I've read online that Dungeons and Dragons creator Gary Gygax has died.
Like many others, D&D helped spur my imagination as a teenager. It increased my intelligence and vocabulary (how many 13 year olds know what a portcullis is?), and while I didn't know it at the time, furthered my improv and acting skills better than any class I ever took on the subject.
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Gygax once at a gaming convention in Evansville, IN when I was 15. He autographed my copy of Deities and Demigods, even though he didn't have a hand in creating that specific book. I still have it on my shelf - worn and tattered from endless readings and uses, and I still pull it out once in awhile to glance thru.
While others online are making Save vs. Death jokes right now, I'll just simply say "Thanks" to a man that gave this shy, awkward kid something to do a quarter of a century ago.