A damn amazing person passed away this week. His name was Alex King and he made a fundamentally good impact on my life and I wanted to say goodbye and share a story about this man.
I met him at BarCamp organized by Joe Pezzillo, Daniel Newman, Austin Gayer among others. It was my first tech event. I was struggling finding a job after college having just moved to Boulder and meeting Alex, and all the people there was a sudden shock to me. These people were making a living creating the web. They loved what they did and on this Saturday morning we met up to just talk about what everyone was passionate about.
Alex talked about WordPress as he was one of the corer developers at the time. I had this blog set up at the time and it was my outlet to find a group of people that were creators. At the time WordPress had the first few links on your blogroll populated by the blogs of the core developers and Alex was one of them.
That weekend changed the trajectory of my life. I met so many people that have played a huge roll in my life. Christy Kruzick, Myriah Conroy, Jeremy Hinegardner, Dave Taylor, David Cohen (who wrote a goodbye to Alex here), Devin Reams, Matt Matteson and Stan James to name a few.
Alex led a session about the future of WordPress and hacks. I think there were 5 of us there. It was small and a discussion mostly. At one point I said something about the most amazing thing about WordPress was the ability to prototype and launch quickly. I don’t know if he was just being nice (which he was amazingly kind) but he challenged me to launch a site and document it that day. Over the next 17 minutes we sat on a couch and launched a site.
If there was a precursor to Startup Weekend, Alex had pushed me into it. Over the next few years he was a frequent attendee to events in the area and even moved his office up to Boulder to be near the friends we had formed. He moved back to shorten his commute and spend time with his family, which limited my interactions with him but was an amazing thing to do. He had a huge heart and gave back through open source projects and friendships.
It has taken me all week to really write about this. It is far what it should be, but a lesson I learned from Alex is that sometimes you just have to hit publish. So, publishing, on something he helped build.
Alex was one of the good ones. I strive to be like him. I hope you do too.