by Nick Smith
Farewell to Robert Jordan, who died yesterday from the rare blood disease, amyloidosis. The local writer - real name James Rigney - made the big leagues with his Wheel of Time fantasy series. He was only 58 years old.
Jordan was an integral part of Charleston's literary scene, instantly recognizable with his beard, hat and glasses. But he also valued his privacy, especially since the diagnosis of his progressive blood disorder in late 2005.
The bestselling author sparked the imaginations of readers worldwide with books like The Eye of the World, The Dragon Reborn and original stories featuring Conan the Barbarian. An indication of his amazing popularity: fans offered their bone marrow to help him fight his disease. His ideas will live on through those fans in cyberspace, where countless sites propagate the mythos he created.