One day, he confessed that he hoped he'd be able to take a break from his other professional obligations soon so he could write a book.
What will you write about? I asked. He certainly had plenty of options. He could author a memoir, telling the remarkable story of a White House speechwriter cum national news anchor cum White House press secretary. Or he could narrate a revealing account of his turns in the White House during not just one but two Bush presidencies.
But while he knew as well as I did that those were the books publishing houses would pay big money to publish, he had something else in mind.
"I'm going to write a book about beating cancer," he said. "People need to know that they can beat it -- they can beat cancer with love, and with family support, and with a positive attitude. I did it, and I'm going to write a book about it." That was before he got sick again.
I'd give anything for Tony to be writing that book right now.
I will miss Tony Snow. I'll miss his judicious journalism, his nimble political debate, and his openly patriotic sensibility. I'll miss the way he was able to face conflict, even tragedy, with gravitas and levity at the same time. Most of all, I'll miss his kindness and friendship.
Sweetly avuncular, empirically likeable, astonishingly intelligent -- the loss of Tony Snow will be felt by us all for a long time to come.