"Those who knew him are not trying to make this tragedy about themselves. They are just trying to convey to you who Twitch was"
Andy Lassner, former producer for "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" is paying tribute to Stephen "tWitch" Boss following his death on Dec. 13.
The 55-year-old Emmy Award winner took to Instagram to share the impact Boss had on his life. Lassner, who worked with the dancer/DJ during their time on "Ellen," also pushed back at criticism that anyone sharing tributes is trying to "make this tragedy about themselves."
"So many people on social media are posting pictures of themselves with Twitch. Talking about their close friendships with him," Lassner began his heartfelt tribute alongside a black and white photo of Boss. "Talking about the texts they exchanged with him just last week. Talking about the conversation they once had with him. The thing is — it's all true. It's all real."
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He continued, "Those who knew him are not trying to make this tragedy about themselves. They are just trying to convey to you who Twitch was."
Lassner called Boss a selfless person who made all those who crossed his path "the most important person in the world."
"He was our flame. Our joy. Our dancer," he explained. "There was a heavy burden that none of us realized he was carrying. He must have been so tired. But we didn't know because he never wanted it to be about him. Ever."
Rather than trying to gain clout through their tributes, Lassner said that the multiple posts serve as outlets for Boss' friends to share their grief.
"So now we can either spend all of our time wondering why and how and never being satisfied with the answers we imagine," he continued. "Or we can focus on being grateful for the gift he gave us by allowing us to take light from his flame. The thing is that light still burns in us. All of us."
The father of three concluded his post, "Let's try and share that light with the people we love. It's really all we can do. And that's enough. It's more than enough."
"tWitch" first broke out on "So You Think You Can Dance" before becoming Ellen DeGeneres' DJ on her daily talk show.
Boss died by suicide at the age of 40, according to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner. He married fellow dancer Allison Holker in 2013, before Boss adopted Holker's daughter Weslie, 14. The two went on to welcome to additional children: son Maddox, 6, and daughter Zaia, 3. Boss and Holker celebrated their 9-year wedding anniversary just four days before his death.
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression or has had thoughts of harming themselves or taking their own life, get help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress.