James Gandolfini's son Michael remembers his dad on anniversary of his death: 'Six years is too long'

Six years after actor James Gandolfini’s death, he continues to loom large in his son Michael’s life.

“6 years is too long. Every year without you is,” Michael wrote Wednesday on Instagram. “But I know you’re around. Miss you. More than anything. In this particular second it’s your laugh that I miss most. I love you so so much. We celebrate you today. Working hard to make you proud, I know you are, but I’ll never stop working at it. Love you dad.”


The elder Gandolfini, best known for his Emmy-winning turn as mobster Tony Soprano on HBO’s The Sopranos, died of a heart attack during a trip to Rome on June 19, 2013. He was 51.

Those who respected and adored James, including some of his co-workers, offered kind words to Michael.

Jamie-Lynn Sigler, who played James’s TV daughter, Meadow Soprano, on the show’s entire 86-episode run, wrote simply, “Oh,” with several heart emojis.

Actor Jerry Ferrera, who dated Sigler and starred in HBO’s Entourage, complimented Michael on the photo he chose to share. “Great pic Michael. You’ve made him very proud. More to come,” Ferrera wrote.

17 PHOTOS
Michael Gandolfini on the set of 'The Many Saints of Newark'
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Michael Gandolfini on the set of 'The Many Saints of Newark'
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini and producer/writer David Chase on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini and producer/writer David Chase on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini and producer/writer David Chase on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini and producer/writer David Chase on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini and producer/writer David Chase on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Michael Gandolfini and director Alan Taylor on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Michael Gandolfini and his mother Marcy Wudarski Gandolfini on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Actor Michael Gandolfini as a young "Tony Soprano" on the set of "The Many Saints of Newark" on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 11: Michael Gandolfini on set for "The Many Saints of Newark" as a young Tony Soprano on April 11, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 11: Michael Gandolfini on set for "The Many Saints of Newark" as a young Tony Soprano on April 11, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 11: Michael Gandolfini on set for "The Many Saints of Newark" as a young Tony Soprano on April 11, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bobby Bank/GC Images)
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Actor Domenick Lombardozzi, who’s appeared in several HBO shows, including The Wire, assured Michael that he was sending positive vibes. “He’s definitely smiling down and very proud,” Lombardozzi wrote.

John Ortiz, who’s appeared in HBO’s Luck and Togetherness, said he was doing the same. He added, “His laugh was the greatest.”

Others shared sweet stories, too.

Stunt coordinator Mark Riccardi remembers the elder Gandolfini’s thoughtful gesture when they had worked together. “A day I won’t forget only my 2nd film w JT at wrap your pops found me and ran over to my truck thanked me for a great day and gave me a bottle of JW Red .. class act.. never forgot that moment,” Riccardi commented.

A fan offered a secondhand account of the late star’s good behavior off-set: “Years ago a friend of mine was at a bar and was lucky enough to meet your dad there. A bunch of them played pool and hung out for awhile. I remember they said he was a normal guy, fun to hang with. No ego, just a cool guy.”

Someone else piped up, “As I sit here watching the Sopranos… thinking how great of an actor your father truly was! You have made him and I am certain you continue to do so.”

Since his father’s death, Michael has become an actor in his own right, with several notable credits to his name. He portrayed Joey Dwyer in HBO’s The Deuce and, most notably, will play a younger version of his dad’s iconic character in next year’s Sopranos prequel, The Many Saints of Newark.

