On Friday, Aug. 28, reps for the Black Panther actor confirmed that he passed away following a four-year battle with colon cancer. "It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman," a statement, posted to the star's social media, read in part. "Chadwick was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016, and battled with it these last 4 years as it progressed to stage IV. A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all, and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much."
The statement also noted that the 43-year-old actor died at home surrounded by his loved ones, including his wife, Taylor Simone Ledward.
As news of Boseman's death emerged on Friday evening, tributes from fans, friends and former co-stars began to pour in. Gad, who starred alongside Boseman in the 2017 movie Marshall, took to social media to honor his friend by sharing one of his final texts from the actor.
Alongside a screenshot of the text, Gad wrote, "Breaking my twitter silence to share some beauty. This was one of my final texts from the brilliant & once-in-lifetime talent, @chadwickboseman- take this in & celebrate life. He knew how precious every moment was. Tonight the Heavens received one of its most powerful angels."
In the text, Boseman encouraged Gad to "catch the rain" in a moving message. "If you are in Los Angeles, you woke up this morning to the rare and peaceful sound of a steady precipitation," Boseman's text message began. "If you're like me, maybe you looked at the week's forecast and found that it's supposed to rain for three straight days; not without breaks of sunlight and reprieves of moist gloom, but yeah it's gonna be coming down like cats and dogs."
"Great. We're stuck inside these damn quarantines because of the COVID, and now we can't even get no sun in Cali. Come on now!" Boseman continued. "But now that the rain has stopped and today's storm has cleared, I urge you to go outside and take a DEEP breath. Notice how fresh the air is right now, after our skies have had a 3 week break from the usual relentless barrage of fumes from bumper to bumper LA commuters, and now today's rain has given the City of Angels a long overdo and much-needed shower."
Boseman advised Gad to "inhale and exhale this moment" and to "thank God for the unique beauties and wonders" of the day.
"We should take advantage of every moment we can to enjoy the simplicity of God's creation, whether it be clear skies and sun or clouded over with gloom," he went on to write. "And hey, if the air is this clear right now, and it does rain tomorrow, I might even put jars and bins out and catch the rain. Throw that in the water filter and I have a water more alkaline than any bottled brand out there."
Gad also posted a tearful video to his Instagram in which he reflected on his friendship with Boseman. Watch above.