Ryan Reynolds Pays Tribute to Late 'Deadpool' Fan With Heartfelt Birthday Message
By Raphael Chestang
Ryan Reynolds honored a late friend over the weekend, on what would have been his 14th birthday.
Connor McGrath, a Deadpool fan from Canada, died in April after a three-year bout with cancer, but not before winning over Reynolds, who starred as the "merc with a mouth" in February's Deadpool standalone film.
"My friend Connor McGrath would have been 14 years old tomorrow," Reynolds wrote Saturday on Instagram. "He isn't here now, but he stuck around long enough to make everyone he knew fall over laughing. Right up to the very end he was as quick with a joke as he was with a hug.
"@makeawishamerica brought us together and nothing -- not even a cowardly, f**kfaced thing called cancer can take that away," he continued. "Sending his amazing parents, Kim and Gerald McGrath crisp high fives and bear-hugs of love. Anything you do to support your local Make-A-Wish Foundation is alright with me."
While McGrath was undergoing cancer treatment at an Alberta hospital in January, Reynolds, who hails from Vancouver, personally screened the movie with him.
"Of course, the Deadpool was right up his alley, because Connor's the funniest, potty-mouthed Canadian mercenary I've ever met," Reynolds posted to Facebook in February. "We met because he loved Deadpool. In a certain sense he WAS Deadpool. Or at least everything Deadpool aspires to be; balancing pain, fearlessness, love and a filthy (filthy!) sense of humor in one body. I wish he could've stuck around a lot longer."
Reynolds isn't the first Marvel superhero to bring some in-person joy to kids battling cancer. Last year Chris Pratt and Chris Evans teamed up to visit children in treatment for cancer near Boston, Massachusetts. Watch the video below for more.