On May 2nd, 2005, we lost my brother Seth to esophageal cancer. The two cancers I've yet to know any mortal survive are esophageal and pancreatic. Both swift-moving, both too deadly for our attempts at treatment and often too late diagnosed. This morning I went to the Guardian website and saw a photo of Christopher Hitchens up top. I thought before saying it, "Oh, no." But yes. Esophageal cancer has killed him.
Of course I didn't know him. I've read his writing. I've seen his debates and lectures. Hitchens was a thinker, that rare bird so maligned these days. His opinions and deductions were well-founded though I didn't always agree. It's a wonderful thing to take one's wits out for a walk and Hitchens was always a good walking companion.
In his last days, strung up with IV leads in a hospital room, he continued to write at a desk by a window. His last column appears in January's Vanity Fair:
He was 62 .I shall miss him. And am profoundly saddened by his death.
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