EXCERPT FROM RON WHITEHEAD’S PRESENTATION FOR HST’S INDUCTION IN THE KENTUCKY WRITERS HALL OF FAME ON JANUARY 28
“Back at the motel we talked for a while about America, the South,
England – just relaxing a bit before dinner. There was no way either of us could have known, at the time, that it would be the last normal conversation we would have. From that point on, the weekend became a vicious, drunken nightmare. We both went completely to pieces. The main problem Was my prior attachment to Louisville, which naturally led to meeting with old friends, relatives…many of whom were in the process of falling apart, going mad, plotting divorces, cracking up under the strain of terrible debts or recovering from bad accidents. Right in the middle of the whole frenzied
Derby action, a member of my own family had to be institutionalized.
This added a certain amount of strain to the situation, and since poor Steadman had no choice but to take whatever came his way, he was subjected to shock after shock.”
On February 20th it will be 10 years since Hunter died. Right after his death I wrote Hunter Shaman Thompson is Dead, A Tribute. When I was invited to be Hunter’s presenter at his induction into the
Kentucky Writers Hall of Fame I asked Ralph Steadman if he’d like for me to share any words.
Here’s Ralph’s reply:
Hunter was always so perceptive and kind! He referred to my drawings as ‘Filthy Scribblings!’ – and also that I should not write – or I would ‘bring shame on my Family!’ His middle name is STOCKTON!!! He was wiser than any Shaman – so I wouldn’t hang that around his neck!! That would really bring shame….Enough already!!!