I had only just begun to come to terms with the passing of William F. Buckley jr. when I found out that E. Gary Gygax* passed away this morning. Two very different people, but both have had a profound effect on my life.
Mr. Buckley, the father of the modern conservative movement, has been the voice and the guide to other voices that have educated and advised me for many years, through the National Review and more recently it's online companion the National Review Online. My political philosophy exists as it does largely because of him.
Mr Gygax, the father of Role Playing Games(RPG), created (with help from a few others) Dungeons and Dragons, which led to the creation of many other RPG's. Starting in 1980 I began to play D&D, from there I have moved on to many other games, and genres, but I have always returned to D&D.
I never met either one of them. I will deeply miss them both.
* updated: 7/06/2011