Charles William "Bill" Criss, the father of Filipino-American actor Darren Criss, has passed away. He was 78.
The "Glee" and "American Crime Story" star confirmed the passing in an Instagram post on Tuesday, April 28.
Sharing pictures of his father, Darren wrote: "Bill Criss has left the building. After many years of coping with a rare heart condition—which, true to his form, very few would have ever been aware of—he finally checked out peacefully yesterday morning, surrounded by his loved ones."
He went on to pay a touching tribute to his dad.
"Dad lived an extraordinary life," he began.
"Anyone who ever met Bill Criss adored him instantly. He could talk to anyone about anything. Well-read and well-traveled, he made a world a better place wherever he went. He was as deliriously charming as he was relentlessly selfless; always putting other people first, making anybody who ever got in a conversation with him genuinely feel like they were the most incredible person in the room. And although he would have been the first to gracefully protest it, the simple truth is that he was in fact, every inch the exemplary man: a devoted husband, an outstanding father, a loving grandparent. He lived his days the same way he loved his friends and family—with an unwavering sense of composure, compassion, generosity, ad humility," he continued.
According to Criss, he has spent most of his life trying to be his father, who he described as a "true gentleman through and through" and a "constant source of joy and inspiration" for him.
"[I wanted] to see and do all the incredible things he did—I'm so grateful he was around to see me actually pull a few off. He was there for all the greatest moments of my life, which of course, he always dressed up for. His kind, blue eyes, big laugh, and infamous warm smiled could not have been a better representation of who he was to his core," he said.
"I cherished him every day, and will forever," he added.
Bill was an investment banker and a patron of the arts. In the late '80s to early '90s, he and his family resided in Honolulu, Hawaii, where he started EastWest Bank, serving as its chairman and CEO.
He also served as a director of the San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Performances, the Stern Grove Festival, and the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra (PBO). According to his profile on PBO's official website, where he is listed as one of the Board of Directors, Bill "played the clarinet until his first and last recital."
Bill left behind his Cebuana wife, Cerina, and two sons, Charles and Darren.