28 PHOTOS
James Gandolfini from 'The Sopranos'
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James Gandolfini from 'The Sopranos'
James Gandolfini and Andy Garcia during Premiere of 'Night Falls On Manhattan' at Sony Lincoln Square Theater in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
James Gandolfini during Premiere of 'Night Falls On Manhattan' at Sony Lincoln Square Theater in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 12: Producer David Chase and wife Denise Kelly and actor James Gandolfini and wife Marcy attend the 51st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 12, 1999 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
E362451 10: Actor James Gandolfini who stars in the show as Anthony 'Tony' Soprano, attends the screening for the second season of HBO's critically acclaimed show 'Soprano's' at New York's Ziegfeld Theater, Wednesday, January 5, 2000. The show tops TV Guide's list of the best television shows of 1999, published in the magazine's Dec. 25 issue. (photo by Arnaldo Magnani/Liaison Agency)
American actor James Gandolfini, as Tony Soprano, smokes a cigar while he stands in pool, in publicity still for the HBO cable TV series 'The Sopranos,' 1999. (Photo by Anthony Neste/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
Actor James Gandolfini in scene from HBO TV drama series The Sopranos. (Photo by Anthony Neste/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
NEW YORK CITY - APRIL 26: Actor James Gandolfini attends the Fifth Annual Avignon New York Film Festival - 'Under Hellgate Bridge' Screening Party on April 26, 1999 at the French Institute in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
(L-R) Actors Dominic Chianese, Tony Sirico, Vincent Pastore, Steve Van Zandt & James Gandolfini in scene from HBO TV drama series The Sopranos. (Photo by Anthony Neste/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images)
NEW YORK CITY - OCTOBER 26: Actor James Gandolfini attends the Fifth Annual GQ Men of the Year Awards on October 26, 2000 at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 10: Actor James Gandolfini and wife Marcy attend the 52nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 10, 2000 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
James Gandolfini and Film Crew during James Gandolfini on Location for 'The Sopranos' - August 1, 2000 in Belleville, New Jersey, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Actors Jamie-Lynn Sigler and James Gandolfini at party for HBO television series Sex and the City. (Photo by Dave Allocca/DMI/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)
James Gandolfini (L) and Edie Falco of the hit Channel 4 show The Sopranos, at the Apollo Theatre, London. Falco, a Golden Globe award winner for her role as a gangster wife in the successful series, is currently appearing in London's West End in Side Man. * An award-winning Broadway play. Gandolfini, winner of the best actor Golden Globe award for his role in the Mafia series, was in the audience at the Apollo Theatre watching Falco. (Photo by Peter Jordan - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - MARCH 12: Actor James Gandolfini and wife Marcy attend the Sixth Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on March 12, 2000 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
386527 31: Actor James Gandolfini attends the 7th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards March 11, 2001 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Jason Kirk/Newsmakers)
(Original Caption) James Gandolfini, star of 'The Sopranos', and his date attend the series' premiere at Radio City Music Hall. (Photo by Steve Azzara/Corbis via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 15: James Gandolfini, wife Marcy and son Michael, 3, arrive for the New York premiere of 'The Wild Thornberrys Movie' at the Beekman Theater. The Gandolfinis are hoping to reach a settlement in their divorce proceedings. (Photo by Richard Corkery/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
NEW YORK-DECEMBER 12: Actor James Gandolfini attends The Sarah Moody Fundraiser on December 12, 2002 in New York City. (Photo by John Falls/Getty Images)
James Gandolfini during 'Peter Pan' Special Screening - New York at 72nd Street East Theatre in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Paul Hawthorne/WireImage)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 15: (ITALY OUT) Actor James Gandolfini is shown on the set of 'The Sopranos' filming by the Plaza Hotel October 15, 2003 in New York. (Photo by Arnaldo Magnani/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 15: Actor James Gandolfini is shown on the set of 'The Sopranos' filming by the Plaza Hotel October 15, 2003 in New York. (Photo by Arnaldo Magnani/Getty Images)
James Gandolfini attends 'Moving Image Salutes John Travolta' at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City on Sunday, November 5, 2004. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage for NBC Universal Photo Department)
Steven Van Zandt, Michael Imperioli and James Gandolfini (Photo by Brian Ach/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 4: Actor James Gandolfini talks at the Regency Hotel on November 4, 2006 in New York, New York. (Photo by Piyal Hosain/Fotos International/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 07: Actor James Gandolfini attends Stand Up For Heroes: A Benefit For The Bob Woodruff Family Fund at Town Hall on November 07, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Scott Wintrow/Getty Images)
NEW YORK CITY, NY - NOVEMBER 18: James Gandolfini attends THE CINEMA SOCIETY & DETAILS host the after party for 'MILK' at Bowery Hotel on November 18, 2008 in New York City. (Photo by PATRICK MCMULLAN/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 13: James Gandolfini arrives at the 60th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards held at Nokia Theatre on September 13, 2008 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
NEW YORK - JANUARY 14: Actor James Gandolfini refuels his scooter on January 14, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Ray Tamarra/Getty Images)
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