There's a CNN article up today that posts emails from various people about what Pavarotti meant to them. Here's one that particularly struck me:
In the mid-'90s, Luciano Pavarotti came to South Africa and performed in the town of Stellenboch. It was a very exclusive open-air concert. The tickets were very expensive and all the rich and famous in South Africa were there. Next to the stadium is a river that runs through the town. On the night, crowds of people gathered along the banks of the river. Like me, they could not afford the concert. From where we stood we could see the beautiful mountains, see the lights of the stadium and we could not see him, but we could hear his amazing voice. I looked at the people around me, they all had an expression of sheer wonder on their faces. He gave us all a wonderful gift that night. I will never forget it! He made us fall in love with opera!
I was actually there in South Africa during the event mentioned and I remember the excitement. No, I didn't go to hear him because I, too, was very poor. But I was pleased for the people in the Cape province who did get to hear him.
He was an amazing artist. And he will truly be missed.
UPDATE: His signature piece: