A month earlier, Randy earned international fame when his final lecture to his students at Carnegie Mellon was posted on the Internet. "There's an academic tradition called the 'Last Lecture.' Hypothetically, if you knew you were going to die and you had one last lecture, what would you say to your students?" Randy asked. "Well, for me, there's an elephant in the room. And the elephant in the room [was that], for me, it wasn't hypothetical."
Of the many life lessons in Randy's lecture was this memorable tidbit: "Never ever underestimate the importance of having fun. I am dying soon, and I am choosing to have fun today, tomorrow and every other day I have left."
Look back at Randy's last lecture
During their interview, Oprah asked Randy if his life was well spent. "I'm married to an incredible woman, and I have great kids," he said. "I like to think that I have helped a lot of other people—and that's the best definition I know of time well spent."
Randy passed away on July 25, 2008. He was 47 years old.
His words are immortalized in his best-selling book, The Last Lecture.
Dr. Oz remembers Randy Pausch