Ray Hartwell: Another Great American Gone

I heard the awful news today from Hans von Spakovsky that our friend Ray Hartwell died.  The news was the latest in a series of awful losses – Andrew Breitbart, Chip Gerdas and Barry Rubin.


A few years ago, Ray was deep in his position at a major law firm when he approached me and Hans von Spakovsky and asked how he could do more.  He wanted to write.  He wanted to preserve and protect the country that he loved.  He wanted to act.  He had done his time in the Navy, but wanted to do more.
Ray wrote for PJ Media and the American Spectator.  He wrote this spectacular piece about my litigation in Guam for the Washington Times.  He had keen insights into the strategic importance of the island that I did not know before I filed the case.

At Christmas time this year, he sent me his final piece, a touching “Christmas Eve Message to the Troops.”

There is nothing that grates me more than someone emailing me or commenting to an article of mine by saying “Someone should….”  It grates me because I knew people like Ray Hartwell.  Ray didn’t wait for someone else to do it.  He didn’t suggest someone else write an article or someone else say this or that.  He wrote it.  He said it – all the while working for a top shelf D.C. law firm.


That raises another point.  D.C. is a town where lots of folks are in very comfortable positions. There are lots of D.C. lawyers who don’t want to rock any boats, don’t want to take any stands and don’t want to “jeopardize their careers. ”

Ray proved you could act to preserve and protect this country while not jeopardizing a career.  In the end, Ray knew what was more important than any career anyhow.  He loved this nation.  He loved liberty.  And he wasn’t afraid to defend it.


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