Gay comedian Bob Smith was the first openly gay comedian on the Tonight Show. He wrote his first novel, Selfish & Perverse, which I got signed on Sept 21, 2007, I saved my receipt from the Oscar Wilde Bookshop in NYC inside the cover.
Last year I met him again when he was in Toronto signing copies of his new novel, Remembrance of Things I Forgot. A great man who was diagnosed with ALS /Lou Gehrig's Disease, he was a picture of strength and courage, pushing through and doing his best. The quick progress of the disease shocked me as he went from showing no signs in 2007 to having difficulty speaking in 2011. The change is also reflected in the marked difference in his signatures.
I got a lot of strength from meeting Smith, he was an inspiration to me to make the best of every situation, as he continues to do. I wish him all the best.