Tuning into Byron “Reckful” Bernstein’s recent daily Twitch streams, you wouldn’t immediately suspect something’s amiss. He’s front and center, playing World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, League of Legends, or any number of other games. Fans frequently make playful remarks, use emotes, and laugh at or with him. But the illusion doesn’t last long, nor is it meant to. “Rest in peace, Reckful,” reads each day’s stream title. Chat messages shuffle by like mourners paying respects at a funeral. “Why did he have to die?” asks one. Nobody answers. They’ve all been asking the same question for months.
Byron “Reckful” Bernstein was a Twitch fixture, transforming himself into an essential part of the platform’s DNA during his eight-year streaming career. Last month, he died by suicide, leaving a whole host of gaming communities mourning in his wake. Now, Blizzard has chosen to honor him with an in-game World of Warcraft tribute.
Today, former top World of Warcraft player and longtime Twitch streamer Byron “Reckful” Bernstein died.