Written by the Deceased
Those were the bare facts of Fontenay's obit. But there was oh so much more.
During his 40-plus years at The Tennessean, Fontenay worked as a general assignment reporter, science reporter, legislative and political writer, city editor and rewrite editor. In his spare time, he prepared advance obituaries on prominent people -- including his own.
"Charles L. Fontenay, most of whose half century-plus as a newspaperman was spent with The Tennessean, surprised himself and delighted many of his colleagues by dying yesterday."
Although the self-penned piece was a bit long -- particularly for a professional editor -- I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Charles' work, hobbies and life experiences. His article also reminded me to look beyond the bare facts of a person's life when I'm researching/writing obits, and really delve into the details. For it is there that the best stories are found.