mlfcyw at Swift’s last blog post:
I don’t know how else to tell you all who love this blog. I am Jon Swift’s Mom and I guess I’m going to OUT him. He was Al Weisel, my beloved son. Al was on his way to his father’s funeral in VA when he suffered 2 aortic aneurysms, a leaky aortic valve and an aortic artery dissection from his heart to his pelvis. He had 3 major surgeries within 24 hours and sometime during those surgeries also suffered a severe stroke. We, his 2 sisters, his brother, his partner and his best friend since he was 9 years old were with him as he took his last breath. We have all lost a shining start who warmed our hearts, tormented us and made us laugh as he giggled at our pulling something over on us. He passed away on February 27, 2010. My beloved child will live on in so many hearts. I miss him more than I can say. If you are on Facebook, go to organizations and join “Friends of Al Weisel, Unite!” It will give you just a taste of how special he was. Farewell, Jon (Al)
The great Jon Swift has died. That’s the “blogging” angle to a personal tragedy. In reality, the voice of Jon Swift – the hilarious faux conservative blogger whose talent and passion were evident in every post – belonged to Al Weisel, a sweet and good-natured journalist who happened to be the college roommate of my once-and-future collaborator Jason Chervokas.
I didn’t know him well, but Al graciously agreed to be part of my little newcritics experiment of a couple of years back and his presence at some of our New York gatherings was generous, friendly, and low key – though the humor could sometimes be appropriately biting.
Al Weisel was the political poser’s worst enemy as Jon Swift, but he was also a good guy to hang around the pub with and commiserate over New York’s shrinking freelance rates. Gone all too soon, he’ll be truly missed by many.
UPDATE: There’s a Facebook group.
Jill at Feministe:
Jon was one of the first bloggers to link to my writing, and was always very supportive of feminist bloggers. His writing was consistently incisive, intelligent and hilarious.
He was a good one, and he will be missed.
Steve Hynd at Newshoggers:
Al was a good blog-buddy to all of the Newshoggers crew and our condolences go out to his family. He will be sorely missed.
Al, you’ll always be an A-Lister to us.
UPDATE: Ann Althouse
Melissa McEwan at Shakesville