GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. -- In the astounding loss of actor Robin Williams, Minnesotans are standing up to remember one of the greatest comedic wonders to ever take the stage.
"The first thing I noticed was how kind, how kind his eyes were and how kind he was," said Sarah Drew, Acme Comedy Company manager, who met Robin Williams in 2008 when he wanted Minnesota as his audience to practice new material.
He left his signature on the walls of the Acme green room, but what's everlasting Drew said is the laughter left behind.
"He did three nights here and sold out all three shows in 30 minutes, a record, he crashed our system and people went nuts," said Drew.
Sen. Al Franken crossed paths with Williams while working on Saturday Night Live. The two did United Service Organizations tours together as well.
"Robin was a friend, and I am going to miss him as millions and millions will," said Franken. "Obviously, very sad. No one could see the irony of a guy who made so many people laugh and helped people publicly and privately, succumb to mental illness in a way he was alone at the end, and that was unbearably sad."
Williams also showed Minnesotans his true character two years ago by attending the Starkey Hearing Foundation Gala. He said Starkey's charitable efforts to help those hear is a "powerful, powerful thing."
The power of his heart appeared in every role.
Mark Proksch, is known for his role of "Nate" from The Office, but the La Crosse, Wis. native and former Twin Cities resident witnessed Williams' improvisational genius when he starred with him in the upcoming holiday film, "Merry Friggin' Christmas."
"I play a police officer that keeps pulling over Robin and his family. You really did work at trying to not laugh to keep the take because it was so funny," said Proksch.
Proksch said Williams' greatest performance was that of a friend, with a genuine interest in others. Williams offered to help Proksch with a pilot show and help many in the cast of the upcoming movie.
Minnesota comedian Lizz Winstead also publicly remembered Williams for helping jump start her career.
"Part of that I think is you grow up watching him and when you get to meet him he is exactly as you imagined him, so you feel like you knew him your whole life. Also, he was one of those people that was genuinely interested in you and your story and that's across the board," said Proksch.
And that wasn't an act. For audiences in Minnesota and everywhere, there's no replacement for the man who filled hearts from his seat on the stage.
"We were honored to have him," said Drew.