Ken Hutcherson, left, in April 2011
  • Kelly O
  • Ken Hutcherson, left, in April 2011

My connection to Ken Hutcherson, who passed away yesterday at the age of 61, goes way back—almost to the beginning of Slog.

I'll miss him.

There was no one who said goodbye quite like Hutch.

He usually called me his brother before hanging up on me (in April of 2007, in January of 2008). I appreciated that. He did the same when telling me I needed to know Jesus. “Bro," Hutch said in June of 2010. "Bro... You don’t want to see that Jesus is the answer. Because you two could be great together. We could be great together.”

I already thought Hutch and I were kind of great together, even if not in the way he meant. He wasn't convinced. In April of 2011, I received a package in the mail from him, a sort of last goodbye since we never really spoke again. In the package was a Bible—New Testament, not Old Testament—that Hutch had embossed with my name on the front.

  • E.S.

Inside, in silver pen, he wrote:

  • E.S.

Yesterday, after I heard that Hutch had passed away, I went to the Stranger offices, dug out the Bible, and read Romans 12:1-2:

I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.