I, and most of us who've covered politics in recent years, lost a gifted friend yesterday.
Robin Toner, whose newspaper career started in West Virginia but who spent 23 years at the New York Times, died of colon cancer.
I met Robin, as best I can remember, on Michael Dukakis' 1988 presidential campaign. She was there for the Times; I, for CBS. We sat together on the campaign enough that we got to be friends. She was an excellent reporter, a good observer who knew how politics worked and could write about it clearly and with authority.
And she had a good calm temperament, which helps on the road where things can and do go wrong. Hers was a face you were always glad to see on the bus, the plane, at the press conference, wherever. Just a good person with whom to share the trip.
I've missed her because I'm retired now and didn't cover the '08 campaign. Now, sadly, I'll miss her fine stories too.
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