Not only has he influenced my writing, but reading his work shaped me into the man that I am today. His stories are full of tidbits of wisdom for a hungry young mind and preach things like self discipline, loyalty to family and responsibility.
On of his lines that I has stuck with me over the years is: "The difference between a man and a boy is the willingness to accept responsibility," though I couldn't tell you what story it came from. It became a mantra that I repeated to myself over the years because I wanted to become a man just like the characters he described.
Some people grow up with sports stars and celebrities as their heroes; my heroes were William Tell Sackett, Milo Talon and Borden Chantry, and of course Louis L'Amour.