Last week, NR unexpectedly suffered the loss of one of our longest-serving employees, Tony Savage, who had worked for Bill Buckley since the late 1960s. Tony and I forged a friendship years ago based on our mutual love for baseball in general, and for the Yankees in particular. When I first began working at NR some ten years ago, one nice March day I found myself briefly lingering on a street corner at lunch-time with Tony. Even though the weather wasn’t yet warm, we could both feel that little extra strength of the sun on our faces, which meant one thing—baseball was coming soon. He took me to my first game at Yankee Stadium, which must have been in 1993. It was against the Mariners, with Randy Johnson pitching before he became dominant. The Yankees won. Tony was a great enthusiast, so in the many times we went back to the Stadium I think the phrase I heard him say most was, “This is great.” And he never meant “great” in the sense of really good, but “great” in sense of the most marvelous thing that ever happened in the history of the planet. He was always insanely optimistic about the Yankees’ chances—ready to believe in the most improbable comeback scenarios. I was a pessimist—to keep from being let down—and if you averaged out our outlooks you probably got something reasonable. He had been a DJ and actor on and off, had a deep, rich radio voice, and loved to tell stories, in which invariably whatever was being related was the funniest, the most amazing, the most stupendous thing. He joked easily with strangers, loved intense conversation (especially with women), and was ready to believe whomever he had just met was the most fill-in-the-blank—funny, beautiful, talented—person he’d ever encountered. In management-consultant talk he was very “affirming.” He simply loved people, and lavished them with his heart-felt sunniness. He also loved to play softball, and managed and played for the NR team and played every Sunday in a pickup game in Riverdale. No one hated rain more than Tony Savage. And he didn’t want to just play one game, if he could play two, or three—as they sometimes did in Riverdale. Tony was about 30 years older than me, and wasn’t fleet of foot any more, so he pitched, but did it with gusto. I played a few times with him in Riverdale, where the guys had been together for 20 years or so, but still played with a reverent intensity—arguing calls, yelling at each other over errors, marveling at a nice play. Tony would often give me updates the Mondays after he played, typically starting with the phrase, “You’ll never believe it, but . . . I threw 24 innings Sunday . . . we scored 4 runs to win in the ninth . . . I hit a double!” We were in the practice of calling each other during any big Yankee moment, so if something awful or wonderful had happened in a World Series game we wouldn’t have to say hello when the phone rang before yelling, moaning, or laughing. Our biggest Yankee moment together was at a playoff game against the Indians in 1997 with a couple of other friends, when the Yankees came back to win with back-to-back-to-back home runs. We would sometimes recall the crazy ecstasy of that moment, screaming and hugging in the left-field bleachers. It is some comfort to know that whatever joy was in that moment is a pittance compared to that Tony is experiencing now, in a better place. I’ll miss him—everyone here will miss him–so much. Tony Savage, RIP.