August 27th, 2015

Our Buddy Merl

by Jerry Scott & Jim Borgman

UnknownIt was tough to see that Merl Reagle died the other day at a very young 65.

Jerry and I met Merl at the Tucson Festival of Books a few years ago. For a crossword fanatic like me, it was like meeting a rockstar. Merl brought a wicked sense of humor to constructing, and almost single-handedly stole puzzles from the blue-rinse ghetto when he hit the scene.

His first words upon meeting us were, “You guys made ZITS useable in crossword puzzles.” And indeed we have shown up in a few.

It was an honor to illustrate Merl’s best-of crossword book commemorating the 100th anniversary of the puzzles last year. It’s a must-have for any true solver.┬áRest in peace, friend.Merl

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