My heart is broken. Sandra gave me a shot when no one else would answer my phone calls. She taught me how to be a journalist and a writer, and she taught me how to be fearless when chasing a story. I once got two gubernatorial candidates in the middle of a contentious campaign to sit down to talk to me for an April Fools story about the Bay being put up for sale. And she printed a lede I wrote that almost, but not quite, got me banned from the campus of the U.S. Naval Academy (“If the U.S. Navy fought wars like its academy for future officers has been playing football, we’d all be speaking Japanese right now.”)
I’ve been lucky to work with some great editors over the years, but never one as open to story ideas as Sandra. She let me write about my father and my family. She let me propose — well, kind of propose — to my now-wife in the paper. I also wrote about a motorcycle gang raising money for kids, undocumented immigrants trying to find their way in a new land, baseball, presidential politics and the county dump.
But it wasn’t only Sandra. It was Betsy and Alex and Lisa and Bill. I loved working in that old house in Deale (even though I still have nightmares about Sandra editing calendar entries!) and I loved those people. I miss those days terribly.
What I’m trying to say is this. While I am just a short sentence in your long story, you are chapters in mine. Nothing I’ve done in the past 20 years would have been possible without Bay Weekly. I am honored to have been a tiny, tiny part of your wonderful story. I love you all and wish you all the best.