AceShowbiz - Anna Wintour has penned an essay to remember fashion designer Oscar de la Renta who passed away on Monday, October 20 at the age of 82. In the piece published on Tuesday morning, the Vogue editor-in-chief shares moments she had with him including their meeting during a dinner last summer and his last days.
"He told me he felt he had had the most amazing life and he was not afraid," Wintour says. "This strength must have been with him in the hospital last week when he made the decision to turn off treatment; it was not the quality of life he wanted... His last words to me were I love you, and I said I love you back."
According to Wintour, the iconic designer was always positive despite his cancer diagnosis in 2006. "He never once complained about his illness, always positive, always looking forward. He was a tireless philanthropist - he and Annette supported so many charities, some quite small and under the radar - and the most generous friend," she recalls. "Dinners in Paris when he was designing for Balmain would start with the two of us and end up twenty or more."
"He always said accept your friends for who they are, not for who you want them to be. Oscar was everything you could want a friend to be," she says. "He was happy dining with the rich and famous, for sure, but equally happy playing dominoes with his devoted staff."
Many celebrities and public figures such as Gloria Estefan, Alyssa Milano, La Toya Jackson and Piper Perabo mourned the death of the designer on social media. "My all-time favorite designer has passed away. Oscar, it was an honor to wear your creations and to know you. In loving memory," Taylor Swift wrote on Instagram.
"It was an enormous privilege to be dressed by Mr. de la Renta for so many occasions over the last 15 years," Sarah Jessica Parker additionally told Us Weekly. "And especially meaningful to collaborate with him for this year's Met Gala. I will always be grateful that he allowed me to honor him by embroidering his name in Scarlett on the hem of his glorious dress. He was an inspiration and a man like no other."
"Oscar de la Renta was a pioneer and a visionary who helped generations of women embrace their most beautiful, confident selves. My thoughts and prayers are with his family," Michelle Obama said in a statement.