Robin Williams Tunnel Gets New Signs To Honor Late Actor, Comedian [PHOTO]
Nearly two years after his death, a San Francisco tunnel named after Robin Williams finally erected its new signs Tuesday, bearing the name of the late actor and comedian.
The tunnel, formerly known as the Waldo Tunnel, or the Rainbow Tunnel, connects the Golden Gate Bridge to Marin County, where Williams used to live.
The new name signs, one on each side, were installed several months after the California state legislature approved a bill to rename the tunnel in honor of Williams. The $3,000 for the signs were raised through private donations.
"Robin Williams was a friend to the North Bay community of the San Francisco Bay area," the bill read. "He would often drop in unannounced at comedy nights at the 142 Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley. There he would encourage young, budding comedians. He did so with kindness and humility and many comedians aspired to perform with the same level of wit and insight as Robin Williams."
The tunnel's rainbow arch reminds many of Williams' popular sitcom "Mork & Mindy," in which his character wore rainbow-colored suspenders.
"Robin was a one-of-a-kind type of person, and I want him to be honored in an unconventional, everlasting and beautiful way," Julie Wainwright said in an online petition she launched that garnered more than 60,000 signatures and precipitated the senate vote. "This is just one way that we can do that."
"#RobinWillaims Tunnel is now official. Driving through the rainbow to or from San Francisco to Marin - remember Robin," Wainwright tweeted on Tuesday.
Williams died after committing suicide on Aug. 11, 2014 at the age of 63. He had been suffering from severe depression and Parkinson's disease.
"This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings. I am utterly heartbroken," his wife Susan Schneider said at the time. "As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin's death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions."
"We miss you, Robin," California Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom captioned a picture of the new sign on Twitter.