You probably didn’t know his name, but likely would think “I’ve seen that guy before.” when you saw him in one of his many movie or television appearances. But those screen appearances are not the reason I mention the passing of Geoffrey Lewis. It is more personal than that.

Geoffrey was a voice actor, a very talented voice actor. His stories reached out and touched me. I saw it happen to others as well. I remember my sister breaking into tears when I played “Horses” for her. The same thing happened to a coworker when I was Program Director at KKFM in Colorado Springs.

Geoffrey was the writer and voice actor behind Celestial Navigations. As I heard the story on that, Geoffrey happened into a circle of tribesmen in Afghanistan years ago. They would meet around a fire once or twice a year and tell stories. This inspired Lewis to tell stories, in a very unique way. With a couple of keyboard players to provide enhancement to his immensely talented spoken word.

I would listen to his story “Ice” while driving through blizzards. I would turn my sons and very close friends on to his work in the same way you would share an illegal activity or your favorite song ever with someone you really like and respect.

His work was very special to me, inspirational in fact. He was doing what I would love to do.

I urge you to listen to his works.

If I may, I would suggest starting with Rock And Roll, which represents veterans very well. A little comic relief that references Easter very well in The Janitor. Ice is about doing what is right, no matter what. Inspirational on a few levels. Then, as I referred to, Horses, that just may bring you to tears.

If possible, listen alone, with no distractions, or with someone who can keep their distractions to themselves.

Geoffrey Lewis, you were with me on cross country trips, frozen nights in whiteout conditions, camping with a close friend or in my offices at home and work, bringing people to tears. Thank you for the stories and the inspiration. There is now a hole in my life. He died of a heart attack while exercising at 79.

Rest In Peace storyteller, you’re going Home.

Kevin Winter, Getty Images