Twilight fans were left grieving on Monday when news broke that Gregory Tyree Boyce was found dead at the age of 30. Fans knew Boyce for his role as Tyler Crowley in the first movie. Boyce had stepped away from Hollywood since his debut in Twilight and was apparently on his way to becoming a chef according to his mother's Facebook post.
When it came to the Stephanie Meyers adaptation, Boyce played a pretty integral part in the first installment. In the beginning, Boyce's character was instrumental in getting the series' biggest stars, Bella Swan, who was played by Kristin Stewart and Robert Pattinson's Edward Cullen, together. Bella might not have ever learned of Edward's secret if not for a mishap by Tyler. An accident saw Tyler and the van he was driving almost run over Bella in the Forks High School parking lot. Saving Bella from a horrible fate was Edward, who jumped into action seemingly out of nowhere and stopping the truck from crushing the two of them.
In the book, Tyler feels extreme guilt for the near-fatal accident in which he suffered multiple cuts on his face. He offers to take Bella to the spring dance in an attempt to make things up to her. Bella rejects, but Tyler instead assumes she'll go to prom with him, even showing up that night before being told by Edward that he would not be going with her. This story changes a little bit in the movie as Tyler doesn't show as much regret over nearly running Bella over and, in turn, never does ask her to prom. Tyler's run in the films ended after the first Twilight but appeared in New Moon and Eclipse in the novels, and also will be appearing in Meyers' newest adaptation, Midnight Sun.
Fans of the series realized his importance in the overall story and paid tribute to Boyce after learning of his death. One user said Boyce brought to life the part of Tyler, adding that "it's because of him that Bella finally starts thinking about Edward as something not human." While not speaking directly about Boyce's role or any character, in particular, the author of Twilight said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly back in 2008 that all of the actors "were speaking the way they should and the heart was there." Meyers admitted she was nervous seeing her work adapted to the film, but added that "I could have watched it all night in a loop if I could have."