No 127 Posted March 4, 2011
Late last night I received from my friend Marjorie the following email, a copy of one that she had sent to the Toronto Star to express her sympathy on the sudden passing of James Travers, a national columnist for that paper. In my brief reply to my friend, I noted, somewhat abashedly, that I had never heard of Travers. After reading Marjorie’s letter, Traver’s columns from Marjorie’s “keeper list”, and some of the many tributes in newspapers across the land, I decided to pay my own small homage to a man and his writing that I did not know.
Thanks, Marjorie, for your heartfelt letter —
Sent: Thursday, March 03, 2011 10:51 PM
Subject: Deepest sympathy on the untimely death of James Travers
Dear Letters Editor,
Jim Travers wrote “keeper columns”—the kind you want to re-read, the kind you need to re-read to mine every morsel of meaning, the kind that connect the dots through the blur of events hurtling by, pointing to patterns, teasing out trends.
Jim was a watch dog who knew when to growl and when to bark. He unveiled how “Canadian democracy was unravelling, how our country was changing one backward step at a time.” He warned us, “Campaigns matter and the next will matter more than most.” He challenged, “Surely democracy is too important to delegate to politicians.”
Accolades of admiration and affection poured in with news of Jim’s shocking and untimely death. Now that he has our full attention he’d tell us all to get out there and take back Canada, one determined step at a time!
Deepest sympathy to the family, friends and colleagues of journalist extraordinaire, James Travers.
Here’s a partial list of Marjorie’s “Keeper Columns” from the Toronto Star (Click on the title to read the piece)