I met Bob at, I think, my first Minicon. My first or second in any case. Like many things (and I mean this in the best way possible) it was badger2305's fault. Victor introduced me to this old guy sitting on the porch of one of the poolside cabanas. I shook hands with Bob and he offered me a swig of his whiskey. Beam's Choice, charcoal filtered, green label. In that first meeting I was not smoothed, but later that weekend I was.
Bob was exactly what I liked about fandom from the beginning. Here was a guy who had written a couple of novels I'd never read, was living (he said to me once) on the bits of income that came from the fact that they were kept in print. He attended conventions nearly every weekend of the year in one place or another, always as a guest of the convention. Everyone liked having Tucker around; with Tucker in the room it was always a good party.
For a few years after meeting Tucker I was of the opinion that when I grew up, I wanted to be Bob Tucker. I wanted to be the guy who brought the whiskey and shared it with everyone, who had the occasional cigar but was polite enough to take it outside if it bothered anyone. Who always had a smile for a new fan and a story to tell.
Tucker was the best of fandom in person. Age and health slowed him down but they never diminished him.
The Enchanted Convention (where Fans go when they die) just got a hell of a lot jollier.