Patton Oswalt Pens Heartfelt Tribute on the Anniversary of Wife's Death: 'It's Awful But It's Not Fatal'
By Lynda Brendish
It's been one year since Patton Oswalt's wife, 46-year-old true crime writer Michelle McNamara, died suddenly and unexpectedly in her sleep due to a combination of prescription drugs and an undiagnosed heart condition.
Understandably, the year since has been a particularly trying one for Oswalt, who is now sole parent to the couple's 8-year-old daughter, Alice.
On Friday, the anniversary of Michelle's death, the 48-year-old comedian took to Facebook to look back over the past year and share some heartfelt words, along with photos, including one of a wooden trinket box Oswalt had made to hold keepsakes of their relationship.
"It's awful, but it's not fatal. That's the dispatch I'm sending back from exactly one year into this shadow-slog," Oswalt begins. He goes on to describe the day, one year before, when his wife died.
"There was an art show at Alice's school in the afternoon and my wife and I were going to go, get dragged around the room by Alice as she chattered about her artwork and the work of her classmates. Except I came back down into the house and the life I knew was gone," he writes.
"I'm one year into this new life -- one I never imagined," his message continues. "I can imagine some pretty pessimistic and dark contingencies, some stomach-freezing 'what-ifs.' But not this one. This one had such a flat, un-poetic immediacy. The world gazes at you like a hunger but indifferent reptile when you’re widowed."
The Ratatouille star says he finally removed his wedding ring and put it in the wooden trinket box along with love notes and other keepsakes that brought back happy memories.
"Michelle brought me nothing but happiness. You see it in our faces, that picture between the two pics of the box. That was taken literally a month after we started going out. Look at us. We knew this was it."