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SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 23: Actors Chadwick Boseman (L) and Lupita Nyong'o from Marvel Studios’ "Black Panther” attend the San Diego Comic-Con International 2016 Marvel Panel in Hall H on July 23, 2016 in San Diego, California. ©Marvel Studios 2016

On Tuesday (Sept. 8), Lupita Nyong’o broke her silence on her co-star and friend Chadwick Boseman’s death. The Black Panther star took to Instagram to honor Boseman.”I write these words from a place of hopelessness, to honor a man who had great hope. I am struggling to think and speak about my friend, Chadwick Boseman, in the past tense. It doesn’t make sense. The news of his passing is a punch to my gut every morning. I am aware that we are all mortal, but you come across some people in life that possess an immortal energy, that seem like they have existed before, that are exactly where they are supposed to always be-here! …that seem ageless…Chadwick was one of those people,” Nyong’o wrote.

“And he put in the work with all of us. He showed up to every rehearsal and training and shoot day with his game face on. He was absorbent. Agile. He set the bar high by working with a generosity spirit, creating an ego-free environment by sheer example, and he always had a warm gaze and a strong embrace to share.”

LOS ANGELES, CA – DECEMBER 05: (L-R) Lupita Nyong’o, Chadwick Boseman, and Danai Gurira speak onstage during The Hollywood Reporter’s Power 100 Women In Entertainment at Milk Studios on December 5, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter )

“His large hands would descend on my shoulder and give them a squeeze that relieved me of the tensions I did not realize I was holding. Chadwick’s hands were strong enough to carry the weight of film and free enough to clasp mine when I needed it. He was impeccable with his word. I never heard him complain- and there were definitely some things worth complaining about! I think he understood the power of words and chose to manifest power through his word. He used his mouth to build, too edify, never to break. And he used it to tell some regrettably lame dad jokes,” the actress continued.

“He practiced not going against himself. He seemed to really love himself; he expressed who he really was, even when it meant he didn’t smile when you thought he should. He accepted himself. And perhaps that’s why he was so capable of loving so many, so deeply. When I was around Chadwick, I wanted to be better, less petty, more purposeful…He was fueled by love, not fear. He moved quietly, deliberately and without imposing himself or his ideals on others. And yet he also made damn sure that his life meant something. He was unwavering about that. He cared so deeply about humanity, about Black people about his people. He activated our pride. By pushing through and working with such high purpose in the films he chose to commit to, Chadwick has made the infinite his home.”

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 06: In this handout photo provided by NBCUniversal, Presenters Chadwick Boseman, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong’o and Michael B. Jordan speak onstage during the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 06, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal via Getty Images)

According to Nyong’o, Boseman “did his own stunts, drummed at his own parties, danced many a night away, and mastered martial arts.” He also “loved, honored, and respected that body,” the actress said, stating that he did more “with it than most.” “In so doing, he took the risk to be alive, fully alive. So it seems that it was life that gave up on Chadwick long before Chadwick gave up on life,” Nyong’o wrote. “We are all charged by his work as a result, by his presence in our lives. His power lives on and will reverberate for generations to come. He used his life force to tell meaningful stories. And now we tell his… Chadwick’s death is something I can neither take in nor take in my stride right now. Perhaps with time…I’m going to take my time…and in his honor, I promise not to waste my time. I hope you will do the same.”

Glennisha Morgan is a Detroit-bred multimedia journalist and writer. She writes about intersectionality, hip-hop, pop culture, queer issues, race, feminism, and her truth. Follow her on Twitter @GlennishaMorgan.