I was greatly saddened to wake up this morning to the news that my friend and former colleague William (Bill) J. Hamblin had passed away.
When I was first hired at BYU, Bill was assigned to be the co-principal investigator with me on the Book of Abraham project. Unfortunately, he was unable to continue in that role as the project greatly benefited from his insight and clear thinking.
Bill, better than anyone else I know except my wife, had the gift of
being able to see through to the heart of an issue and be able to
explain it clearly and concisely. Unlike many historians I know, he
understood methodological issues and logical fallacies and could
identify them quickly. He also had little patience with arrant nonsense. He was a gifted writer.
He also had a quick wit and a mischievous sense of humor. He would
write these parodies of songs and poems that skewered intellectual
nonsense and could do so seemingly without effort and very quickly.
Bill was firmly committed to the gospel of Jesus Christ and to his Church. I already miss him.