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Today I learned that Chip Gerdes, my friend and friend of this blog, passed away.

There are many characters fighting this war to restore freedom and an appreciation for American exceptionalism to our country; but there is no one like Chip.

Chip, who was one of the behind-the-scenes guys who do so much heavy lifting in politics, running campaigns, connecting media with stories, generally getting things done, was, like Andrew, larger than life. In fact it was through Chip that I first met Andrew.

Every time I saw him he would regale me with another inconceivable story from his work. It’s better to skim the surface of these stories — they were often successful and always mischievous.

you know ja Chip

It was Chip’s downtown apartment that many of us fighting the fight in Chicago would gather to be entertained by Chip, planning a “flotilla” up to Madison to catch up with the protesters, or arguing over where to go to dinner. We nearly always decided on the Chicago standby Greek Islands, Chip picking up the check no matter how big or small the group.

And it was through his magnetic personality that many of us who can sometimes lean overly ideological (myself foremost) were brought together, scolded for our zealousness, and generally reminded that sometimes you have to laugh through this war we’re in. Chip, charming and amiable where some of us are sharp-elbowed, was a warrior. And his role was vital to bringing cohesiveness to the grassroots army.

He leaves behind a wife and young daughter whom I had the pleasure of getting to know. I hope you will keep them in your thoughts and prayers as you reflect on the many types of warriors who are fighting today.

In honor of his alma mater that he loved so much, Roll Tide Roll.

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