Soon it will be the turn of my contemporaries. Many even of these old friends are gone. I know, because I attended the funerals, or received the letters, or caught the shocking news by chance. When they die they grow younger in the passages of the mind. Even Rick, Joe’s eldest, killed by a car at the age of twenty-three, trying to save a dog. My precise contemporary, but now I search in my memory for his face and voice, and for a moment find him vividly before me, but reverted to eight or nine. It is as if they perish through birth as well as death, growing ever smaller.
Because of an editing error, an obituary in some copies on Friday about the writer Christopher Hitchens referred incorrectly to the circumstances of his death. While he did die at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, he had not entered hospice care there, and he had not stopped treatment. The obituary also misstated the source of a remark by Mr. Hitchens, an avowed atheist, about the possibility of a deathbed conversion. It came from a 2010 interview with The Atlantic, not with The New York Times. And the obituary also misstated the frequency of “Minority Report,” the column Mr. Hitchens wrote for The Nation. It appeared biweekly, not bimonthly.