Whether personally or globally, the old warriors, then young and vigorous, pass into history, leaving those in their wake to praise or condemn. What was unusual and daring in their time is now 'settled' ... whether it was the rise to the top of a corporation, an attempt to undo the horrors of some addiction, or a revolution to reshape the governance of a country.
The praise and blame assigned to their efforts -- or my efforts -- grow wispy and contrived. That was then, this is now. It is the effects that weave the tapestry of now.
But their best legacy, I imagine, is to suggest that making an effort on behalf of something worthwhile is ... well, worthwhile. Looking back makes some sense. Dwelling in the past, while comforting, doesn't compute very well, no matter what the praise or blame.