 70th birthday.