Through the years, I’d heard from colleagues in the movie business that Ebert was a generous guy and a tireless champion of independent film. But it wasn’t until I started reading his pithy reflections on culture, politics and the fragility of life, along with 800,000 other Twitter followers, that I got a sense of his grace. When I heard the news of his passing today, I literally gasped out loud, as if a good friend had died. I’d never met the man, but I feel like I’m a better person for his having walked the earth. And BTW, I totally agree with his sentiment expressed above.