The world lost one of YouTube's early sensations this week, with the passing of one Paul Vasquez. While you may not know is name right away, you've almost certainly seen the video that made Vasquez famous. In 2010, Vasquez posted his video of a Double Rainbow online, and he quickly became a phenomenon. Sadly, Vasuez died this weekend at the age of 57. The news was confirmed by The Modesto Bee.
Vasquez published a video of a full double rainbow to his YouTube channel in January 2010, which was taken from his mountainside home in California. The video itself simply shows the rainbow, but it was Vasquez's reaction that made the whole thing a hit. Through the entire three-minute video, Vasquez can be heard reacting to the rainbow, sounding completely giddy about what he's looking at. At one point he laughs. At one point he cries. Audiences around the country connected with all of the emotions felt by Vasquez when he witnessed something beautiful, and he became a lovable YouTube icon almost overnight. Jimmy Kimmel shared the video and it only got more popular from there. To-date, the Double Rainbow video has been viewed more than 46 million times.
Following the success of the video, Vasquez was hired do a few different commercials, including ads for Microsoft and Delta Airlines. His most well-known commercial was a spot for Smartwater, which he shot with Friends alum Jennifer Aniston.
According to The Modesto Bee, Vasquez had been ill recently, and had been tested for COVID-19 after showing some symptoms of the disease. It has not been confirmed what the actual cause of death was.
"No matter where I was or what I was doing, Paul was a bright spot, always enthusiastic about the world," friend Robert Borchard told The Modesto Bee. "I tend to be a guy who hangs a lot of crepe and manages to focus on the bad things going on in the world. We were a good balance for each other."
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