Ghostbusters was one of the most influential movies of my life. In fact, there was a point in my childhood when I was completely OBSESSED with the movie.
I had the Ghostbusters novel tie-in (which I read so often that it eventually fell apart), the Ghostbusters soundtrack on cassette, and I could memorize every single line of Ray Parker Jr's theme song.
When the Ghostbusters cartoon came out later, I was so happy, but then was so upset at first that it wasn't the REAL Ghostbusters:
...but it grew on me, so when the The Real Ghostbusters cartoon came out later, I happily combined the two shows' characters in my playtime.
I was so obsessed with the movie that I actually wanted to become a Ghostbuster. But since I couldn't find any ghosts, I went for the next best thing - I became an Antbuster instead!
I had my own little "photon pack" (a little box filled with cotton buds, a water spray with the nozzle set to "Kill" (otherwise known as "shoot a single stream of water instead of spray"), and even little matchboxes to "trap" the ants (never worked though they kept getting out for some reason).
I even had my own logo, which looked something like this except it was hand drawn:
Yes, my drawing isn't very good (even now). That's why I'm a writer, not an artist.
My brother, who was about 5-6 at the time wanted to play as well, so I made him another pack, but since I was already the number one Antbuster in the house, I made him a Webbuster instead, and set him on all the cobwebs in the house. It was decidedly less awesome than busting ants (webs don't run away screaming) but it got him out of my hair while I was out busting ants.
And yeah, busting ants made me feel good!
Unfortunately, my parents got sick of me spraying water all over the house and I had to disband the Antbusters.
But never fear! There's always Lego!
I had LEGO version of the Ecto-1, little makeshift LEGO versions of the four Ghostbusters, and even built my very own Ghostbusters HQ with scattered Lego bricks, with Lacy parts as "secret" entrances for the Ecto-1. It was glorious.
Back then, the Ghosbusters toys were pretty awesome - the Haunted Humans line was my favorite, and they had stuff like a granny turning into a ghost, etc:
My parents never bought me any of them (they got me Lego and Transformers though, so I was more than happy), but I was still pretty obsessed with them. So I made my own Lego version of the toys instead, and used them to fight the Lego Ghostbusters I made. I even had the Lego Ghostbusters team up with my Lego Autobots to fight the ghosts and Lego DEcepticons, and boy did they have some gloriously wild fights (which usually lasted until my dad stepped on one of the bricks and confiscated my Lego).
So yeah, the Ghostbusters were a HUGE part of my childhood, so when I found out that Harold Ramis, a.k.a. Egon Spengler, my favorite Ghostbuster had died, a little part of me died inside.
Rest in peace, Mr. Ramis. And may your streams never get crossed wherever you are, Egon.