Tim Cook pays tribute to Steve Jobs on the day he died

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Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs passed away on this day in 2011.
Photo: Apple

Today marks six years since Steve Jobs passed away at the age of 56. To mark the occasion, current CEO Tim Cook tweeted out a photo of Jobs and the words, “Make something wonderful, and put it out there.”

A great partnership

The full line Cook is quoting was said by Jobs: “One of the ways people express their appreciation to the rest of humanity is to make something wonderful and put it out there. So we need to be true to who we are and remember what’s really important to us. That’s what’s going to keep Apple ‘Apple,’ is if we can keep us ‘us.’”

The quote was used as the opening lines of the recent iPhone X media event, which emanated from the Steve Jobs Theater at the new Apple Campus.

Jobs and Tim Cook worked incredibly closely for years. Cook joined shortly after Steve Jobs had returned to Apple following his wilderness years at NeXT. Apple was just barely profitable after a few disastrous years, and Cook saw an opportunity to work with a Silicon Valley legend like Jobs in turning Apple around.

“Any purely rational consideration of cost and benefits lined up in Compaq’s favor, and the people who knew me best advised me to stay at Compaq,” Cook recalled in his commencement speech at Auburn University. “On that day in early 1998 I listened to my intuition, not the left side of my brain or for that matter even the people who knew me best… no more than five minutes into my initial interview with Steve, I wanted to throw caution and logic to the wind and join Apple. My intuition already knew that joining Apple was a once in a lifetime opportunity to work for the creative genius, and to be on the executive team that could resurrect a great American company.”

Cook eventually stepped in to work as Apple’s CEO during Steve Jobs’ cancer-related medical leaves, before assuming the job full-time in August 2011 — where he has continued to work since then. As intensely private as Cook is, he has often spoken about Jobs’ incredible legacy at Apple.

Now being 56 years old himself — the same age Jobs was when he died — today will doubtless be an additionally poignant moment of reflection for Cook about the enormous debt Apple owes to Steve Jobs.

We’ll update this post if other Apple executives tweet their memories of Steve.