To the Editors of the Summer News:
As a former student and colleague of Robert McCloskey, I feel his death as a tragic loss. He was a man of passion. All his intensity, vigor, commitment, his uncomplacent integrity, vigor, commitment, his uncomplacent integrity were devoted to fairness, clarity, understanding and humaneness. This is what made him so superb a teacher. The white heat of his mind and heart was at the service of nothing else than light.
Many of those who disagreed with him during last spring's crisis recognized that he was fighting for a certain conception of the University, for scholarly values he had practiced all his life, and they shared his concern for objectivity, intellectual honesty, a University unsullied by the outside world, even if they did not share his views about how to preserve (or restore) this vision. He himself always had the generosity to acknowledge that men who were on opposite sides over some issues could nevertheless have common aims, serve the same values, and practice mutual respect.
We shall miss him: there are never enough such men around. We shall miss the way his passion for certain principles never obliterated his compassion for human beings, and the way his all-consuming energy deepened and ripened his judiciousness. As a man, as a colleague, as a scholar, he is irreplaceable. Stanley Hoffmann Professor of Government