It was said of Abraham Lincoln upon his passing that “now he belongs to the ages,” and that is the same sentiment I find myself feeling upon learning that Tony Snow has died of colon cancer today at age 53.The Bush administration released a statement through current press secretary Dana Perino, she who inherited Mr. Snow’s warm podium, upon Mr. Snow’s passing saying, “The White House has lost a great friend and a great colleague. We all loved watching him at the podium, but most of all we learned how to love our families and treat each other.”This couldn’t be better said. I last met Tony Snow at the MRC Dishonor awards (see picture of Tony and I) only but a few short months ago and a more gracious man one could never meet. Snow was tasked with delivering the keynote address and his words were, as always, filled with grace, good humor, and optimism even as he must have known he wasn’t long for this world.And after his address, after the festivities of the night ended, Mr. Snow happily stayed for pictures and questions from those in attendance. Even as many of the other notable speakers (Ann Coulter and Cal Thomas for instance) quickly made for the exits, Tony Snow, despite his debilitating illness, stayed, shook hands, stood for photos and bantered with the attendees of the dinner. That is how my ugly mug got snapped standing next to this fine, fine American.This is a sad loss for America. But let us remain as humble as Tony Snow in our assessment. The country will go on, of course. Tony Snow wasn’t the end all and be all of America and his passing won’t end our great experiment in self government. He would be offended, I’m sure, if we made too much of his passing. He was too humble a man for that.But it will be a tad colder and less friendly as well as a bit less optimistic now that this wonderful fellow has passed on to his just rewards.Rest in peace, Tony Snow. We’ll miss that sunny countenance and thoughtful commentary we’d become so used to. A hale fellow well met has passed, but his lessons of self determination and his surety that these United States is not a failed premise will stay with us forever.Robert Anthony SnowBorn June 1st, 1955Died July 12th, 2008
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