“He’s one of those people that his entire life, whenever someone else was suffering he was there to some degree," Gere recalled fondly.
Trigger warning: This article contains themes of death and grief that some readers may find distressing
Richard Gere is grieving the loss of his father, Homer, who died earlier this month at the age of 100. According to reports, Homer Gere, a long-time community volunteer in North Syracuse, passed away on March 1 in Downstate New York, per Syracuse. As a father, Homer was incredibly involved in his son’s life and inspired him to strive for greatness even prior to a career that would see Richard climb up to dazzling heights in the challenging world of the entertainment industry.
On March 4, Richard's wife, Alejandra Silva announced his death as she posted a tribute to Homer's incredible life on Instagram. She wrote, “Homer George Gere, a community activist in North Syracuse, has died in North Salem, New York. He was 100 years old at the time of his death on March 1, 2023. A successful insurance agent until his retirement at 65, Gere was known in the community as a gifted entrepreneur and was awarded for his work as a volunteer for North Area Meals on Wheels. As a supporter of that non-profit organization, he was featured in national advertisements alongside his son Richard Gere." The post further read, "Known for his everyday kindnesses, he was also a dedicated public school advocate."
Though Richard has not yet publicly commented on his father’s death, one can assume the emotional toll it must have taken on the son who always spoke fondly of his father. The Pretty Woman star often talked about his father’s support in interviews and even mentioned that his father has "always been my hero. When neighbors needed them, he was there." Both his parents, he shared, played an important role in how his life turned out, per Independent. "My parents are extraordinary people," he shared. "They gave me and my four brothers and sisters enormous opportunities in terms of education, in terms of music, in terms of anything we had an inclination towards somehow they found a way for that to happen."
Homer had recently celebrated his 100th birthday in the presence of his son and other loved ones. The birthday party was held at Pastabilities, one of the oldest restaurants in Armory Square, New York. The restaurant posted about their visit on their Instagram page after they left. “Richard Gere came into Pasta’s tonight to celebrate his father's 100th birthday,” the post said.
Homer had a huge influence on Richard’s life, so much so that the award-winning actor named his son Homer too. During his acceptance speech after receiving an honor at City Harvest Festival Gala in 2019, Richard credited his father for the morals he has developed, according to PageSix. “My father, in about 10 days, is going to be 97 years old and his mind is better than mine,” the Nights in Rodanthe star said at the time, adding, “He’s one of those people that his entire life, whenever someone else was suffering he was there to some degree.” The 73-year-old added, “If he didn’t have money, it was a smile or an embrace or whatever he had to help out, and that was around me the whole time I was growing up.” Homer Gere lived a life of purpose as he offered a helping hand to those in need and now his legacy will be continued by his son.