August 31st, 2009
06:37 PM ET
When I first heard that Adam Goldstein, a.k.a. DJ AM had died I was shocked and truly saddened. I was lucky enough to hear him spin at a few parties in LA and he was extremely talented. I didn’t know him personally, but for some reason this celebrity death hit a chord with me.
Since first hearing of his passing I have been trying to figure out why that is. I think I may have figured out why: even in Hollywood, we all love to root for the underdog and DJ AM certainly qualified. He had a tough life, speaking openly about his troubled childhood, his battle with obesity (he had gastric bypass after his weight ballooned over 300 lbs), and was open about his battle with addiction. Goldstein went from being a troubled kid to playing the hottest clubs and dating Hollywood starlets. Then there was the plane crash. If ever there was a defining moment in a celebrity’s public life, this was his. He literally walked away from a plane crash that killed four people-there is no question he had overcome a lot in his 36 years.
The thing about DJ AM that I found so personally appealing was that he managed to be a part of the Hollywood scene with out being a ‘scenester’. He dated Hollywood starlets but didn’t seem like a ‘hanger on’ because he had his own career. Most of all what I liked most about DJ AM is that he wanted to help others. After all he had been through- the weight, the addictions, the plane crash- the thing that he was working on when he died was a series with MTV about helping teenagers suffering from addiction. I don’t know what happened in his home on the day he died and I don’t want to speculate on what caused his death, but clearly he battled a lot of demons. I find it admirable that this was a guy who clearly was successful and instead of sitting back and letting life pass him by, he sought ways to help others try to climb out of the throws of addiction that he had spent so many years fighting.
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