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RIP Kevin O’Brien, AKA “Hognose”

Kevin, the prolific and incredibly knowledgeable writer behind the Weaponsman blog, passed away yesterday after suffering a heart attack last Friday. His brother, Brendan, has written a post for the site describing Kevin’s life and death.

Weaponsman has been a daily read of mine for years now, with an eclectic mix of witty commentary on firearms, military affairs, fieldcraft, history, and other topics. If any of that sounds interesting then please head over and take a look through the site’s archives, just don’t blame me for all the time you’re about to lose.

Hognose, as he was known to his readers, spoke with the experience of a long military career in the special forces. His site accumulated a community of commenters from around the world, many with similarly deep experience in a variety of fields related to military and firearms matters. Often as much could be gleaned from their commentary as from Hognose’s original posts. I was honored to participate in some of those discussions, as much as I often felt like a neophyte interrupting the discourse of masters.

No one can replace him, but I think I may dust off this ancient blog and start writing on some topics relating to my own professional areas of competence as a naval historian/operations analyst. It seems like a mere ember springing up in the bed left by a recently extinguished bonfire, but if others are similarly inspired then perhaps, together, we might go some way towards maintaining the illumination Kevin sought to provide the world.

Thank you, Hognose. You will be remembered.

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