Well, what an example to the disabled community, just by virtue of the fact that a human being who could barely move a muscle, who could not speak on his own became such a powerful communicator.
What an example that is to the world about what disability really means, and what the real abilities are inside the human mind, and what a person can do if they’re not willing to accept limitations which society puts upon them.
When I met him in 2007, after he was flying on the parabola aircraft, the zero-g aircraft, to get little doses of weightlessness, which is an extraordinary thing when you think about his condition, but he wasn’t willing to say, I can’t do that.
And there were people there that were willing to help him do that. And, at that time, I marveled at his ability to deal with disability.
Seven years later, I lost my arm, and one of the great examples I thought of as I brought myself back from that was Stephen Hawking. If a person who can’t move a muscle and can’t speak can figure out how to live a meaningful, fulfilling life an share his passion with the world, why can’t I?
So, you know, Stephen Hawking, wherever you are, I thank you.