Covering a staff member’s death

Last week my paper lost a columnist when he died unexpectedly at his family home in Northern Virginia.

Covering any death is difficult, but offering the campus information on one of the Collegiate Times’ own contributors was especially challenging.

Dieter Seltzer, who died on Valentine’s Day, wrote a recurring opinion feature with his sister, Gabi Seltzer, in which the siblings offered different perspectives on political or cultural issues. Gabi is a former CT opinion editor.

The family was willing to offer information, and I think I painted an accurate, respectful portrait of Dieter for the campus community and offered the vital information to make at least a little sense of the always confusing death of a college student.

It was an assignment I volunteered for in hopes of providing thorough and respectful coverage. Certainly difficult, but of utmost importance. It’s an assignment you never want to do, but I am proud of how the paper handled it.

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