Monday, April 26, 2010

Tom Wieder

Tom Wieder was old school, the sort of newspaper guy who showed up to work each day in a white dress shirt with sleeves rolled up and a narrow black tie. He was unflappable, precise and willing (and able) to debate the smallest detail because, when it comes to newspapers, small details matter. He was a soft-spoken gentleman, so his wry humor always snuck up on you.

Tom died on Saturday night at the age of 84.

He had been at The Herald for 40 years, leaving his career in journalism when he opted not to reapply when Knight-Ridder took over paper in 1997.

I worked with Tom when I first showed up at The Herald 25 years ago, on the copy desk. At the time, the copy desk was filled with the wise and wizened veterans of The Herald, guys who had been roaming the Peninsula since the days of Ed Ricketts, John Steinbeck and Minnie Coyle. It could be frightening for a journalist of the new age to join a desk with the accumulated experience of that old copy desk, but guys like Tom made me feel welcome. Guys like Tom allowed me to connect with the history of Monterey County and The Herald, and I'm the better for it.

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