Darren Criss in Mourning After His Father Charles William Jr. Dies: 'Dad Lived an Extraordinary Life
"He lived his days the same way he loved his friends and family — with an unwavering sense of composure, compassion, generosity, and humility," the actor shared of his dad.
Darren Criss is in mourning after the death of his father, Charles William Criss Jr., who was better known as Bill.
The Glee alum, 33, announced the death in an Instagram post on Monday, writing in a statement, "Bill Criss has left the building. After many years of coping with a rare heart condition — which, true to his form, very few would have even been aware of — he finally checked out peacefully yesterday morning, surrounded by his loved ones."
Sharing photos of his dad through the years, Criss continued in the tribute, "Dad lived an extraordinary life. Anyone who ever met Bill Criss adored him instantly. He could talk to anyone about anything. Well-read and well-traveled, he made the world a better place wherever he went."
"He was as deliriously charming as he was relentlessly selfless; always putting other people first, making anybody who ever got into a conversation with him genuinely feel like they were the most incredible person in the room. And although he would have been the first to gracefully protest it, the simple truth is that he was in fact, every inch the exemplary man: a devoted husband, an outstanding father, a loving grandparent," he wrote.
"He lived his days the same way he loved his friends and family — with an unwavering sense of composure, compassion, generosity, and humility," Criss shared of his dad.
The actor went on to describe his father as "a true gentleman through and through" who was "a constant source of joy and inspiration" for him.
"I've spent most of my life trying to be like him, wanting to see and do all the incredible things he did — and I'm so grateful he was around to see me actually pull a few off," Criss wrote. "He was there for the greatest moments of my life, which of course, he always dressed up for. His kind blue eyes, big laugh, and infamous warm smile could not have been a better representation of who he was to his core."
He added, "I cherished him every day, and will forever."
In the tribute, Criss also shared a photo of his parents from his wedding with longtime love Mia Swier.
Criss and Swier, 33, married in February 2019 in a New Orleans ceremony.
The couple announced their engagement in January 2018, though Criss later admitted they’d been engaged for a bit before they made the announcement.
“Mia and I have had seven and a half years of fun, wacky, wonderful, CRAZY adventures together,” the Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story star wrote at the time. “And I’m happy to announce that we’re kicking those adventures up a notch. We’re goin for it. To boldly go where neither of us have gone before. Engage.”