creators.com opinion web
Liberal Opinion Conservative Opinion
Matt Towery
Matt Towery
16 Oct 2014
Incidental Chaos

My recent comments concerning the problems that might take place when "Ebola meets the flu season" became all … Read More.

9 Oct 2014
Will Politics Rule When Ebola and Flu Season Converge?

Let's get one thing straight. The many who have contracted the Ebola virus, and who tragically have suffered … Read More.

2 Oct 2014
Amid a Flurry of Other News, Ferguson Story Quietly Looms Over Election

News cycles come and go. And with lapses in Secret Service protection for President Obama and the first … Read More.

As He Lay Dying: The Most Important Column I Will Ever Write

Comment

Yes!!! My polling in the presidential race made Drudge today ... a first! I don't even care.

As I write, a true conservative/libertarian talk show host — one with a heart, with true personality, with a soul — is ready to die. He wants to die. And he is the greatest hero I have ever known.

I know I could have more readers if I wrote about my polling showing Newt Gingrich surging, or if I wrote sordid details about my friend Herman Cain. But I can't. I want to write about life and death, and those who face it with courage ... and there are few.

Ron Smith is one of the few. He has been a force on Baltimore radio for well over 20 years. Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the last year, Smith, whose larger-than-life character made him the king of Baltimore talk radio, became the one person in a million who took bad news and handled it like a man.

Good God how much I wish I had one-tenth of Ron Smith's character, his fortitude, his bravery. This man, who fought for conservative and libertarian views for years on the radio, is the most courageous and honest person I have ever known. He has faced death in the face and said, "I'm ready to die." For heaven's sake, do you know anyone with that courage or the truthfulness to stare death in the face and say, "I want to die?"

This is the greatness of Ron Smith. He fought the battle for those who were conservative, those who wanted government out of their lives and those who wanted a funny, caring personality behind those thoughts. He is a damn American hero.

And they loved him. In Baltimore, where he was on the air for over 20 years, he became an icon. Yet he never sought syndicated radio; just yesterday, he told me, "I loved doing what I did in a community where I felt comfortable."

Oh, yes, your listeners were more than comfortable.

Ron, other than Neal Boortz, I never met a talk show host more comfortable in his own skin. Ron laughed, he cried, he joked, he made strong points ... all with a wink in his eye.

When Ron first had me on, I was starting my "journalistic career," and he somehow loved my columns on my beloved Townhall. I was a frequent guest when no person wanted me. Now that Gingrich leads the GOP race, I basically have turned off my phone.

I talked to Ron, right after gushing on his show on Tuesday. He was frank. "I've asked them to increase the pain medications but quit prolonging my life ... I'll be dead in two days."

What do you say to someone you love when they say this is your last conversation?

It's not about Barack Obama, Gingrich or Mitt Romney. It's not even about radio, television or the news. This is the biggest issues of all ... facing death straight on.

No one can do this ... but Ron Smith can, and he has done so.

He told me that he had a few days left. I struggled for words to respond. He told me not to worry, that we don't remember before we were born and that death would likely be the same.

How does one say goodbye to a person who, for no other reason than caring about you and your message, gave the time of day when few others would? I fell back on the most trite of phrases ... the French term of "au revoir." I told Ron that was until we meet again. I have no idea if my past French lessons had held ... I was too busy crying.

God be with you, Ron Smith. You are a great American hero. Damn, I will miss you.

Matt Towery is author of the book "Paranoid Nation: The Real Story of the 2008 Fight for the Presidency." He heads the polling and political information firm InsiderAdvantage. Follow him on Twitter @matttowery. To find out more about Matt Towery and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2011 CREATORS.COM



Comments

0 Comments | Post Comment
Already have an account? Log in.
New Account  
Your Name:
Your E-mail:
Your Password:
Confirm Your Password:

Please allow a few minutes for your comment to be posted.

Enter the numbers to the right:  
Creators.com comments policy
More
Matt Towery
Oct. `14
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
28 29 30 1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31 1
About the author About the author
Write the author Write the author
Printer friendly format Printer friendly format
Email to friend Email to friend
View by Month
Authorís Podcast
Roger Simon
Roger SimonUpdated 22 Oct 2014
Ben Shapiro
Ben ShapiroUpdated 22 Oct 2014
John Stossel
John StosselUpdated 22 Oct 2014

7 Nov 2013 Republican National Committee Needs a New Leader

16 Aug 2012 A Strategy for Romney That Could Actually Win the Presidency

14 Jun 2012 Independent Voters Giving up on Obama ... Thank You, Mr. President