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Our Noel Sheppard passed away yesterday (Friday) morning at about 5:00 AM. Say a prayer for the soul of a man we'll all miss professionally, and many, many of us will miss personally as well. Noel was not just a force of nature, he was a very good man.How quickly this all happened. Just two months ago, Noel wrote about suddenly getting cancer at 53 called "Cancer's Ray of Hope." Nine days ago, he wrote us and said he was interested in writing about his "progress" -- and he put "progress" in quotes. We were all wishing for better news, and really couldn't imagine this was a battle that would end this way.Noel joined us and was introduced to us by Matt Sheffield at the founding of NewsBusters in 2005, and he became our Associate Editor. It must be said that no blogger here was more prolific and more popular. We'll have more to say in the coming days.