"Most people don’t get to say goodbye, and almost none as eloquently. He thanked all who have helped him along the way, including colleagues, as well as his readers and television viewers, “who have made my career possible and given consequence to my life’s work.”
In the final two paragraphs, Charles summed up his life and principles: “I believe that the pursuit of truth and right ideas through honest debate and rigorous argument is a noble undertaking. I am grateful to have played a small role in the conversations that have helped guide this extraordinary nation’s destiny.
“I leave this life with no regrets. It was a wonderful life — full and complete with the great loves and great endeavors that make it worth living. I am sad to leave, but I leave with the knowledge that I lived the life that I intended.”
Anyone reading those words must be thinking the same: I hope I can say that someday. Of course, someday is any day, as Charles learned at age 22 when a diving accident left him paralyzed from the neck down.
Undeterred, he completed medical school and became a psychiatrist. Charles later recounted that professors came to his room and projected his lessons on the ceiling over the bed where he lay."