One of my former O’Reilly colleagues has passed away. Erik T. Ray died last week from complications due to a biking accident. He was 38.

Erik had many interests aside from his chosen profession of programming. If you’ve watched The Gameshelf, you’ve probably seen him (he was on twice as a player). Erik wrote two books for O’Reilly, Learning XML and Perl & XML. At some point in the last five years (all of which are somewhat hazy to me now), Erik approached me to co-author a Ruby on Rails book. Unfortunately, my schedule wasn’t amenable to book writing at the time.

Erik was a sweet guy. A man of his dimensions could easily have bullied his way through social interactions, but that wasn’t his way. Intellectually curious, Erik was frequently cobbling together things, whether through coding, writing or more substantial media.

Erik, you will be missed.