Robert Jordan was the pen name of James Oliver Rigney, Jr. (October 17, 1948 ? September 16, 2007), under which he was best known as the author of the bestselling The Wheel of Time fantasy series. He also wrote under the name Reagan O'Neal. He died September 16, 2007 from complications from primary amyloidosis with cardiomyopathy (cardiac amyloidosis).
I've been reading his series since I was 10 years old, before the 8th book of his series was ever released, and the Wheel of Time was the first major fantasy series I've ever started. I was such a big fan that I re-read each book over 7 times at least, not to mention reading his short stories and weblogs. When he was first diagnosed with his illness, I was just struck with how optimistic he seemed in his journals despite that and his resolve to beat it. I'm sorry to hear he lost his battle, but he was truly inspiring.
It's not just the fact that the story's ending, but reading about RJ's death like this when his books were such a big part of my life in appreciating other works just makes this so hard. I still can't believe it myself. I wish his wife and family the very best.
R.I.P Robert Jordan. You'll be missed.
For those interested in finding out more on the Wheel of Time, click here.