This morning, Gary Gygax passed on, a few months shy of his 70th birthday.
Gary is... was... a friend of mine. I'd only met him a few times at gaming events and the like, but for the last couple years I've been moderating a mailing list for him, and participating in some great online discussions.
Gary was a big personality... one that a lot of folks couldn't handle. He was confident, agressive, assertive, and he never backed down. He had an amazing wit and sense of humor; especially for the ironic, sarcastic, and absurd. Sometimes, he liked to argue, just to see what people would say; or just for fun.
What most people don't know is that Gary was also a deeply religious Christian, and a profoundly conservative man politically and socially. He was a father of six, and a grandfather of seven.
It always amused the hell out of me that the fundies would decry how D&D was the tool of the devil; and yet Gary was almost certainly more conservative than they were.
Being conservative, and being religious, don't have anything to do with having a quick, agile, open, and creative mind; no matter what some seem to believe.
Garys health has been pretty bad for a long time. Over the past few years, he's had several medically imposed periods of bed rest and isolation; a couple strokes, a couple cardiac events, and some immune system issues. It hasn't been announced exactly how he died, but it's believed to be heart related.
My prayers go out to Gail, his kids, and his grandkids.
Confugio Deus, Draco Magnus.