October 10, 2012

Good-bye to a good editor

Good-bye to a good editor

Gerald Anderson, former owner and editor of the McLean County Journal, died at his home over the last weekend in Sept. He had just finished covering the Northland Community Health Fair for photos for a planned article.
It was an example of what one can achieve under severe limitations and still do a good job … make that excellent job!
Jerry could do work with his hands as well as his head. After trying to get the basement water situation under control and having to endure my needling about it, he ended up fixing it himself. He told me, “All the plumbers want too much money.” To which I replied, “Good lord, Jerry. Some things are worth paying for.” It was, after all, HIS money, so he did it his way.
I relied on Jerry to proof my writing to an extreme. He saw every space, missed capitalization, misspelled name and, on occasion, challenged me on the use of my grammar or a word that he thought I had “made up.” After I would prove to him that I had not, he would let it stand. The old “I haven’t ever seen this word before,” doesn’t cut much cake with a non-conservative writer.
Jerry was a family man and he talked about his kids and grandkids. His wife died shortly after I started work for the Journal so I never got to know her well. I know he missed her, her cooking, and the help with everyday life and chores.
 


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