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An obol for the obituary man.

By PETER STOTHARD [The Times] – Just as a butcher should have the best of Christmas turkeys, and the fireman’s house deserves especially dutiful attention in a fire, the Obituaries Editor of a newspaper has to be sent off in style.

Exactly thus, and very stylishly indeed, came the story of Tony Howard’s life in The Times today (available to on-line subscribers and surely worth the charge in itself), a piece which the great man would have approved, honest, accurate, elegantly balanced between the goods and bads, ups and downs, failures and successes of our trade.

The way in which journalists were treated in obituaries was a matter of special interest to Tony, when he ran the obituary pages of The Times throughout  the latter part of my decade as Editor. When I disagreed with his predecessors in that job, the cause was normally that some monstrous African dictator was getting the nil nisi bonum respect better fitting for a harmless Ministry of Agriculture mandarin. Any disagreement with Tony, however, was always in the opposite direction.

Continued at Peter Stothard/The Times | More Chronicle & Notices.

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