It is with a heavy heart that I post this. BJ Dybus, callsign "Meatball" and author of the blog My Dice Hate Me, passed away a week ago today. I was checking in with him via email since I had not heard from him in a few days and his wife broke the horrible news.
BJ has been around the 40k blogosphere for some time now, his own blog, originally titled Extremis Diabolus, hit dirtside in 2009. Like many here, BJ and I became friends through our blogs and mutual hobbies and interests. He would enthusiastically comment on post after post here. Here is his bio as posted in his Blogger profile:
"I have been playing miniature war games since 1998. I started off with Warhammer Fantasy Battles and about a year later I drifted into Warhammer 40K. Last year I expanded into playing Warmachine and Hordes as well as my first historical wargame, Flames of War. While I do try to play competitively, I enjoy the social and fluff aspects of the hobby more than anything. I also enjoy PnP RPGs mostly D&D but RIFTS is a close 2nd favorite for me and I am now getting into Dark Heresy. I play MMORPGs as well; currently I am playing EQ2 and RIFT." -BJNeedless to say this news hit me pretty hard. It's weird the way social circles have evolved in these times, and though BJ and I never met in person he still carried the same weight any of my local gaming buddies would when it comes to hanging out.
My Dice Hate Me has about three hundred posts, all organized neatly, and clearly labeled by subject matter. There's all kinds of good stuff in there, and it's all solidly written and worthwhile. I encourage you to read through his entries, starting with his first post introduction. It can't possibly cover the vast scope of who BJ was, but it certainly does give you a window into his life.
I look back at that first post and smile that I had left a "welcome to the blog-world" comment. Funnily enough it would be me a year or so later giving him his new blog moniker "Meatball". BJ was a medic in the Air Force and lived in San Antonio, Texas. My condolences go out to the family he leaves behind, he leaves a void in our own family here.
EDIT: Thanks to Santa Cruz Warhammer's John for supplying a link to BJ's obituary. Its information is much more comprehensive than what I have here and worth looking at further.