Winston Duke is honoring the late Chadwick Boseman.
The 33-year-old actor took to Instagram on Monday, Aug. 31 to share a touching tribute to the 43-year-old star.
"How do I start to honor a man who I saw as a giant in many ways; with whom I thought I had so much more time," Duke began. "I am absolutely devastated by the loss of my friend and hero, Chadwick Boseman..."
Duke, who acted alongside Boseman in Black Panther and in Avengers movies, explained he feels "sick" over Boseman's passing.
"I'm in pain and I can't belive [sic] he's gone," he continued. "Chadwick was a lightning rod for me... he gave me direction..."
He then recalled watching Boseman's portrayal of Jackie Robinson in the 2013 movie 42 and saying, "I could be like THIS guy."
"I knew I belonged because I could see myself in you," Duke continued. "That's what heroes do... they seem familiar because they make it possible for us to see our potential best selves demonstrated through them... Through seeing Chad's work, I was able to say, 'I could be just like you one day.'"
He also remembered meeting Boseman in-person for the first time at an audition for Black Panther and having Boseman acknowledge him and his dream by saying, "He's ready!"
"Man, your words that day made me feel like my dream was finally real!" Duke wrote. "Chadwick then proceeded to show us collectively every day on set what it was to be a leading man. Not only through his work but by how he welcomed and created a space for all of us to feel safe, open and bold ... You even worked with me 1 on 1, on our scenes, so that we could get it right, well before the day of the filming."
Near the end of the post, Duke expressed his gratitude for Boseman.
"Chadwick, Thank you!" he wrote. "Chadwick, you are the best...you are me and I'm you and we are all one! Thanks for being someone I could look up to on and off screen ... our calm confidence was inspiring and exemplary. Thanks for sharing with me... you go ahead ...you did your job and did it well! You will NEVER be forgotten. Your heroism is now legend. We'll carry the load and honor your legacy, the rest of the way! Bless King! #chadwickboseman #wakandaforever."
Boseman died Friday, Aug. 28 following a private battle with cancer. He was 43 years old. A statement posted to his official social media accounts revealed Boseman was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016 and battled it for four 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 continued. "From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and several more, all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy. It was the honor of his career to bring King T'Challa to life in Black Panther."
The statement noted Boseman died at his home, "with his wife and family by his side."
"The family thanks you for your love and prayers," the statement read, "and asks that you continue to respect their privacy during this difficult time."
After news of Boseman's death spread, several colleagues, friends and fans honored him on social media. Read tributes from more Black Panther cast members below.
A look back at his greatest roles can also be viewed here.