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Locals mourn Carrie Fisher's death - KOAM TV 7

Locals mourn Carrie Fisher's death

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JOPLIN, MISSOURI -

For Star Wars fans, the passing of actress Carrie Fisher, fan's real-life Princess Leia, is a thing of tragedy.

Fisher died in a Los Angeles hospital following an episode of cardiac arrest. She was 60 years old.

"Star Wars has come back in and we're able to share it with our generation of kids. We grew up with it and fell in love with it and now new generations learned who Princess Leia was and now she's been taken away from them," James Kave, president of the local children's charity "Kaveman's Kids" said.

Kaveman's Kids frequently dress up in Star Wars costumes and are a presence at many local events, like the Big Red Shoe 5K.

Beyond acting, Fisher was known as a champion for speaking out about mental health. The actress struggled with bipolar disorder. Kaveman's Kids board member Amber Hoffman also works at the Ozark Center, and finds Fisher's outspoken manner about the issue: inspiring.\

"People back then thought that mental health was only visible, physically and not inside. So her idea of the mentality and the way it affects others is a huge role in where we've come today and being able to grow," Hoffman said.

Fisher's death marks the second in 2016 of Star Wars actors. Kenny Baker who played R2D2 passed away in August.

For Carrie Givens who dresses as a Star Wars imperial officer for Kaveman's Kids, her favorite thing about Fisher was her fearlessness.

"I started thinking how horrible this is because she was such a wonderful role model. A fearless role model, really, for women and just everyone. It's just really sad," Givens said.

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