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Tuesday, March 15, 2005

John Barron, RIP

I never met John Barron, but I knew I was getting the truth whenever I read one of his stories in Reader's Digest about Soviet Communism, KGB inflitration of the West or the multiple horrors committed by communist tyrants like Pol Pot in Cambodia. Or anything else Barron focused on in his reporting. The sturdiness, precision and candor of the man's words made me want to be a journalist. For many years now, he has always come to mind whenever I've thought of men and women who epitomize the best virtues of a still honorable craft.

Barron passed away several weeks ago and I hate to confess that I had not heard of his passing until earlier today when I chanced upon this wonderful obituary by Bill Schultz, another absolutely first-rate journalist who I have been blessed to know and who worked with Barron as the Digest's Washington Bureau Chief for many years.

Writing an obit is not an easy task because the responsibility of the writer is to capture in a comparatively few words the significance of an entire life, and to do it fairly, accurately and justly. It is no surprise that Schultz perfectly captures the immense significance of John Barron's life as a journalist, a patriot and a witness to the truth.

Rest in peace, John Barron, a man who will be missed by many he never knew.