Today’s paper is one of those that many readers will save because it reflects a moment in the world’s history.
Even though the announcement of Nelson Mandela’s death was made in the late afternoon, much of what you read in the newspaper has been prepared for weeks, months and in some cases years.
Yes, there were news articles based on the reactions and yes articles were updated to reflect the details of his death, but the paper and the online articles are really a reflection of his life and not his death.
Still that doesn’t mean there wasn’t much to do when the announcement came out.
Correspondent Geoffrey York, who lives and works out of Johannesburg, had prepared an in-depth analysis examining Mr. Mandela’s political and moral legacy. According to Foreign Editor Susan Sachs, he closely followed and sent reports during the day of activity at the Mandela family home and alerted the Toronto office the moment it was announced that President Jacob Zuma would make an address to the nation. “That gave us a 15-minute window before the death was confirmed to gear up, and Geoffrey kept up a running stream of tweets, posts and stories as he reported on reaction on the ground through the night and again, with barely a pause, the morning after.”
Former Africa correspondent Stephanie Nolen, who is now in the new South America bureau, also prepared stories about Mr. Mandela’s career and the impact he made on the world while he was president, and worked through the night to pull together her personal recollections and anecdotes to paint a portrait of the man.
That work of The Globe’s correspondents on the ground, especially Geoff York, will continue for the next few weeks through what is expected to be a huge funeral and celebration of his life.
I heard from a few readers who called to say thank you for such a detailed look at a great man. Along with the great work by Geoff and Stephanie, the photos, the drawing by Brian Gable, the comprehensive obituary by Sandra Martin and the articles on Canada’s role were held out for particular praise.
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