LLR Pages

Sunday, November 21, 2010

R.I.P. David F. Nolan (1943-2010)

I was shocked and horrified to hear of the sudden demise of Libertarian Party founder David F. Nolan, who passed away last night of "unknown causes," as reported by LP activist and medical marijuana advocate Steve Kubby, after having heard about it and confirmed it from Nolan's wife Elizabeth, on his Facebook wall. (Italian pro-Liberty activist Luca Fusari was the one who had heard about it and told me on Facebook but wasn't it was true or a joke. It is sadly true, as I have confirmed it from Lidia Seebeck and Kubby themselves.) Tom Knapp has reported on IPR and KN@PPSTER it as well.

Here's what Kubby wrote on his Facebook wall about an hour ago:

Steve Kubby DAVID NOLAN R.I.P. - Libertarian Party Founder David F. Nolan died last night of unknown causes. I just spoke to Elizabeth Nolan who confirmed David's passing.

According to David Euchner (who also spoke with Elizabeth) on his FB wall:

David Euchner
I just got off the phone with Elizabeth. David was feeling ill from valley fever and was driving to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription - a neighbor found him slumped over the wheel about a block from the house, off the road. He never re...gained consciousness.

We usually go out for dinner and a beer for our birthdays this week, so this was not the news I was expecting when I saw his phone number appear.See More
15 minutes ago · Like

Nolan was an interview guest in Episode 7 of Liberty Cap Talk Live with former panelist Jakki Smith, pro-Liberty friend and panelist Virginia Tuckey, Boston Tea Party member and former California BTP Chairman Joy Waymire, and long-time libertarian movement activist Donald Meinshausen and my co-host Jim Landrith, Jr. on the show, which aired on September 8, 2009 on He was on for a 51-minute interview on the show, which was a great interview that he had given because the panel, my co-host, and I asked him some great questions about the state of the LP, the race for LP Chair between Mark Hinkle and Wayne Allyn Root, and so on. Sadly, it remains as one of the last few interviews he gave before his untimely death. To me it's one of my favorite interviews of all time.

According to Kubby, Nolan was being treated for early stages of prostate cancer*, as he was getting his lab and other medical tests, blood checked regularly, etc. Unfortunately, until more facts are discovered after an autopsy is done on him, the cause of his death will remain unknown. What's worse is that, according to Kubby and a couple of people with whom I spoke on the phone, Nolan's birthday is coming up this Tuesday.

I can only imagine how his wife and family must be feeling right now. I wish them my condolences.

I had the pleasure to know Dave a bit. I confess that I didn't know him THAT well, but he was for better or worse the most influential person not only to the activists in the LP and the libertarian movement, but also to me. He was the one who helped shaped my ideas and thinking as an ideological purist not only in the LP but also in the movement. He's had a profound impact on my life, for which I will never, ever be ungrateful.

Soon there will be a tribute to Nolan by the members of both the Party and the movement.

Dave, we love you and miss you. You are our light and our inspiration in our movement, which is still not a huge movement at all. But you contributed to the pavement of its evolution and its growth, which will be handed over to generations for posterity.

You will be missed. Wherever you are, I hope you are at peace.

*Note: Paulie Cannoli told me he died of pancreatic cancer, but I'll take Kubby's word at this point.

[Update: Here's the video player for Dave's appearance on my show, dated October 8, 2009:]

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[Update II: I forgot to mention that Dave was 66 at the time of his death. This Tuesday he would have been 67 years old. Still, what a young age to die in this day and age.]

[Update III: I also forgot to mention that Dave was the creator of the Nolan Chart, which is used by The Advocates for Self-Government. Again, thanks Dave!]