Hayven wasn't like other World of Warcraft YouTubers. As he himself was quick to point out, his videos couldn't teach people how to dole out DPS in raids or make rivals rage-weep in PVP. He was interested in the history of the 13-year-old MMO, and he did his best to chronicle it, even after he contracted a rare form of cancer.
Yesterday, the bad news hit in the form of a new video on Hayven's channel after a month-long absence. Hayven passed on March 18, explained the video's description. He was only 26.
The video was a brief musical piece, accompanied by a tribute. "He was an inspiration to many and someone who cared immensely about his fans and community," it read (via PVP Live). "Hayven had fought epithelioid sarcoma, a rare and severe form of cancer that usually affects teenagers and young adults. You will always be missed Hayven, and although you lost to cancer, you have forever won our hearts."
One of Hayven's historical videos, in which he chronicles the evolution of Dalaran from Warcraft II all the way up to WoW's Legion expansion.
Many of Hayven's videos were well-researched probes into the hard-to-reach corners of WoW's history, but he also took time to talk about his battle with cancer and keep his viewers abreast of the situation. Even as his video output understandably declined, his community stuck by him. In the wake of his death, they have started a petition to have him memorialised in World of Warcraft.
Right now, everybody's mourning. On his most recent videos and a handful of older ones, people are posting tributes and memories:
Other WoW YouTubers have also posted tributes to Hayven. Here's one from BellularGaming:
Here's another from DinaPlays:
And here's an especially heartfelt one from HeelvsBabyface, who'd been friends with Hayven for a few years:
"I loved him to pieces," said HeelvsBabyface, through tears. "And he'd always tell me, 'I love you too, mate.'"
Hayven's YouTube channel will remain up, and all future money from it and his Patreon will go toward cancer research. People, however, are not simply the things they make. Hayven was clearly far more than his videos. He was a friend to those who knew him and a friendly presence to his fans. He added kindness to the world, and he will be missed.