Khenn Arrth said... " It's official. Dave Arneson's daughter called Mike Stackpole this morning and told him that Dave died in his sleep last night. The true father of Dungeons and Dragons has left us. I knew Dave and liked him, and I think he liked me. We ate hamburgers and milkshakes together at GenCon about 3 years ago. I saw him last year and he didn't look good. I'm glad his pain is over."
I encountered Dave while he was working the Flying Buffalo booth at GenCon sometime in the 90s. I read his name tag and all sorts of stupid fanboy noises bubbled up in my brain. I choked it back to something along the lines of, "Mr. Arneson, I am very pleased to meet you. Your creation has had an enormous influence on my life." We had some conversation, I bought something, and went on my way. The following year, I brought Clueless Tom along. Dave was again in the FB booth; Tom was looking at things, talking to Dave, and I suggested that Tom read Dave's name tag. Tom did, and every single stupid fanboy thought I had had the previous year came pouring out of Tom's mouth twice (at least...). Dave was obviously embarrassed. Later at the same con I ran into Steve Lortz, and he invited me to lunch, as long as I didn't mind also sharing the table with Dave... So the three of us had lunch, for about 45 minutes. It was the best GenCon experience I have ever had.
Dave was charming, genial, polite, and generally a pleasure to be around. The world is a sadder place than it was...